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The Secrets of Lily Graves

3.74  ·  Rating details ·  2,040 ratings  ·  263 reviews
With the intrigue of Pretty Little Liars and plenty of romance, bestselling author Sarah Strohmeyer weaves a story of secrets and lies—set in a funeral parlor.

Growing up in a house of female morticians, Lily Graves knows all about buried secrets. She knows that perfect senior-class president Erin Donohue isn’t what she seems. She knows why Erin’s ex-boyfriend, hot football
Paperback, 304 pages
Published May 13th 2014 by Balzer + Bray
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Josie No, there is nothing paranormal about this book. It's more of a mystery novel.…moreNo, there is nothing paranormal about this book. It's more of a mystery novel.(less)

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Average rating 3.74  · 
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 ·  2,040 ratings  ·  263 reviews

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Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies
“You know what I think?” I said. “I think whoever killed Erin knew about you and me and her.” I carefully sidestepped the term love triangle, since I didn’t want to go there.
Girl, you went there.

This wasn't a terrible book, but it was completely generic, lackluster, and half-assed in every way. There's kind of a love triangle, and there's kind of cheating, but not really, because the two main characters kind of made swoony eyes at each other and literally nothing else for 99% of the book. Th
Sarah Strohmeyer
Sep 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Not only did I read it. I wrote it!
Mar 31, 2014 rated it liked it
Lily Graves lives amongst a family of morticians and plans on becoming one as well. Add in her dark, gothic sort of wardrobe and it’s no surprise that she’s regarded as a freak in school. This doesn’t bother her at all.

Life gets complicated for Lily when Matt, a jock and part of the popular crowd, asks her to tutor him in History. They form a friendship and more through their tutoring sessions, but Matt has a girlfriend, Erin. Erin is part of the popular crowd as well, and she’s far from nice t
Faye, la Patata
If you're going to pick up The Secrets of Lily Graves because you're looking for a kick-ass mystery-thriller read, it may be best to pack your bags and look elsewhere because this book is anything but brilliant. While it did not totally "suck" per se, there was nothing about it that really shone, either. All in all, it was an average read - with a bland and stupid heroine who kept emphasizing she was different, with a plotline that never felt had any proper build-up, and a romance that just neve ...more
See more reviews at YA Midnight Reads

After adoring How Zoe Made Her Dreams (Mostly) Come True, I was expecting another entertaining and cute novel with the addition of intrigue and suspense. Unfortunately, The Secrets of Lily Graves did not turn out as good as I has hoped.

Erin is dead. And everyone thinks it's Lily and Matt's fault. First it was said to be a suicide, after Erin believed that Matt was going behind her back to be with Lily. But they were wrong, it was murder. Here is your generic,
Jan 07, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: ebook, arc
The characters are fun and I especially enjoyed the MC's voice - she has a very intelligent way of speaking and I liked that she's honest and real with who she is. I also enjoyed the funeral home business aspect which was really interesting. The romance is meg, we've got the hot jock who falls for the odd girl storyline. Though mostly I found the love interest boring.

The plot itself wasn't overly impressive. It was fun while it lasted but it doesn't have any memorable qualities - especially for
Jan 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
I usually find young adult thrilling novels lacking but this one had personality and tension on every page.

Lily Graves is destined to be a mortician, being a member of a family who has prepared the dead for funeral for decades. Lily is a odd character, she dresses in dark gothic clothes and feels most comfortable with the dead. She spends her summer tutoring Matt Houser for a history exam and they become close, much to her best friend Sara's and Matt's girlfriends disappointment. Erin confronts
Nov 07, 2017 rated it it was ok
"Never a dull moment," I said as we bounced out of the field and onto County Road. "Not with Lily Graves."

For a light, silly mystery, this might be a good one to read. But I read too much mystery for this one to have been good.

Lily Graves is the daughter of a mortician mother. So she's embraced death and wears all black, pentagram jewelry and is appropriately angsty. She's bullied at school by the "normals." Those kids who are having a perfectly "normal" high school experience - perfect grades,
Rashika (is tired)
***This review has also been posted on Tangled in Pages

The Secrets of Lily Graves can easily be summed up as addicting. Can I pack my bags and go now? Drat. I have to say more? But I don’t know what to sayyyyy because really, while The Secrets of Lily Graves was fun, it wasn’t anything special. It was a quick read and I finished it in around 2 hours and the ending confused me a little but other than that, I never really thought about it as soon as I put it down.

