Title: The Lying Game
Author: Sara Shepard
Published: December 7th 2010 by HarperTeen
Synopsis: "New York Times bestselling author Sara Shepard’s new series weaves a mystery of long-lost twins, mistaken identities, a duplicitous circle of friends, and cold-blooded murder. Combining juicy plot lines, to-die-for lifestyles, a tangled web of friendship and romance, magnetic characters, and sharp-witted narration from the afterlife, The Lying Game is an alluring cross between Pretty Little Liars and The Lovely Bones.
Foster kid Emma Paxton has only just discovered Sutton Mercer, the wealthy twin sister she never knew she had, when Sutton drops off the face of the earth, asking Emma to cover for her at home, school, and with her friends—just for a few days. At first Emma enjoys trying on her sister’s fabulous life: her fiercely loyal friends, her adoring boyfriend, her close-knit family. But as Emma is drawn deeper into Sutton’s world she finds the friends are not so fabulous, the boyfriend is not who she wants to be with, and the family is clinging to long-buried secrets and a veneer of functionality. And worst of all, Sutton may not be coming back. In fact, someone may have made sure she never could…and that someone knows Emma is not who she claims to be. Emma will need all her wits to survive The Lying Game."
First Line: "I woke up in a dingy claw-foot bathtub in an unfamiliar pink-tiled bathroom."
Thoughts: If you're a fan of snobby girls, cruel pranks, liars, mystery and the quiet-yet-brooding-boy-from-school, then The Lying Game is the book for you! Much like Sara's Pretty Little Liars series, The Lying Game will have you questioning every character's motives, including Sutton's (one of the main characters). Who can you trust when it seems like everyone's keeping secrets from you?
From the prologue, you (aka, the reader) know exactly what happened to Sutton. The main questions are how, who and why. That's something that Emma (Sutton's long lost twin sister) will have to find out.
After moving from foster family to foster family, the only thing Emma is looking forward to is graduating from high school and going to college. She's had a rough life, and soon, she won't have to rely on the system anymore. Then, out of the blue, she finds out there's a girl out there who looks exactly like her. Could this girl be a long lost twin sister? With no family, Emma must find out more about this mysterious girl. So what does she do? She packs up her bags and goes to visit her!
As soon as Emma arrives in Arizona, everyone mistakes her for Sutton. Sutton's friends, sister and even parents can't tell the difference. But the bigger question is, where's Sutton? In order to find out what happened to Sutton, Emma must now take her place. But how do you pretend to be a girl you've never met, especially when she's everything you're not? And what if something really bad happened to Sutton? Does that mean Emma's next?
This book is like one of those 10000 piece puzzles. At first, I was confused and didn't know what was going on. Then, the pieces started pulling together, and I started to see the big picture. Sadly, because this is the first book in a series, it left me with about 200 pieces of the puzzle placed together and the rest still scattered everywhere. While I have an idea of what's going on, it still left me questioning where all the other pieces fall.
One thing I loved about the book is the plot. Yes, it kind of borderlined Pretty Little Liars (it has that "WTF is going on?" feel), but I still found it very creative and well written. It's interesting and addictive. And, the best part is it'll have you guessing over and over again.
Now, lets move on to swoon-worthy boys. This book didn't really have that much romance in it, but it does leave you with the hope and potential for more. Garrett was Sutton's boyfriend before she went missing. Now, since no one knew Sutton was missing to begin with and everyone thinks Emma *IS* Sutton, he automatically becomes- you guessed it!- Emma's boyfriend. Personally, he's not the guy for me. He's just too cookie cutter and lacked personality. I do wish the book mentioned him more, but I guess this all falls into the mystery factor.
Then there's Ethan. He's the quiet, brooding and from what I can tell, hot guy from school. I think of the two boys, Ethan is a more swoon-worthy candidate. Who doesn't love a boy who not only is a stargazer, but also reads Syvia Plath and various other poetry? He even writes his favorite lines on his arm! AH-DORABLE! The few interactions Ethan has with Emma are personally my favorite parts of the book. It's strange how even though she's pretending to be Sutton, Ethan just seems to know Emma and see through her facade. I'm definitely looking forward to more Ethan.
This is a great book for mystery lovers. Plus, if you're a fan of Sara's Pretty Little Liars series, I'll bank that you'll like The Lying Game. It's intriguing, has a hint of romance, and tons of dangerous, crazy situations. For anyone who thought the girls at your high school were mean, be prepared. You haven't seen anything yet.