We Were Liars: The award-winning YA book TikTok can’t stop talking about!
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This is the story of a wealthy, beautiful family. It’s a beautiful night, and we are indeed a beautiful family. Cadence Sinclair Eastman is the eldest grandchild of the wealthy Harris Sinclair. Although her family pretends to be perfect, Cadence knows that beneath the surface, the wealth and privilege have taken an insidious toll on her family and any unhappiness or odd behavior is ignored or repressed to perpetuate the image of refinement. Harris has three daughters, Cadence's mother Penny, and her aunts Carrie and Bess. Harris owns an island called Beechwood Island near Martha's Vineyard and has built a home for himself called Clairmont along with a house for each of his daughters.
As things started to heat up and I reached the cusp of the climax, the narrator's voice increased in intensity. She began talking faster, became very emotional, then suddenly on the verge of tears!It wasn’t the most traditional sense of mental health representation, but it still gave a very unique look at trauma rep. The trippy, metaphorical writing layered with the distortion from Cadence’s mind added so much to the plot. It made things so much more...confusing, but in a dreamy way. Special thanks to NetGalley and Random House Children’s / Delacorte Press for sharing this one of the most anticipated books’ digital reviewer copy with me in exchange my honest thoughts. Annnd...that's all there was that wasn't directly connected with the twist. Just her whining on and on about how much she loves the boy OR about how her rich family. Fab. I have a theory. I have a theory about this book that I'm really excited to discuss so I'm going to make a video about it!
the prequel follows 17 year old Caroline “Carrie” Sinclair, one of the three Sinclair sisters and Johnny’s (from We Were Liars) mother, during one unforgettable summer. it was very reminiscent of the first book, but stands entirely on its own. stylistically, both books are similar, the narrative style of this book echoing the narration of the first. but plot wise, they’re nothing alike. I don't want to go into too much depth with the plot because I strongly feel that by giving away the twist (even hints at the twist) would completely ruin the novel. He was never fond of dogs, and it was a sign of how much he loved my mother that he let our golden retrievers sleep on the sofas and walked them three miles every morning. He was never fond of my grandparents, either, and it was a sign of how much he loved both me and Mummy that he spent every summer in Windemere House on Beechwood Island, writing articles on wars fought long ago and putting on a smile for the relatives at every meal. i do think there could’ve been more to make me hate Pfeff, yes he does horrible things but i think i needed more anger from Carries side to really feel the emotions. It doesn’t matter if divorce shreds the muscles of our hearts so that they will hardly beat without a struggle. It doesn’t matter if trust-fund money is running out; if credit card bills go unpaid on the kitchen counter. It doesn’t matter if there’s a cluster of pill bottles on the bedside table.Aunt Carrie’s husband left her when she was pregnant with Johnny’s brother, Will. I don’t know what happened. The family never speaks of it. By summer eight, Will was a baby and Carrie had taken up with Ed already. All of her aunts constantly vie for the grandfather's attention and favor (in an attempt to keep ahold of the family fortune). Mostly, I agree with the rating GoodReads gives to this novel. I read it to preface the content for my 12-year-old daughter. The story is dark, and at times riveting, but other parents should be aware of these themes:
With the help of Johnny, Mirren, and Gat, Cady eventually begins to recall the events leading up to the accident. She learns that years earlier, Ed had proposed to Carrie but that Carrie had refused, fearing that she would lose her inheritance if she married an Indian man. Cady also recalls the anger with which she and the other Liars discussed their plan to destroy Clairmont, the big house on the island that—to them, at least—represented the bigotry and greed that was tearing apart their family. They had decided that without Clairmont and all the valuable possessions inside it, the Sinclair sisters would no longer have anything to feud over. Finally, Cady’s memories of that fateful night return to her: how they forgot to let the dogs out of the house before setting it on fire, how they each took a different part of the house, and how the fire spread more rapidly than they expected, trapping Johnny, Mirren, and Gat in the building, killing them. Cadence makes a tight little group with the two grandchildren her own age, Johnny and Mirren, and an outsider, Gat, who joins them every year. Aged 15, Cadence falls in love with Gat. At the end of that summer, she has an accident, a breakdown or some kind of illness, but she can't remember what happened, how or why. All she knows is that she was found on the shore, dressed in her underwear, the sea washing over her. "They tested me for brain tumours, meningitis, you name it. To relieve the pain they prescribed this drug and that drug and another drug, because the first one didn't work and the second one didn't work, either." this novel has a twist that you wont see coming, but you will try to convince yourself that you did. It's a very clever book and an incredibly sophisticated piece of YA. BUT... an execution that was not to my tastes. The writing was too choppy and fragmented and I hated the frequent use of nouns as adjectives. Like this:
Harris Sinclair – The wealthy patriarch of the family who is controlling and enjoys watching his children fight to please him
So all I’m going to do is to give you a little character description. The rest you’ll have to figure out on your own. XD Summer fourteen, Gat and I took out the small motorboat alone. It was just after breakfast. Bess made Mirren play tennis with the twins and Taft. Johnny had started running that year and was doing loops around the perimeter path. Gat found me in the Clairmont kitchen and asked, did I want to take
We have been pretending everything’s okay all year, and we will keep pretending everything’s okay. We know how. It’s the family way.” Jonathan Sinclair Dennis – Carrie's oldest child, born three weeks after Cadence, second oldest Sinclair grandchild