Release Date: March 24th, 2015
Rating: 4 out of 5
It’s pretty rare for me to find a murder mystery that is well-written AND unpredictable. Most of the time the murderer is someone who doesn’t make sense at all, or the execution of the story was just plain awful. So when I read the synopsis for Liars, Inc., I was a little doubtful. However, Paula Stokes is also the author of Venom, a historical romance/mystery under the name of Fiona Paul, which I highly enjoyed. It had mystery and intrigue, so I trusted Paula to do the same in her contemporary mystery. Luckily, Liars, Inc. did not fail to disappoint me.
Liars, Inc. follows the story of three friends: Max, Parvati, and Preston. Max is the main character, a boy who is adopted and even once a runaway. Parvati is half-Indian (yay diversity!), and also Max’s girlfriend. Preston is their friend, the most popular boy at school and also the Senator’s son. These three characters are all spunky yet unique in their own way. I really enjoyed the idea of the group they form, Liars, Inc., in which they make their money off of students at school, and how this “innocent” act progresses into the murder story. From the start, the readers want to love these new characters, but they all seem to be hiding something.
The mystery is just WOW. I was not expecting the person to be THE MURDERER and it was so intricately put together. I’m honestly really impressed with this murder mystery! The execution is done well and I think readers are in for one helluva ride. Almost every chapter reveals something new, but also allows the reader to ask more questions afterward. Liars, Inc. is definitely a page-turner in this sense. I couldn’t put it down!
The one minor downfall is in Max’s character. As mentioned previously, he was once a runaway, and has jumped from home to home. He’s rebellious and gets into a lot of trouble. At one point, he’s interrogated by the cops, but he’s quite a smart-mouth. It was a little frustrating to see Max dig himself into a deeper hole as he straight up avoids the FBI’s questions and goes so far to even lie to them. Then again, that IS how the plot kicks off… I should mention though that this story is told from Max’s perspective (go male POVs!), so the choices he makes are understandable.
To wrap up, Liars, Inc. surprised me for the better with its messed-up, spunky characters and intensely unpredictable murder mystery. As it says in the synopsis, fans of I Hunt Killers (which I read and loved!) will definitely enjoy this one as well. I can’t wait to read more by Paula Stokes!