ARC REVIEW: Seven Ways We Lie by Riley Redgate

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Title: Seven Ways We Lie
Author: Riley Redgate
Publisher: Abrams and Chronicle
Status: Published, available in hardback 


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.


When Abrams contacted me about the possibility of reviewing this book, I jumped at the chance. I was really excited by the idea of the 7 characters each representing one of the 7 Deadly Sins (Lust, Envy, Greed, Sloth, Gluttony, Greed and Pride). 

This is Riley's debut, and her ability to thread seven simultaneous character's stories together really illustrates a very strong natural talent. Threading multiple webs of story together and making sure the reader doesn't get lost is no mean feat- but I really think that Riley pulled it off excellently. I really enjoyed reading from each characters perspective, which for me, is quite rare, as normally in a book with multiple narrators I get bored with a particular character or begin to feel like they are unnecessary filler, but it was clear that each narrator brought an important part of the plot together. 

I loved the representation of the 'High School' setting. The multiple characters displays the distinction between every single person, creating really cool dynamics and interactions between characters who wouldn't normally cross paths.

This rich mixture of characters and conflicting accounts and opinions created a realistic vibe. The fact that the pivotal plot point stems not only from a controversial and poignant topic such as Teacher-Student relationships, but the fact that all the events evolved from a rumour felt as though the story could actually happen in any school. 

The only issues I had with the story was that I felt that sometimes it wasn't always totally clear which character correlated with which sin. In some cases it was obvious, but after finishing the whole book I was still unsure on the part that some of the characters played.

Overall it was a raw depiction of teen years. It showcased the struggles and issues many teens deal with in a light, contemporary way.
A very important book.

3/5 Stars

1 comment:

  1. I love the idea of each character representing one of the seven deadly sins, and I'm glad to see that she really did a great job depicting the high school experience. I really like the cover too, so I might give this one a try!! Nice review :)

    Rachel @ A Perfection Called Books