Cadence Sinclair comes from the perfect family – beautiful and wealthy – with their own private island off Cape Cod. Each summer the Sinclairs gather there, each family ensconced in their own lovely home. Cadence and Johnny and Mirren (her cousins) and Gat (a friend) have been inseparable since they were small children. They are the “Liars”. Until the summer when Cadence is fifteen and is involved in a mysterious accident, leaving her with memory loss and debilitating migraines. Over the course of the next two years Cadence struggles, through a haze of pain and pain killers, to understand what really happened that summer. When she returns to the island for the summer of her seventeenth year Cadence finds that much has changed, but will she find out why? And what really happened during that lost summer?
I loved the romance between Gat and Cadence, which had both moments of sadness and sweetness. Cadence’s depression and frustration as she struggles to recall the lost summer, while dealing with her difficult and odd family, was poignant. While the book addresses issues of class and wealth, the issues surrounding dysfunctional families and friendship are far more central to the story.
So, the ending. I didn’t see it coming. And it was horrible, shocking, and touching. If someone asks me about it, I guess I’ll have to be a Liar…
Title: We Were Liars
Author: E. Lockhart
Genre: Fiction, Young Adult
Publication: Delacorte Press, May 2014