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The Lying Game #2: Never Have I Ever by [Shepard, Sara]
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The Lying Game #2: Never Have I Ever Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 138 customer reviews
Book 2 of 6 in The Lying Game (6 Book Series)
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Editorial Reviews


Praise for The Lying Game:“The Lying Game is a stay-up-past-your-bedtime type of thriller…full of amazingly believable plot twists and turns.” (Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA) (Starred Review) )

“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 the #1 New York Times bestselling series Pretty Little Liars. She graduated from NYU and has an MFA from Brooklyn College. Sara has lived in New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Arizona, where the Lying Game series is set.

Product Details

  • File Size: 848 KB
  • Print Length: 323 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTeen (August 2, 2011)
  • Publication Date: August 2, 2011
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004MMEIB4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #127,668 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In this installment of Sara Shepard's "The Lying Game" series, Emma Paxton finds herself delving deeper into the mysterious life of her- now dead- twin sister, Sutton Mercer. The unknown murderer seems to be watching her every step and she must carefully maneuver maintaining a low-key investigation into her sister's death whilst not alerting the killer to her intentions.

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.
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Format: Hardcover
I will admit that I loved this book but I'll also admit that although it was typical Shepard fare, at times it would have passages that sort of dragged.

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.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is book 2 in a series. I bought the first book without paying attention to the fact that it was one book in a series, of six books no less! Unhappy with myself for not paying attention, I found the story too addicting to just let go. So, in book two, we continue.

And at the end of book two, we still don’t know who killed Sutter. I am resigned to buying all books in the series, but I’ll do so as I read them. In this book, we examine several suspects. Emma, and the ghostly Sutton, examine and reflect on the motives of all her friends, and even her sister Laurel. Suspects are vetted, trusted, and suspected again. The half paranormal pair examine jealous rivals. All of this sleuth work takes place with a background of unusual, dangerous, and cruel pranks that all characters seem to feel comfortable playing on each other, friend and foe alike.

And then, not a spoiler, at the end of book two yet another mysterious character appears. This is enjoyable reading, good writing, and I feel motivating for readers working with English as a second language.

On to book three.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
*Could contain spoilers if you have not read the first book*

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.
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