The author makes use of common tro
nick (the infinite limits of love)

The Secrets of Lily Graves was, as expected, a wildly entertaining read with quirky characters. The murder mystery wasn't all that unpredictable, but Lily makes the book worth a read!

Lily Graves is a girl who is going to capture your heart with her strange ways from the first page. She's undoubtedly an odd-ball because she works with her very female-centric family as a mortician. While everyone at school finds her freaky, Lily herself enjoys her work. I don't know about you guys, but I have a th
Oct 16, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Now this book was definitely not what I was expecting it to be, I really don’t know what I was expecting, but what I got was a solid, funny mystery story which left me wanting more. I’m a real difficult person to please when it comes to reading books which deal with a mystery plot line, mostly because it will take ages to convince me to give one a go and secondly I hate guessing who is behind everything early on. With The Secrets of Lily Graves this was not the case, as I was quick to make a few ...more
Provided by the publisher via Edelweiss

I loved Smart Girls Get What They Want by Sarah Strohmeyer, and since this one was written by the same author, I was really excited. She didn't disappoint as The Secrets of Lily Graves was such an intriguing book.

First off, I have to say the title didn't seem to fit the book. The book was amazing all right, but I'm not sure if I missed anything or there wasn't anything about Lily's secrets. Well, she was observant and knew a lot about people around her, bu
Sarah Elizabeth
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.)
17-year-old Lily Graves is the daughter of a mortician, and lives above her mother’s funeral home. Unfortunately this gives the other kids at her school plenty of ammunition to use against her, although Erin has another complaint – she thinks her boyfriend Matt broke up with her to be with Lily.
When Erin is then discovered dead, and it looks like a homicide, Matt and Lily ar
What a mystery! Every time I thought I had figured it out, every time I was sure I knew who the killer was, new information would come to light and I'd realize I had it all wrong! I suspected everyone the entire time! Every single person. Poor Lily, if she had been anything like me, she would have been a basket case by the end. I had no idea who she could trust. I didn't figure she should trust anyone. Every time she trusted someone my mind screamed, "It's a mistake!" But Lily knew w
Jenni Arndt
May 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
After having a long stint of bad luck when it came to murder mysteries The Secrets of Lily Graves came at me like a breath of fresh air. It’s engrossing, it’s twisty and it managed to take me completely by surprise.

Lily Graves hasn’t had the most traditional of upbringings. She’s been raised in a small home attached to her families business which just happens to be a funeral home. She’s grown up fascinated with the dead and has even worked on embalming bodies at a very young age. I loved how qu
Oct 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Where do I start? The Secrets of Lily Graves is one of my favorite 2014 reads so far. It was so unique and addicting. I actually started it at one early morning thinking I would read a chapter or two then get back to studying, but I ended up finishing the book by the afternoon. What does that mean? it means you need to go buy this book ASAP. It combines so many elements I enjoy in a book, murder mystery, a smart and likable protagonist, a cute potential romance, memorable plot, and lastly, the m ...more
Feb 23, 2016 rated it it was ok
The beginning of the story started of strong,but went downhill after that. The writing style surprised me, cause it was so elementary, it did not have a strong pull like other romantic books. I guess you can say that I expected it to be more engrossing due to the luring synopsis. Also the characters were very undeveloped, thus I did not really care about their contribution. Let's start with the main character, why was she needed? Okay that sounds harsh but really she was filler for the most part ...more
Oct 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oct 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So this book shouldn't be called 'The Secrets of Lily Graves'. It should be called 'The Secrets of Everyone that Lily Graves Knows'. Jesus, what a wild ride this book was.

