We Were Liars

Book Blurb:
A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense novel from National Book Award finalist and Printz Award honoree E. Lockhart. 

A bit of the Story:

Cadence’ s memory is scattered. She tries to remember the whole of summer seventeen what happened two years ago, what led to her swimming alone in the sea, what led to her head splitting migraines, what led to her being a medicine drug addict. She tries hard- jotting down events as they appear in her mind in the graph paper, sticking notes to her bed side, assumptions, suppositions, etc. No one would talk to her about it- not her cousins- the liars, not the aunties, not the littles, not even grandpa.

Riches, heritage, square chin, blood line of Sinclair family- best in America. They are weird. They spend money to erase their past. Never talk about pain or weakness, just flaunt wide smile. Feels so spooky, abnormal, strange. Sinclairs are mysterious, secrecy behind their glamorous façade.

My thoughts:

You can feel the suspense building up, but around what, you can’t really point that out. The tension is heightening slowly, and you just know that something bad is about to happen, something has happened that Cadence’s memory refuses to remember. It’s downright scary. Kind of psychological. You just don’t know what is a lie? Which one was a lie? Who is to be believed? Are the sequence of events even true at all?  Nail biting . Page turner. Awesome use of words and phrases in the narrative. The chapters with fairy tales and fables in between relate to some of the characters and help us understand the story better in an unusual way. Experimental narrative. Deception.
"Mirren. She is sugar. She is curiosity and rain."
"Johnny. He is bounce. He is effort and snark."

"Gat,my Gat. He is contemplation and enthusiasm. Ambition and strong coffee."
There’s a pattern to it all – it’s scary, like someone is playing a mind game and you am not able to decipher it. The narration is kind of dark, with secrets hidden in patterns- sentence patterns. She creates an edgy, mysterious narrative. Lyrical tone. Poetic Prose. Uses writers’ license. Twists grammar, to create magic in meaning. A lot of symbolism. Metaphor through retellings of certain fairy tales with introduced variations. And the repetition. Maniacal repetition. Words keep repeating – ivory, suboptimal, Sit up, act normal , be normal.

"Be normal, now. Right now. Because you are. Because you can be."

In the end the plot twists end up revealing a shocking tragedy, horror of loss, and many more unexpected details. But, you’d also realize that the writer has given so many hints throughout.

WOW Factors:

This is a smart book- you won’t enjoy it unless you love metaphors, deciphering verses, poetry, have a knack for surrealism, reading between the lines, having an eye out for those subtle clues as to find what is really happening. If you do, then this book can get really addictive, sub-neurotic. You would like the process of trying to figure things out when you can’t even rely on the narrator- she herself doesn’t remember half the things. It’s brilliant, in a way. It will make you think, when you are not even trying to think.

The book is rather short, short crisp narrative, short chapters – brevity creates magic here. My Rating - 5/5 stars.

"I will prove myself strong, when they think I am sick.
I will prove myself brave, when they think I am weak."

"You know how, when you come to Beechwood, it’s a different world? You don’t have to be who you are back home. You can be somebody better,
maybe. "

About The Author:

E. LOCKHART is the author of four books about Ruby Oliver: The Boyfriend List, The Boy Book, The Treasure Map of Boys, and Real Live Boyfriends. She also wrote Fly on the Wall, Dramarama, and How to Be Bad (the last with Sarah Mlynowski and Lauren Myracle). Her novel The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks was a Michael L. Printz Award Honor Book, a finalist for the National Book Award, and winner of a Cybils Award for Best Young Adult Novel. Visit E. online at emilylockhart.com and follow @elockhart on Twitter.


Queeristan by Parmesh Sahani

  Queeristan (Amazon Link) Thanks to Audible Free Trial I listened to this amazing non-fiction on LGBTQ inclusion in Indian workplaces. Author Parmesh Sahani identifies as gay Indian, working closely with Godrej higher management and employees for years to create an inclusive workplace, both legally and in spirit. This book is a result of those years of experience, research, collaboration with individuals from difference spectrum of the society and organizations who has successfully transitioned into a queer friendly one.   Indian history is inclusive. From the Khajuraho temple architectures, to Konark to the Rig Veda, there is existing proofs even 2000 years ago of Indian inclusiveness of queer. It’s the draconian British law that criminalised it, which was scraped in 2009, came into effect once again following a sad judgement in 2013 and eventually was scraped off for good in 2018. I am in awe of the lawyers who fought this legal battle- colleagues and partners – Arundhati Katju

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