Reviews for Liar

AudioFile Reviews 2010 April
What if the boy who cried wolf wasn't just a liar? What if HE was a wolf? In Larbalestier's striking time-tripping novel, 17-year-old Micah is the ultimate in unreliable narrators. Her boyfriend has been killed. The book hangs on that whodunit, and on a supernatural tale of a werewolf (or maybe not), all delivered from Micah's point of view. But Micah is a liar, as she repeatedly reminds us. Waites makes us long to believe Micah as she speaks in a warm, anchoring voice that belies the character herself. Waites pulls us in--only to startle us at the end with a tone that turns the story on its head. Her inviting delivery makes it impossible to distinguish psychopathic murder from the way of the wolf. It's clearly easier to be a canis lupus in Central Park than a troubled teen in Manhattan. Wolves, at least, don't lie. M.M.C. (c) AudioFile 2010, Portland, Maine

School Library Journal Reviews 2010 February

Gr 9 Up--That Micah Wilkins is a self-professed liar is about the only thing you can be sure of in this gripping, engrossing novel (Bloomsbury, 2009) by Justine Larbalestier that begs for discussion. Micah's life is irrevocably changed when the boy she had a secret relationship with is found brutally murdered and she is considered a suspect. The narrative shifts between "Before" and "After" the murder with occasional breaks for "Family History" and "History of Me," detailing, among other things, the family illness that she claims is at the heart of all her lies. Micah takes the unreliable narrator to new heights, keeping listeners off balance by sometimes sticking to the "truth" for long stretches before coming clean and, at others times, admitting to lies only moments after telling them. Channie Waites delivers a very strong and believable performance as the complex and often frustrating teen protagonist, shifting moods as seamlessly as Micah does and revealing all of her attitude, emotion, and vulnerability. By the end of this extraordinary book, listeners will either be desperate to discuss it with others or ready to delve right back in to listen again in an effort to figure out the truth--and most will probably want to do both.--Amanda Raklovits, Champaign Public Library, Douglass Branch, IL

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