Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Review: The Lying Game by Sara Shepard

The Lying Game by Sara Shepard

Series: The Lying Game (#1)
Pages: 307
Publisher: HarperTeen
Published: December 7th, 2010
IBSN: 9780061869709

I had a life anyone would kill for. Then someone did.

The worst part of being dead is that there’s nothing left to live for. No more kisses. No more secrets. No more gossip. It’s enough to kill a girl all over again. But I’m about to get something no one else does—an encore performance, thanks to Emma, the long-lost twin sister I never even got to meet.

Now Emma’s desperate to know what happened to me. And the only way to figure it out is to be me—to slip into my old life and piece it all together. But can she laugh at inside jokes with my best friends? Convince my boyfriend she’s the girl he fell in love with? Pretend to be a happy, carefree daughter when she hugs my parents good night? And can she keep up the charade, even after she realizes my murderer is watching her every move?

Let the lying game begin.

[Synopsis by Goodreads]

I'd never read Sara Shepard's earlier series, Pretty Little Liars, before picking up The Lying Game, so I didn't know what to expect, and so, I tried to expect very little. I was pleasantly surprised, however.

The Lying Game is narrated by Sutton, murdered and forced to watch her life, now starring her twin sister who's trying to figure out how killed her, from the sidelines. I watch the Pretty Little Liars TV series, so I knew how Sara Shepard can create a compelling premise, and The Lying Game was nothing less. However, like PLL, I can imagine The Lying Game turning into a ridiculously long series with no foreseeable conclusion. I mean, how many books are contracted for the PLL series now? 35?

Sutton, post-mortem, doesn't remember a lot about her life besides the basics and whatever comes to her in flashes. Though, the Sutton that Emma is getting to know - by living her life - is nothing but a bitch. She and her friends are the players of The Lying Game, for which they play huge, cruel pranks. I could connect with the Sutton who was narrating the story, but I hated the real one. Emma, however, I liked. She's nicer, smarter, and more genuine than the girl whose shoes she's in.

The plot is constantly twisting. Just as Emma thinks she's made a break-through in her investigation of her sister's murder, she's thrown for a loop. Every interaction Emma has with the people around her is a clue, I was on my toes constantly while reading.

The ending left so many loose plot threads that I know won't be tied up until books and books from now that I'm not really aching to read the next book, Never Have I Ever, though I know I will once it comes out.

I give The Lying Game a 3 out of 5.