We Were Liars by E. Lockhart — A Book Review

Posted June 9, 2014 by Jess in books, jess, Reviews / 3 Comments

featured graphic for book review

About the Book





We Were Liars
E. Lockhart
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 240
Pub Date: May 13, 2014


A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.

A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.
We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense novel from National Book Award finalist and Printz Award honoree E. Lockhart. 

Read it.
And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE.

Order from Amazon:

Add to Goodreads:

My Thoughts

We Were Liars is reminiscent of Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and A Diamond as Big as the Ritz or Jeffrey Eugenides’ The Virgin Suicides.  The ideas of F. Scott Fitzgerald, that wealth and ambition create the tragic downfall of the classic American rich melded together with a mysterious quality of Suicides and bled into the pages of this book.

It was also an allegory, a modern-day interpretation of King Lear.  I am really glad that I took that Shakespeare class last year, because I was able to see this clearly and it really helped the story mean something more for me.  I saw past the words on the page to the meaning of it all.

I can now see why the reviews for this book were so split — why it could be seen as a bland story or as an incredible one.  With the beautiful words and tragic unraveling, I fall wholly in the latter category.  This book was a mix of lyrical and poetic realism with an ethereal prose.  At times, I felt like I was in another world, seeing the lives of these people played out much like a fairy tale.  And then, when the surface was scratched, we could see the tinny, dull underpinnings.  This wasn’t a fairy-tale: it was a bloody mess of expectations and masks and pretending to be something that it wasn’t.

I will say I figured out what was going on before I was half-way through the book (and all by myself I will add — I had no idea what the book was about going into it! I purposefully didn’t even read the synopsis).  So then instead of forcing through the story to find out what was going on, I was pushing to find out if I was right (and I was).  It did take a little of the mystery away, but it didn’t lessen the book. I appreciate the story that was told and I absolutely loved the way it was told.

This book was special and definitely left me thinking.  For all its hype, I am glad I decided to finally pick it up and find out what all the fuss was about.

much love,


Rating Breakdown

Tags: ,


3 responses to “We Were Liars by E. Lockhart — A Book Review

  1. Oh – I love when reviews are split on a book. It means there is a lot to think about or depth.

    I will look it up. Thx for the review.


    • I don’t think it is specifically billed as that, but I definitely saw the parallels. The author also mentions the book and the stories that are mentioned parallel King Lear very easily.

      I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.