The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager (5 out of 5)

Wow. I talk about sophomore jinx with books all the time (or as I know it, Paula Hawkins Syndrome). Thankfully, NOT the case with Riley Sager. I had an advance copy of “Final Girls”, his first book, that someone sent me a copy of back in late 2016. I didn’t get around to reading it until 2017, months before my gallbladder operation and when I was sicker than crap and needed something really different to take my mind off of it. Done! “Final Girls” accomplished that. This time around, the health is restored but I am swamped and buried in books, between my job, my blog, and the one I am writing. I wanted to wait to read it until right before it was released, because I wanted the experience of reading it to be fresh for when I begin recommending it to customers. I tore through it in a few days, and I loved it. It is currently out and available for purchase at your local bookstore.

Camp Nightingale…and one incident there…decades ago…has haunted rising artist Emma. It’s also the driving force behind the paintings that are winning her acclaim. At her debut opening, the former owner of the camp surprises her by being in attendance and buying a painting. She also proposes a meeting, which Emma stalls on, but ultimately ends up going to. Frannie, the owner and well-known socialite, tells Emma it’s been too long that the camp has been closed, and not only is she reopening it, but she wants Emma to come and stay, and teach painting classes to the young kids who come. Emma has every reason to tell this woman to buzz off. Emma was at the camp when her three best girl friends went missing, never to be found. After a fruitless search, the girls are presumed dead and the camp is shuttered- supposedly forever. But nothing, kids, is forever. Emma goes on with her life, going to therapy and reliving what happened and what she could have gone differently, but NEVER forgetting. Despite rampant misgivings, Emma decides to go back to the camp. Of course, our girl has secrets herself, and so, it seems, does everyone at Camp Nightingale. A lot of the same people who were at the camp years ago when the tragedy happened are back, and things start happening again. She’s accused of all sorts of things, and does herself no favors when requesting the same cabin she had back when everything happened. She is-again- bunking with three girls who become friendly with her. Emma’s agenda includes finding out what happened to her friends all those years ago. Weird shit has been going on, but even Emma can’t believe it when the new girls disappear into the woods one night. She blames herself…as do the cops, most of the camp staff, etc. Emma does the unthinkable and goes off on her own to try to solve the mysteries of what happened to both sets of girls. My jaw dropped open at the end. Wow. Just wow. Definitely spooky and not at all contrived. If you want to give yourself a fright while not stretching the boundaries of believability, this is a great place to begin. “The Last Time I Lied” is out now, brought to us by Dutton, a subsidiary of Penguin Random House.

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~ by generationgbooks on July 10, 2018.

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