When E. Lockhart’s novel We Were Liars was released in 2014, it was met with immediate acclaim and went on to win a slew of awards. In this young-adult novel, mistakes can have deadly consequences, which is one of its major themes. In addition to family, privilege, and self-acceptance, the book touches on these topics. As a result, the book has become one of the best-known in recent memory thanks to its memorable ending. It’s a good idea to check out the following books in the same vein as We Were Liars.
The Walls Around Us
by Nova Run Suma
New York Times best-seller The Walls Around Us is another young adult novel. This book was written by American author Nova Ren Suma and published in 2015. There are three main characters in this novel, all of whom have some sort of connection to one another. Two of the women are in prison on murder charges, while the third has connections to both of the other two. In the following sections, the story alternates between the perspectives of two characters. The Walls Around Us is a gritty story with plenty of shocking revelations, despite the presence of paranormal elements.
Charm & Strange
by Stephanie Kuehn
‘Charm & Strange’ is Stephanie Kuehn’s debut young adult novel. When Andrew Winston Winters is battling with his own demons in this novel, it was nominated for the William C Morris Award in 2014. A terrible secret from Andrew’s past is slowly becoming clearer to him in each chapter, but it’s still a mystery. Andrew’s past is revisited several times in the story, which takes place in the present. The story tackles a lot of difficult topics, but the buildup to the twists is fascinating to piece together.
Cracked Up To Be
by Courtney Summers
Courtney Summers’ first novel, Cracked Up To Be, was published in 2009. Young adult novel about Parker Fadley, a girl with a terrible secret that is threatening to ruin her entire existence In an effort to be completely alone, Parker quits the cheerleading squad, dumps her perfect boyfriend, and even starts failing classes. While Parker is convinced that the only way to make things right again is to cut herself off from everyone, doing so isn’t as simple as she thinks. An intriguing mystery keeps the story going all the way to the end in Cracked Up To Be.
by Meg Wolitzer
Jam Gallahue, a 15-year-old protagonist in Meg Wolitzer’s young adult novel Belzhar, is the protagonist. Reeve Maxfield, Jam’s British boyfriend, had been the love of her life, so his death leaves her heartbroken. Her parents decided to send her to a boarding school in rural Vermont because she was unable to cope with the loss. The school has a particular expertise in working with troubled adolescents. It’s not long before Jam realizes her school’s journal-writing assignment isn’t quite so routine as she first thought. If you’re looking for a book with a lot of surprises, Belzhar is right up there.
by Kelly Braffet
Kelly Braffet’s 2013 novel, Save Yourself, tells the story from three different points of view. One of these is Patrick Cusimano, whose father’s drunk driving accident resulted in the death of a child, making him and his brother the town’s scapegoats. Adding another layer of complexity is Mike’s girlfriend Caro, who is likewise trying to flee a troubled past. Lastly, we hear from Patrick’s friend’s sibling Verna, who is a third-grader. Intriguing connections are made between the lives of these oddball characters, ensuring that the story remains gripping throughout.
There Will Be Lies
by Nick Lake
Shelby Jane Cooper, a young deaf girl, is the protagonist of Nick Lake’s young adult novel There Will Be Lies. Shelby was home-schooled by her overbearing mother before she was killed in a car accident just a few months shy of turning eighteen. Shelby receives a strange message from a coyote as a result of this encounter, and she is perplexed. As her mother takes her on a trip to the Grand Canyon, she doesn’t have much time to figure out what’s going on. Shelby begins to realize that things aren’t quite what they appear to be as she sets out on her journey to avoid dangers that only her mother is aware of. To keep you on your toes, There Will Be Lies is packed with surprises.
by Lauren Oliver
Lauren Oliver is the author of the New York Times bestselling young adult novel Vanishing Girls. The story revolves around Dara and Nick, two sisters who were once inseparable. Dara’s face was scarred in an accident, and she and her sister became estranged. Dara mysteriously vanishes on Nick’s birthday, leading Nick to believe that her sister is merely joking around. Nick begins to wonder if the two disappearances, one involving a nine-year-old girl named Madeline Snow, are connected. A large portion of the book is devoted to the events leading up to the disappearance, but there are also a number of major plot twists.
by Alice Oseman
Finally, I’d like to recommend a book like We Were Liars that explores the love between true friends, rather than a mystery that stems from a philosophical standpoint.
An academic with a bright future, Frances Janvier, is the protagonist of Radio Silence. She wants to go to Cambridge and land a good job. It’s important to note that Frances’ true love is creating fan art for the YouTube podcast University City; this is her true calling.
Aled Last, who suffers from depression, is behind the podcast’s anonymous operation.. Frances and Aled become close friends as they share a passion for the arts.
Aled feels betrayed by Frances when he discovers that she was the one who revealed his identity as the creator of University City. He ends all communication with her and heads to college. Aled was Frances’ only true friend, and his death has left her heartbroken. Now that Frances’ world is falling apart, she realizes that the future she had hoped for may not be the future she needs..
It’s a must-read if you enjoyed We Were Liars and character-driven stories like Radio Silence.