My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The Lying Game is the first book in Shepard's The Lying Game series, which is pretty obvious, but I felt like informing you regardless. The premise of the book involves three things I have very-little-to-no experience with in my entire history of reading:
1) identical twins
3) such well-done and dramatic TENSION
Ms. Sara Shepard is the Goddess of Tension. She kinda seriously needs this shirt.
1) Identical Twins
The only book I think I've ever read that stars identical twins is Identical, but that is on such a different wavelength than The Lying Game that they're pretty hard to compare. The plot of The Lying Game revolves around long-lost twin sisters, Emma and Sutton, who arrange to meet in Sutton's current town of residency (I think I remember it being Tucson!). Emma stumbles upon a YouTube video of Sutton being strangled with a necklace by a mysterious figure, and the video has no sound, so she can't tell who the strangler is. She hunts Sutton down on Facebook and arranages to meet in Tucson. There's only one problem with this arrangement: Sutton is dead.
And that, my friends, is the big bomb that drops in the introduction/prologue of The Lying Game: Sutton is dead, and she's watching over everything Emma does.
Emma goes to Tucson to meet Sutton, snd she is coerced into pretending to be Sutton (after all, they're identical twins, and they look exactly the same) to figure out who murdered her.
To me, this premise is ingenious, for one because it's never been done before (like the overused I-don't-know-what-you-are-but-I-love-you-anyway trope that occurs in 99.8% of YA PNR) and for two because it's just SO FREAKING COOL!
The topic of becoming another identity has interested me for the longest time, and it's probably one of the reasons I was so drawn to this book. The way Shepard writes Emma, Sutton and their differences is mind-blowing. She's truly a talented woman.
3) The Tension
Oh my God the tension.
Shepard writes tension like high school students write crappy essays. Except, without the crappy part. And without the essays part. And with the tension part.
Be warned if you're going to read this: the tension is so high you will never want to put it down. Not unless the next one is within a ten-mile radius of you and you have a car or some other valid type of transportation excluding your feet of course because who wants to walk ten miles just to get a sequel, especially if the weather isn't nice and you're not presentable and you don't want to do anything except sit there and think about the book you just read and its sequel which is not in your hands but it should be but it's not?
The one thing I didn't like about the book: the product placements. I'm pretty sure there were above 10 iPhone references, not to mention countless other things. It kind of dragged down the story for me. It was still great, but it could've used a little less iThing references.