We Were Liars is a 2014 young-adult novel written by E. Lockhart. The novel has received critical acclaim and won the Goodreads Choice Award for Best Young Adult Fiction.
We Were Liars centered on the theme of the consequences of one’s mistakes. On the wealthy, seemingly perfect Sinclair family, who spend every summer sitting gathered on their private island. However, not every summer is the same: when something happens to Cadence during the summer of her fifteenth year, the four “Liars” (Cadence, Johnny, Gat, and Mirren) re-emerge two years later to prompt Cadence to remember the incident.
|Book Name||We Were Liars|
|Genre||Young adult fiction, psychological thriller|
|Date of Publication||May 13th, 2014|
|No. of Page||320|
We Were Liars Age Rating
We Were Liars rated 13+ for some kissing scenes, bad language, alcohol, drug use, and injuries, but I would say it is pretty appropriate for a mature kid. I put down 13+ because it isn’t a super mature book, and yet I would recommend someone a bit older to read it because you will fully understand the book at an older age.
We Were Liars Parents Guide
|This book does include strong language, as well as topics like drugs, mental illness, death, and racism. Later into the book it got became very dark.|
|Kissing and sensual exploration with shirts off, but no graphic details.|
|Mentions sexual intercourse but never acts on it.|
|Violence and death are themes, but not always in a literal sense.|
|When Cady falls victim to migraines or fantasies, the images she conjures up are bloody and brutal.|
|Cady also has suicide fantasies, imagining herself to be “a beautiful corpse.”|
|A terrible accident does cause people to die.|
|Underage and adult drinking and drunkenness. Cadence takes Percocet for pain and admits she’s possibly addicted to it.|
|Swear words are infrequent but powerful when used: “ass,” “damn,” “God,” “Jesus,” “bulls–t,” “s–tty,” “f–ck,” “f–cking,” “f–ckload,” “f–cked up.”|
We Were Liars Summary
In We Were Liars by E. Lockhart (Emily Jenkins), Cadence Sinclair Eastman, who is nearly eighteen, tells her story and how she got herself into such a predicament. Cadence brings us on a bumpy ride of her life story as she tries to connect the dots herself. Cadence or Cad had a horrible accident the made her lose memories and sustain migraines often the not even medications can fix. Cad works through her disabled mind and digs to find the truth about her accident.
All this includes encounters with romance, pain, adventure, and filling in the blanks about what happened to her. With spacy memories and a brain that can’t remember things from the day before, I could tell I would like the book from the beginning because of the sudden description and juicy words. It was a short read, but I think it was because I devoted almost every free moment to this book. After all, it was so intriguing.
As Cadence is working through reliving her past life and rebuilding her memories, she is also working through emotions and family feuds. This adds to the whole of the story in just the right ways because it keeps the reader from focusing on just one aspect of the story and therefore advances the reader’s concentration on the story of Cadence’s life.
Cadence’s grandfather is rich as can be and owns his private island off the coast of Massachusetts. The family or the Sinclairs visit the island every summer and stay in one of the four luxurious houses. Cad comes up with the idea of becoming charitable and starts a giveaway project that requires her to give away her stuff, even if it has a sentimental value to her or her family.
Throughout the book, there are little stories that I believe were written by Cadence that seem to relate to her life stories and what she is coming up with and learning about throughout the process of rebuilding her memories and relationships.
Always do what you’re afraid to do.E. Lockhart, We Were Liars
We Were Liars Characters
- Cadence Sinclair Eastman: The oldest Sinclair grandchild and narrator of the book
- Gatwick Matthew Patil: The nephew of Aunt Carrie’s partner, Ed.
- Johnny Sinclair Dennis: Carrie’s oldest child, born three weeks after Cadence, second oldest Sinclair grandchild
- Mirren Sinclair Sheffield: Bess’s oldest daughter, third oldest Sinclair grandchild
- Harris Sinclair: The wealthy patriarch of the family
- Tipper Sinclair: Matriarch of the family, married to Harris
- Penny Sinclair Eastman: Cadence’s mother and the youngest Sinclair daughter
- Carrie Sinclair Dennis: Mother to Jonathan and Will, oldest Sinclair daughter
- Bess Sinclair Sheffield: Mother to Mirren, Liberty, Bonnie, and Taft, the middle Sinclair daughter
- Will Sinclair Dennis: Cadence’s youngest cousin, son of Carrie
- Taft Sinclair Sheffield: Second youngest cousin, son of Bess
- Bonnie Sinclair Sheffield: Twin to Liberty, daughter of Bess
- Liberty Sinclair Sheffield: Twin to Bonnie, daughter of Bess
We Were Liars REVIEW
The writing style is very poetic. I like how it delves into issues of race and class in a simple way younger readers could understand. Also, “Her parents’ dramatic divorce leaves Cady with horrible migraines. She finds comfort at Beechwood Island with her cousins, particularly with a stepcousin named Gat.”?
The story was beautiful. It was raw and perfectly imperfect. It was so easy to fall in love with the characters, even those you don’t want to fall in love with, and the characters were so rounded and thought out.
It is such an intricate book and what makes it so difficult but clever is that it is all about family dynamics which can be difficult for the most part.
E. Lockhart does such a terrific job at capturing the manipulative Grandpa and the needy aunts. And I love how that main character sees the faults in her mom instead of being blinded by bias.
Silence is a protective coating over pain.E. Lockhart, We Were Liars
OFFICIAL WEBSITE: emilylockhart.com
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