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Beautiful Lies Hardcover – August 7, 2012

3.8 out of 5 stars 46 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 8 Up-In this paranormal thriller, Alice goes missing from her identical twin, Rachel, and some friends at a carnival. Orphaned at age 9, the 18-year-olds have a supernatural connection: each can feel physical trauma experienced by the other. When Rachel arrives home alone, she begs Aunt Sharon and Uncle Jeff to alert the police immediately about Alice's disappearance, certain that her sister has been harmed. Their guardians choose not to panic, and cite Alice's criminal record and unpredictable behavior, but after Rachel discovers that she has a head wound, they agree to act. Rachel's forebodings are fraught with memory lapses and visions, quickly revealing her to be an unreliable narrator. When she divulges that there is a stolen duffle bag containing $10,000 under her bed and that she has a history of switching places with her twin, the story becomes increasingly confusing. Red herrings abound with potential abductors, including a mysterious artist-boyfriend; a nosy boy next door; a shady restaurant boss; Homeless Harvey, the creepy town lurk-about; and others. The paranormal elements add suspense and seem easier to digest than the notion that close friends and relatives would be unable to tell these twins apart, given their polar personalities. Two minor characters-developmentally delayed cousin Charlie and bighearted friend Kimber-are well developed and empathetic, adding stability to the wandering plot. However the payoff of all the confusion is dramatic: a bombshell ending that readers won't see coming.-Vicki Reutter, Cazenovia High School, NYα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


“There's mystery upon mystery here, but they're all imbued with tenderness and tragedy, and the final, supernaturally touched puzzle is genuinely surprising and original.” ―BCCB, starred review

“The novel's tension and persuasive sense of dread should captivate readers.” ―Publishers Weekly

“An excellent recreational read for young adults looking for genuine shock and surprise.” ―VOYA

“The twins' culturally barren, dreary yet violent worlda realm of broken dreams--resonates...in this haunting, moody, character-driven thriller.” ―Kirkus Reviews

“It's been a while since The Lovely Bones was in every high school backpack; this is a strong contender to take its place.” ―BCCB, starred review, on Between

“Dramatic and unpredictable . . . A page-turner to the bittersweet ending.” ―Kirkus Reviews, starred review, on Where the Truth Lies

“A perfect read for teens who like complex characters.” ―Booklist, starred review, on Between

“Achingly realistic . . . with rare, refreshing honesty and flashes of wry humor.” ―Booklist, starred review, on Breathless

“Characterization is vivid and exquisite . . . tender and intimate.” ―BCCB, starred review, on Breathles

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 - 17 years
  • Grade Level: 7 - 12
  • Lexile Measure: 720L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Walker Childrens (August 7, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802723381
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802723383
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 1.4 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,923,221 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Chels on September 3, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Warman has written a great Young Adult psychological thriller. Alice and Rachel are twins, but twins that are so identical that no one can tell them apart. They have a special bond, too. If one is hit, the other feels pain. This phenomenon is how Alice knows that her sister is in danger. Rachel disappears and Alice begins experiencing pain. Who can Alice trust? She keeps her sister's disappearance a secret and searches for the abductor.
Beautiful Lies confused me at times and I am still figuring out the story right now, even though I finished the book. Despite this, I definitely enjoyed reading. I loved the plot twists and turns and reading about the bond between Alice and Rachel. This book will be loved by teen readers and anyone who likes mystery.
The only complaint I had while reading is that the narrator is not someone you can trust. I will not spoil any of the novel, but thought that readers should be warned. Alice is not a girl who always speaks the truth. Beautiful Lies was a wild ride and earns four out of five stars.

*Review copy provided, this does not affect my opinion in any way*
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Format: Hardcover
This book kept me guessing, I sure can say that. There are so many factors, and I am not really able to trust any of the information given to me.
I felt like I knew where the missing twin was several times, and where something was off, but I never could piece everything completely together.
I think that Jessica Warman was very brave with the ending, and at first I thought it was opposite of what she intended, but I think that I am okay with it. It's definitely not wrapped in a pretty little bow, but the storyline is tied up and the sorrow is laced with sacrifice.
I wasn't completely in love with this book, but on the other hand, I had to know what happened.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Grade: C-

Alice and Rachel, monochorionic, monoamniotic twins (identical, who share one amniotic sac and one placenta) can feel each other's pain. When one is bruised, a mark appears on the other. When one twin goes missing, the other is determined to find her. But which sister is actually missing? Rachel, the smarter, "good" twin, or Alice, the more troubled sister. Is the missing sister dead, and is the twin left behind okay, or mentally ill like her mother and grandmother?

BEAUTIFUL LIES is my fourth Jessica Warman novel I've read this week, any my least favorite. I read each of her other novels in one day, this one took two. For the first third of the book, I had to pause to remind myself how to differentiate the twins, since many of their traits were similar, at lease according to whichever twin narrated the novel. At various points, I wondered if perhaps the twins were one person with a split personality, if one twin had died with their parents nine years before, if the twin narrating was delusional, something didn't feel right. Whichever twin was left behind, narrating the story. I felt empathy for her, hoped, but doubted, her sister was okay, and rooted for a positive resolution. The backstory of twins, orphaned at nine, now living with their aunt, uncle and intellectually disabled cousin. Like many people, twins have always fascinated me, particularly identical ones.

I enjoy Warman's writing style, though BEAUTIFUL LIES lacked the quicker pace of her other books, bogged down with excess description. BEAUTIFUL LIES also lacked the interesting minor characters of her other novels as well. The resolution lacked luster and could have gone any number of ways, almost like a toss up.

I can't really recommend or not recommend BEAUTIFUL LIES, which might seem like a copout. After reading reviews I expected an okay read. I was neither disappointed nor pleasantly surprised.
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Format: Hardcover
Beautiful Lies has been getting some awesome reviews and I was very eager to check it out. I had high hopes for this one since it sounded so unique and interesting. While it was definitely a unique story I did not find myself interested in it at all. Sadly this one did not meet my expectations.

There is something about Jessica Warman's writing style that I just don't like and for the life of me, I can't put my finger on what it is. I have tried reading a handful of her books and no matter how much everyone else loves them I always find myself let down. Beautiful Lies has a very interesting premise and I was positive I would love it. Mystery, suspense, some paranormal elements possibly? What's not to love? However once I started it I was supremely bored with the story and I just wanted to be done with it. If I was the type of reader who could DNF a book, I definitely would have stopped reading this one. I did stick with it though hoping that there would be something to redeem it and while I didn't completely hate it, I just didn't like it.

Alice and Rachel are completely different girls according to family and friends but I had a hard time telling them apart when reading about them. Their personalities were too similar. I had to check to see which one I was actually reading about. And then there was the whole switching places thing. If these two girls were so different from each other, how come their friends and family couldn't tell when they switched places? There just seemed to be too many holes in the story and I couldn't help but pick it apart.

One of the biggest problems for me was how long the book was. Beautiful Lies was over 400 pages and I honestly didn't see the point of so many things that were included in the story.
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