What would you do if you woke up one morning and everything was different? After a terrible accident that leaves fifteen year-old Cadence Sinclair Eastman with crippling migraines and no memory of the events of that summer, she struggles to get her life back to “normal”. Cady reflects, “I used to be blond, but now my hair is black. I used to be strong, but now I am weak. I used to be pretty, but now I look sick”(Lockhart, p. 4). Two years after the accident, seventeen year-old Cady returns to her family’s summer home. She is determined to piece together her fragmented memories of the accident, rid herself of the excessive materiality eating away at her “perfect” family, and regain the spark in her relationship with her (maybe) boyfriend. As memories slowly return and the truth of her accident is revealed, however, Cady realizes that she will never get her old life back. She must learn to live with a new “normal”.
Mental illness/injury, family conflicts and questions of belonging, love, and loss are just a few of the central themes that adolescent readers may connect with on a personal level. The text itself mirrors Cady’s own development and self-discovery, through a process of revelation and movement backward and forward in time. A powerful novel that blurs the boundary between fantasy and reality and ends with a heart-wrenching twist, We Were Liars will keep suspense-loving adolescent readers eager to turn the page.
Lockhart, E. We Were Liars. New York: Delacorte, 2014. Print.