This review took me forever to write. I think it’s probably because of how I felt about it – I was kind of “meh.” I didn’t LOVE it, but I didn’t really dislike it, either.
After seeing all the amazing reviews for Seven Ways We Lie, I had really high hopes for it. However, when I started reading it, it just felt kind of slow and I had a hard time keeping my interest in the book. I seem to be the black sheep when it comes to this one, because so many others have written such glowing reviews about it; but I just could not get into this book, no matter how hard I tried. I even attempted to take a break from it and read another book in between, but when I came back to it, I realized that I still wasn’t being blown away by this book. In all honesty, I found it to be a little a lackluster and boring – not a lot happened, at least not until the end of the book.
The reason that I’m giving this book three stars is because I really did like some of the characters. I liked Olivia, Matt, and Lucas, and found their parts of the story to be the most interesting.
The book starts off with the knowledge that someone in the school is dating a teacher. We don’t know how the school found out about this, but someone had to have told (later in the book, you do find out who told), and we don’t really know who the student is, either (again, we eventually do find out, but you can pretty much draw conclusions right away). During the course of this scandal, the POV changes quite a few times – seven. So we get to see what goes on in the lives of seven students from Paloma High. To be honest, most of them aren’t really all that interesting – some of their stories are kind of fun at first, because you’ll want to try and match up the characters to the seven sins that you see on the front cover (I admit, that was probably my favorite part of the whole book). But in reality, not a lot happens. Sure we get to meet and connect with a lot of characters, but at the same time, that many viewpoints and chapters makes it even more difficult to connect to them, in my opinion. It made it feel like the book was just going in a whole bunch of different directions at first, until I started getting into the swing of things.
Eventually when the characters you didn’t think would really interact begin interacting, it starts getting better. We learn that everyone has secrets that they keep in order to protect themselves – whether it’s a secret about your sexuality or a secret involving abandonment issues.
I had a really easy time figuring out which student was going to be the one in the relationship with the teacher, and to be honest, that whole aspect of the book was kind of disappointing. The other characters’ secrets were far more interesting than that, in my opinion.
Bottom line? The whole idea for this book was brilliant – I just felt like it could been executed better.
Note: I received an ARC copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.