Seven seems like a big number. Or little, depending on how you look at it. Buying seven books? Oh, okay, that’s nothing. Reading from seven different point of views?! Wow, that suddenly seems so much more. As you could have guessed from the title, Seven Ways We Lie deals with seven different teenagers. Dealing with high school, and, life. Before, all of those characters certainly seemed like, a lot. But wow, I was completely surprised by this book.
A REALISTIC PORTRAYAL OF HIGH SCHOOL
What’s even more surprising, is that there’s nothing to be surprised for, in this book. No one knows how to control fire with their hands, no one is fighting against dragons, demons or anything like that, and neither is anyone saving the world from doom and its ending. This is high school, not fantasy 101, and if you don’t like contemporary, then I guess this is not the book for you. In Seven Ways We Lie, we follow seven teenagers trying to survive their dreading years of high school. In between scandals, secrets, people pretending to be someone they’re not, feelings and relationships, friendships as much as love…we get the whole panel of situations that we can go through in high school. It’s realistic, it’s believable, and it’s written with witty dialogue that flows and pages that you turn without even realizing it.
SEVEN POV?! YES. AND IT WAS GREAT.
With seven different point of views, I would usually scream and run away. Because it’s too much, and there’s no way not to get lost in between the characters, and how can there be seven distinctive voices in such a little book –a little over 200 pages? Well, let me tell you, this is where this is surprising: I don’t think I’ve ever read a book with different voices handled so well. Sure, with so little time, I missed getting to know my favorite characters, and would have loved to get deeper. Despite this little drawback, I loved every character, and the attention that the author brought to each of their voices. They all were different, they all had their issues –important ones, that I’ll come back to later on-, but they were all relatable, and it was wonderful. I’m human, and I did have some preferences for Olivia, Matthew, and Kat. But all were just, great. And diverse, too! This is the first time I was reading about a pansexual character, and I was happy to. There are so many complexity in this world, it’s good to see some featured in a little book like that, dealing with life, simply. Because this is part of life.
Okay, here’s the question you’re all asking for: why seven? There’s supposed to be a parallel here with the seven deadly sins, each character representing one. Confession time: I didn’t really guess, and I didn’t want to try, because I was too focused on the story to try and do that. But there are some feelings coming back often, such as anger, jealousy, pride. Feelings we can’t escape, whether we’re a teenager, or older. Sometimes, we can’t stop feeling this way, but…who tells you that there isn’t more to the story than what you’re seeing? In picturing high school, Seven Ways We Lie rules. Because it’s filled with stereotypes, with beautiful yet flawed friendships, with perfect girls in appearance, but broken inside. With “pretended sluts”, and introverts and “weirdos”. No one is perfect, and there’s much, much more to anyone that you can know. You just have to dig a little deeper.
On your way for the perfect contemporary stories set in high school, Seven Ways We Lie clearly is a must stop. Tackling down stereotypes, sins and dealing with many different characters in such a flawless way, this debut is the recipe for a simple, yet very good meal. Lovers of contemporary, don’t miss out on this one. And don’t get scared by the number seven: it’s a lucky one.
Final rating: 4 drops!
Many thanks to Amulet BOOKS for sending me an ARC copy of this book via NetGalley.
Do you want to read Seven Ways We Lie? Did you get lucky enough to read it already? What did you think about it?
Does multiple POV make you happy, or just back away in fear?! Share your thoughts in comments!
Riley Redgate, Seven Ways We Lie, Published by Amulet Books, March 8th 2015.
Paloma High School is ordinary by anyone’s standards. It’s got the same cliques, the same prejudices, the same suspect cafeteria food. And like every high school, every student has something to hide—whether it’s Kat, the thespian who conceals her trust issues onstage; or Valentine, the neurotic genius who’s planted the seed of a school scandal.
When that scandal bubbles over, and rumors of a teacher-student affair surface, everyone starts hunting for someone to blame. For the unlikely allies at the heart of it all, the collision of their seven ordinary-seeming lives results in extraordinary change.