Book Report: Our highly scientific analysis of a book, from the characters to the writing style to the swoon. See More...
There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom!: A member of the male species dares to step foot into our YA world. See More...

One of These Truths is a Lie

Four friends. One loney cabin in the woods. One dark secret. Brent Hartinger challenges us to find the real story in Three Truths and a Lie.

One of These Truths is a Lie

BOOK REPORT for Three Truths and a Lie by Brent Hartinger

Cover Story: Low Visibility
Drinking Buddy: Unseen Narrator
Testosterone Level: The Town That Dreaded Nightfall
Talky Talk: And Then There Were None
Bonus Factors: Let's Do the Twist
Bromance Status: It'll Never Be Like the First Time

Cover Story: Low Visibility

Rain on the windowpane or the windshield. Doesn't exactly draw the eye.

The Deal:

So after a rough week, Rob suggests he and his boyfriend Liam spend a quiet weekend away from everything. Along with Liam's best friend Mia and her boyfriend Galen, they drive off to Mia's family's extremely isolated cabin in the woods. Extremely isolated.

Things start off oddly, with the strange little town and the neighbors who seem to dislike Mia for some reason. But hey, they have the whole weekend to roast hotdogs and play games. Ever play 'Three Truths and a Lie'? How much is everyone willing to reveal about themselves?

But then things begin to get weird. Their satellite phone--their only way to communicate with the outside world--vanishes. Someone starts a fire in the trash barrel outside. Someone's messing with them.

And then things get serious. The quartet suddenly realizes they're trapped in the middle of nowhere, with no way out, no way to communicate, and targeted by an outsider who does not wish them well. Or is it an outsider?

Drinking Buddy: Unseen Narrator

Rob serves as our storyteller, who draws us into the spooky situation, making us creeped out almost from page one. He's like Nick Carroway, watching the events unfold, but influencing them very little. You see, Rob is the odd one out. Liam and Mia are best buddies, and since Liam is gay, there's nothing wrong with that. It's not like Rob sometimes feels left out. And Galen is a super cute bad boy, who kind of gets off on making Rob hot and sweaty. And then there's poor Rob, who wonders if his relationship with Liam is purely physical.

And when everything starts to break down, who can Rob trust?

Testosterone Level: The Town That Dreaded Nightfall

The bizarre happenings quickly escalate from pranks to something much more serious. And soon the acusations fly. Who's behind all this? The neighbors, who seem to resent Mia's family? The creepy people in town? Or is it someone in the cabin? Why were those guys chasing Galen last week? Was the bizarre lie Mia told during the truth game really a lie? Is Liam the wonderful boyfriend Rob thinks he is, or do his loyalties lie elsewhere?

Will they live to see the dawn?

Talky Talk: And Then There Were None

We've all been there. The isolated the location. The all-encompassing darkness. The strange companions you cannot totally trust. Wondering what on earth possessed you to volunteer to chaperone the eighth grade lock-in.

Hartinger does an excellent job of tackling this disturbing trope. Do we hunker down and wait? Risk trudging through miles of logging roads? Would I be safer with my friends, or should I go off alone? (never go off alone)

This book will leave you guessing to the very end.

Bonus Factors: Let's Do the Twist

All I can say is you'll never see the ending coming. It'll blow your mind. I can say no more.

Bromance Status: It'll Never Be Like the First Time

While I'll probably read you again at some point, it'll never top this first time. Shh. No more words.

Full Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from the author, but no money or beer.

Brian Katcher's photo About the Author: Brian Katcher wrote his first YA novel when he was down and out in Mexico. He now lives in Missouri with his wonderful wife and daughter. He divides his time between writing and working as a school librarian. Brian still misses the preachy YA books of the eighties.