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The Lying Game #2: Never Have I Ever Paperback – July 31, 2012
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“A thrilling mystery with just the right doses of romance and danger.” (School Library Journal)
“A fun and fast-moving mystery…[readers] will race through the pages as Emma pieces together clues and will have plenty to ponder as they anticipate the next installment.” (Publishers Weekly)
About the Author
Sara Shepard is the author of two New York Times bestselling series, Pretty Little Liars and The Lying Game, as well as the series The Perfectionists. She graduated from New York University and has an MFA from Brooklyn College.
More About the Author
I've always been a writer. I made up stories about my sister's blanket, BeeBee, when I was four. From there I wrote about squareheaded creatures, an environmental saga about little yellow men who live in vegetable gardens, teenage dramas well before I was a teenager, a book series about a Japanese girl who finds out her ancestors are samaurai (and she must be one, too), a bunch of arty short stories, and some books that maybe you've heard of. The PRETTY LITTLE LIARS series is based on my experiences there...kind of. Sort of a hyperbolic version of them. Plus some random stuff thrown in.
I've also written THE LYING GAME, which is about a dead twin and an alive twin, THE HEIRESSES, which is about a rich family's curse, and THE PERFECTIONISTS, which is about five somewhat strangers who get everything they wanted...but that comes at a price. I wrote THE VISIBLES, which is about jackalopes and mental illness, and EVERYTHING WE EVER WANTED, which features a guy who discovers his ex lives on a commune.
Top Customer Reviews
In all honesty, this book is a bit slow. There's a lack of events happening and a lot of the plot happens inside Emma's or Sutton's head. Obviously, we're at a point in the story where many of her conclusions come from very little physical events and moreso the subtle words passed among the characters that are exacerbated to fit Emma/Sutton's own paranoia. The mix of inner dialogue and flashbacks paints the picture of Emma's mental state; she is a confused mess. In a genius way, it's as frustrating to the reader as it should be for our main character. This is honestly, Shepard's genius, creating a character in an extraneous situation that involves the reader in such a way that the reader ends up feeling similar emotions as to what the character is thinking. We're just as confused as Emma is. As shocking as some situations appear to be, readers may not be able to identify, but they can understand. Thankfully, the book does speed up throughout the second half.
The book is enumerated with witty one-liners (though not as many as the last book, or anything in the PLL series), deranged plot twists, and unfortunately a severe lack of character development. Shepard seems to be relying on Emma's "every-girl" quality; she fits any role that is demanded of her (as is stated many times in TLG1). Unfortunately, Shepard uses this as a cop-out on any real character development for the live twin, Emma.Read more ›
Let me start off with the good. This book was a very addictive read that I just wasn't able to put down and as such, I was able to finish it in one night. The mystery of "who killed Sutton and why do they want Emma to act as her" is intriguing. It's fun to guess at who it could be as well as cultivate different theories about who is most likely to have done the crime and it's also fun to have those theories smashed to bits by little clues here and there. (I have one theory that so far I'm pretty convinced is pretty solid.)
The bad? Well, there's a few scenes that just sort of dragged. I don't really know how many times we need to have Emma and Ethan circle around each other, feel someone watching them, or have one of them suspect the same characters over and over. It gets a little tedious. Not overly so, but enough to where I can't help but feel that the book is deliberately treading water in order to lengthen the series as much as possible. Frankly put, this could have easily been melded into book one with very little worries about overly condensing anything because nothing big really happens.
That leads me to my biggest concern: that this is going to get the PLL treatment. This is not a series that needs to be stretched out into umpteen books and Never Have I Ever really gives the impression that the publisher is going to try to milk as many books as possible out of the storyline. It's this sort of treatment that kept this book from being as good as it could have been. This just felt a little too watered down. From any other author this wouldn't be that bad, but I've read Shepard before and I know she can do better than this.
Also I'm not so sure about the T.V. series. I'll definitely watch the pilot but I can already tell the T.V. series will have to change a lot from the book in order to make it work.
If you have read the first book then you know Emma has her hands full playing the part of Sutton, her dead twin. The Killer is out their amongst them and a cloud of doubt is very big in regards to if your friends hand anything to do with it. All she know is that she must continue to play Sutton, and Ethan is her only friend who knows that she is not Sutton.
In Never Have I Ever, she starts piecing together more of Sutton's life and what she was doing around the time of her death. As she checks off her list of suspects, mainly her friends. She thinks she knows who the killer/s might be and sets out to try and figure out a way to call them out.
Danger lurks in every corner though as Emma, has a few mishaps and always feels like someone is watching her. Ethan and Emma grows closer, but doesn't really want to get involved with a guy while all of this is looming over her.
Gabby and Lili really want to be a part of The Lying Game Club and will go at great lengths to prove they can be just as evil as the rest of the clique. Emma is really suspicious of the twitter twins motives when it comes to a lot of things and doesn't trust them.
As Sutton's ghost starts regaining bits and pieces of her memories we get to put more of the puzzle together on what happened at the train tracks, etc.
The Lying Game continues in Never Have I Ever, and I really enjoyed the book. I have never really been one for these types of books, but I am really curious to know who killed Sutton. I am not really a fan of long drawn out series so I really hope The Lying Game is not like Pretty Little Liars, because I don't know if I will last that long.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I can't quit turning the (screen) pages! Interested to find out what really happened. If you liked Pretty Little Liars, you'll like this one!Published 15 days ago by sara
Entertaining and quick read. I feel like all the books will take the same shape in this series.Published 3 months ago by K. Hays
It may not be a deep thoughtful novel, but it keeps you guessing and wanting to read the next book.Published 6 months ago by Whit
I am addicted to this series! I love the suspense in each book, but what else should I expect with the author of PLL?!Published 7 months ago by Beth
Great book. Well written and easy to follow. Good follow up to The Lying Game.Published 8 months ago by Luv2shopOnline4Dayz
Never Have I Ever was an amazing sequel. In the second installment of the Lying Game series, Emma starts to find out much more. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Krystianna Straley
Loved the series... was nothing like the show. Although maybe a little more action would have been nice . But my overall opinion enjoyed the twinsPublished 10 months ago by Amazon Customer