The Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars, One of Us Is Lying is the story of what happens when five strangers walk into detention and only four walk out alive. Everyone is a suspect, and everyone has something to hide.
The five students who land in detention for breaking the “no cellphone” rule are:
Bronwyn, the brain, is Yale-bound and never breaks a rule.
Addy, the beauty, is the picture-perfect homecoming princess.
Nate, the criminal, is already on probation for dealing.
Cooper, the athlete, is the all-star baseball pitcher.
And Simon, the outcast, is the creator of Bayview High’s notorious gossip app.
This is the start of the book, and all of them protest that they are innocent of the infraction. As they work through the essay they’ve been assigned to write as punishment, there’s a fender bender in the parking lot which pulls nearly all of them towards the window to see what happened. When they turn back to the room, Simon is on the floor in the midst of an apparent anaphylactic attack. A hurried search in his belongings finds no epi-pen, and the nurse’s office is strangely missing all of theirs as well. What caused Simon’s sudden death, and how did it happen when all of them were in the same room? Clearly, someone did this to him but which one?
This is a YA book, which I don’t normally read but I saw a recommendation for it and decided to give it a try. I have to admit, I was hooked pretty much early on. It’s told in different viewpoints of the students, who all have secrets to hide that Simon was threatening to expose in his gossip app. Though they weren’t exactly friends before this happened, they will all become much closer as the investigation continues. As the story unfolds, each of these four will go through some agonizing situations, and will learn to lean on each other and to mature beyond the superficial stereotypes they start the book as. Along with the angst and the uncertainty, there’s some romance thrown into the mix as well.
As for the resolution to the murder, I admit I was surprised the ending – totally not where I expected it to go. However, without giving away the ending, I will have to say that certain aspects of the reveal may be upsetting to some readers. I’ve just started reading book 2, which is along similar lines, so hopefully it’s as good as this one.