on March 8th 2016
Amazon・ Good Books・Book Depository
Seven students. Seven (deadly) sins. One secret.
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—from Kat, the thespian who conceals her trust issues onstage, to 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 seven unlikely allies at the heart of it all, the collision of their seven ordinary-seeming lives results in extraordinary change.
Seven Ways We Lie was purchased and thrust into my unwitting hands by the lovely Sass, one of my favourite book pushers, as an early Christmas present. Despite the fact that I don’t read contemporary. Despite the fact that I have no interest in Teacher/Student relationships, despite the fact that I’m a miserable miser who hasn’t properly picked up a book in almost a year.
Everyone needs a Sass in their lives. Apparently, I needed this book too.
Reading this world set in Paloma Heights was like a breath of fresh air. Feminist, flawed characters, real pain, and secrets. So many secrets. There we some characters I liked right away (Olivia) and some characters I took a long time to like (Claire). And some I just plain never understood (Juniper). But I could never say I walked away from this book being a lesser person. Despite not liking Claire, I felt like I learned the most from her, felt her pain the most. So even in the parts that made me maddeningly angry, I found something to take away from in this book.
So, the book is about seven students – and one of them is having an affair with a teacher. Each student represents one of the seven deadly sins and most characters, in the end, over come their sin and find a way to heal.
Let me tell you though, that there were things I definitely loved about this book – and one of them was the rep.
First of all, we have a feminist kick ass main character who does not apologise for who she sleeps with, when and where. It was amazing. Then we have a pansexual character which just filled my heart with joy. It’s on the paper, btw. That’s how he ID’s – as pansexual. I could sing with joy.
There is a character who pretty much sings to being Ace but never actually says it on page, this also made me happy for all my Ace friends out there who could do with the rep.
There’s also cultural diversity a little bit which is, not going to lie, much needed to break up the otherwise white bread fest that this book would have been without it.
I thought the book was very well plotted and executed with enough meat to keep it going, unlike a common pitfall of contemporaries where there’s just not enough plot. Yet it still carries the best aspects of a contemporary by making its characters shine, and being character driven.
Over all, I loved this book and highly recommend you put it on your radar.