Monday, August 5, 2013

Teen Review: Twins and Mystery

What if one day you woke up in a bathtub in Las Vegas to the sight of your twin looking at herself in the mirror, while you were nowhere to be found in the reflection because you were actually dead? Too much? Let me try again: What if one day you woke up only to realize you never would again? Well, that’s what happened to Sutton Mercer in Sara Shepard’s The Lying Game.

This 307-page mystery begins when Sutton Mercer wakes up in an unfamiliar place and sees a girl walk into the bathroom. Sutton repeatedly tries to get her attention, but goes unnoticed. Finally the girl looks up at herself in the mirror and Sutton sees that the girl looks exactly like her. And I mean exactly. Then Sutton realizes what’s going on: She’s dead. Sutton doesn’t remember much of what happened when she was alive, and all she really knows now is that she is unwillingly attached to this girl who looks like her. Sutton goes wherever the girl goes and thinks whatever the girl thinks. Eventually, Sutton discovers that this girl's name is Emma Paxton and Emma is Sutton's long-lost twin sister. Emma knows that she has a twin sister because she thinks that Sutton has reached out to her and asked her to come out to Phoenix to meet her. Emma goes, only to find that her sister is dead, and then she has to take on the role of Sutton Mercer while attempting to solve Suttons murder!

I thoroughly enjoyed this book because it adds a new twist on the “what if you had a long-lost twin” idea. I mean, personally, if I found out that I had a twin who disappeared and I had to take her place, I would freak out. I would have to pretty much become a new person by learning her habits, behaviors, attitude, and so much more, just to avoid having someone raise an eyebrow.

I also enjoyed how, in a way, the reader was Sutton. The reader and Sutton both have no power, influence, or control over what the protagonist is going to do next, they just have to sit back and see how everything turns out. They had control over their own thoughts and assumptions, of course, but they couldn't share any of that with Emma.

I’m in 9th grade and I think this book's reading level is 7th-12th because of the language, discussion of the foster system, and murder. I would recommend this to anyone who typically likes murder mysteries, along with a bit of drama and romance. I would give this book a 4.5/5 because I believe that the story had great writing and a great plot.

Reviewed by Anonymous, 9th grade

Editor's note: We also have several sequels to this book.

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