This book follows Lily Graves, a 17-year old girl who comes from a family of morticians. Lily has been tutoring star athlete and total hottie Matt Houser to help him pass History (if he fails, no more football). Unfortunately for Lily, Matt has a girlfriend, Erin, who just so happens to be Little Miss Perfect herself. Now, this
The Secrets of Lily Graves is a thrilling book, if not boring at some points. It was highly entertaining in its sense of ‘mystery’ and questionable set of characters. It’s not exactly an original novel, seeing as to how it was quite predictable even for me (who is not much a fan of thrillers), I still had a good time nevertheless. The plot twists and the intricate patterns of the suspect’s whereabouts were something that kept me enthralled. I did see the Pretty Little Liars essence to it althoug ...more
Michelle (Pink Polka Dot Books)
Meh. Wasn't super impressed with the writing or the storyline. Matt had a case of the "too good to be trues" and Lily annoyed me. I figured out part of the ending really early on-- and the red herring stuff that was thrown in was just too dramatic to be for real. So yeah, MEH is my rating for this book. ...more
Patty (IheartYA311)
Mar 14, 2019 rated it it was ok
This book was very simple. I expected it to be more in depth but it was a quick read. It would have been 3 stars but the MCs hasty conclusion bugged me. Kind of disappointed.
2.5 stars

I absolutely LOVED Sarah Strohmeyer's Smart Girls Get What They Want and I liked How Zoe Made Her Dreams (Mostly) Come True, so when The Secrets of Lily Graves appeared, I just KNEW I had to read it - regardless of the fact that this was not a fluffy romance but a mystery. Sadly, Strohmeyer's foray into a new genre didn't work too well for me.

Lily Graves is a murder mystery. Lily's classmate Erin is found dead. First it is assumed to be a suicide, but quickly it becomes clear that there
Lisa (lifeinlit)
Jan 13, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-arc
What first attracted me to this story was the cover. There was just something about it that made me want to find out more. Also the idea of it being a mystery. When I was younger, I read A LOT of mystery books, which actually began my love of reading. Nowadays I read far fewer. So when one catches my eye and I end up really enjoying it, it brings back those wonderful memories and reminds me why I used to read so many mysteries.

Lily Graves has one of the hardest family businesses for peers to acc
May 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
Lily Graves is a mortician's daughter, and she lives up to potential stereotypes with her love of fancy black dresses. She's also tutoring a local football star, Matt, for instance. Then, when she's cleaning up in the cemetery (her mom makes her volunteer), Matt's girlfriend Erin swings by and attacks Lily for breaking them up. By the end of the day, Erin is dead. It's up to Lily to prove that she and Matt had nothing to do with it.

THE SECRETS OF LILY GRAVES is Sarah Stohmeyer's first foray into
Feb 16, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014-releases
3.5 stars on this one. What is with authors sucking at endings? The way the ending was written was just so clinical and distant compared to the rest of the book. And I really loved the conversational, snappy tone of this whole novel until like the last twenty pages. Disappointing. Again.
I just literally suck so much at guessing the killer when it comes to mystery books.

I'm not really into these kind of books, the "someone's been murdered and let's go find the killer 'cause that's totally not dangerous" sort. But lately, I've been reading A LOT of these kind. I worry for my sanity. It's gets a bit predictable, it all follows the same formula. Girl has been found murdered, everyone suspects this guy, the mc tries to find the killer, everything seems to be solved until a big plot
May 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
The Secrets of Lily Graves was a good read!

I liked Lily.
She didn't give up on finding Erin's killer, even though they parted on bad terms.... and she didn't stop wearing what she wanted to wear, just because people thought it was weird, and inappropriate.
I felt quite sorry for her when she was getting all the blame!

The ending really surprised me! I didn't expect that at all!

Overall, a good murder mystery.
You can find this on my blog, too:

My expectations weren't great about The Secrets of Lily Graves, I read good and bad reviews about it and I knew that the Goodreads rating isn't very bright but I was still curious about it. This book was one of the greatest disappointments of the year. I had to suffer through this book because there weren't any exciting parts.

Keep reading but there's one teeny-tiny spoiler in the characters section, under Matt's name.

This book was really cheeseball but I enjoyed it a LOT. Sometimes you just need to turn your brain off and get sucked into a story.
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Sarah Strohmeyer is the award-winning, nationally bestselling author of 18 novels for young adults and adults, including the Bubbles Yablonsky mystery series, SMART GIRLS GET WHAT THEY WANT and THE CINDERELLA PACT, which became the Lifetime Movie, LYING TO BE PERFECT.
Her first mystery, BUBBLES UNBOUND, won the Agatha Award and Romantic TImes Award for Best First Mystery. THE SLEEPING BEAUTY PROPOS

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