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The Masked Truth

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  3,325 ratings  ·  550 reviews
Riley Vasquez is haunted by the brutal murder of the couple she was babysitting for.

Max Cross is suffering under the shadow of a life-altering diagnosis he doesn’t dare reveal.

The last thing either of them wants is to spend a weekend away at a therapy camp alongside five other teens with “issues.” But that’s exactly where they are when three masked men burst in to take the
Hardcover, 340 pages
Published October 13th 2015 by Doubleday Canada
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Average rating 3.85  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,325 ratings  ·  550 reviews

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Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘

Actual rating : 1.5 stars - DNF at 50%

► Let's start with several questions, okay?

1) Are you able to repeatedly suspend your disbelief?

✘ It doesn't bother you if the therapy weekend aimed at teenagers is organized in an old office building without windows (because apparently when you're disturbed/suicidal/suffering from random mental illness issues, spending days without natural light is going to help you) and which is not up to fire code. You think that parents would willingly put their childr
Danielle (Love at First Page)
5+ stars!

This was, quite simply, one of the best books I have ever read.

If you like --

*Intense, taut, unexpected, and suspenseful thrillers;
*An understated and powerful examination of mental illnesses;
*Death by adorbs and an OTP-worthy romance;
*Characters you will immediately connect with and root for...

Then this book is for you. I sincerely hope that is everyone, because The Masked Truth deserves all the praise in the world.

I started it on whim after picking it up at BEA, having no expectatio
Emma Giordano
Aug 31, 2016 rated it liked it
3.5 Stars! While I definitely had issues with this read, I really enjoyed parts of it! I would definitely recommend it to others and think it's worth the read.

L I K E S :

General Plot: As basic as it sounds, I just really loved the plot of this book! Kids go away to a therapy retreat and are held hostage by gun-wielding, mask-hidden thugs? Sign me up! (Well, don't actually sign me up for a weekend like that, it was just a really interesting idea for a story.) While I definitely had issues in the
Another great read by Armstrong! Highly enjoyed this book and never found it boring.

I love the exploration of mental illness. This added into the story made a great mystery-thriller that kept me on the edge of my seat.
I am sitting here unable to put into words how I feel about this book. The Masked Truth is heart-stopping. I cannot think of any other way to put it. This book is the perfect blend of mystery, thriller, horror, suspense, and just the right amount of action and romance. Seriously, it has it all with the right amounts of everything. I am not quite sure what I expected from Kelley Armstrong’s first ya non-fantasy book, but this exceeded any expectations. I am now hoping beyond all hope that she w ...more
Alex is The Romance Fox
1,5 stars

I am a big fan of Kelley Armstrong’s The Otherworld Series and after reading some of my GR friends reviews, which were mostly positive, decided to read her latest YA book, The Masked Truth.

By the time I had read a few chapters, I thought…hey this reminds me of something like The Breakfast Club movie!! Remember, a group of “troubled” teenagers are stuck in detention together and for the next hour and half, we get to listen to all their woes and tribulations and they get to know each othe
Briar's Reviews
To begin this review, I have to admit I'm a little biased. I have always enjoyed Kelley Armstrong's books and doubly so because she's Canadian (represent!!). My review will absolutely reflect that I thoroughly enjoy her writing style and I am always down for a reading ride in her books.

So, off to the races...

This book is unique and different. It's not the typical Kelley Armstrong book I have come to expect, but I did enjoy going off the beaten path.

Riley is our lead, and the poor girl just witn
Jody McGrath
Apr 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was a different type of book for Kelley Armstrong, and I absolutely loved it! She writes a terrific thriller, but also delves into the real world of mental illness. What it means to the person who has it and has to struggle with it every day, how it affects those around them and their struggle, and then the public and the lack of knowledge about mental illnesses that makes them ignorant and afraid. Ms. Armstrong really did her homework.

The thriller was great. The ending whodunit was predict
1. I've never read a YA thriller that was as intense as this one
2. Amazing OTP
3. Fascinating story about mental illnesses
Jan 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A thoroughly entertaining and worthwhile departure from the norm for Kelley Armstrong! Gobbled this one up in an afternoon.
Dark, twisted, suspense with complex characters dripping with issues.
I loved her paranormal series and expected something other-ish to fill these pages. Yes, I do pick up books I know nothing about and start reading, it's fun to be surprised. Back to the point, I was reading about these troubled teens who had been brought together for this weekend therapy, in a remote location, with no windows and I expected ghosts, vampires, special powers ? They had no powers, no para-anything and not a touch
nick (the infinite limits of love)

The Masked Truth is one of the best YA thriller/suspense books I've ever read. It was brilliantly crafted and executed to perfection. Kelley Armstrong proves, with this book, that it's possible to write a YA thriller that gives equal attention to its characters and its plot.

Riley Vasquez, one of the two protagonists of this novel, was from the very beginning, a character I liked. In her 17 years, she had endured way too much pain and horror than any person should in their lives, having had her f
It was so hard to give this a 3 star... but it just was not up to Kelley Armstrong's usual badassery for me... I was not grabbed from the get go and it didn't get better. The idea was great, but the execution fell flat for me. Very disappointing. Now I need to go reread an older novel to feel better haha. ...more
Rashika (is tired)
Actual Rating 4.5

***This review has also been posted on The Social Potato

I am a major Kelley Armstrong fangirl so I knew I would love this book but I still ended up being surprised by it. The Masked Truth is so different from Kelley Armstrong's YA novels in that it’s more mature and also happens to be a thriller (her YA books so far have been Urban Fantasy/Fantasy.)

One thing Kelley Armstrong has been good about is incorporating diversity in her novels and she does it again with a Hispanic f
Believe the hype! It's seriously that good!!! I was pretty much on the edge of my seat the whole way through, and I just loved every minute! Recommended to everyone (except middle graders due to the violence). ...more
Joy (joyous reads)
May 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Very few books have surprised me this year. Whether it be a twist I never saw coming or book I didn’t think I would like, this year has been a year of expected experiences. Admittedly, I chose The Masked truth on account of the author. Kelley Armstrong has always been someone I admire. I was surprised to find that this book is not Paranormal or Urban Fantasy, for that matter. So I was very excited to read something out of the ordinary. This book reminded me of The Breakfast Club featuring a grou ...more
Jan 28, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
CONTENT WARNINGS: The Masked Truth deals with mental illness, predominantly PTSD and schizophrenia. Throughout the novel are ableist slurs, racism/cultural stereotyping, size shaming, sexism, and the threat of a sexuality conversion camp. While these problematic things are for the most part called out by other characters, sometimes they go unchecked. ("Crazy" appears frequently.) There's also gun violence.

I understand what the author tried to do here, but the execution is iffy.

The novel comprise
Sep 29, 2015 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fans of YA thrillers

2.5 stars (maybe)

I have a rather complicated relationship with Kelly Armstrong's books. More like "it's not you, it's me" kind. Her books are entertaining with good language and intriguing plot but I am not invested in her characters, there's no connection. I am like a passerby observing them from the side but not feeling anything particular toward them. The same was with The masked truth. I rather liked the story and suspense, but MCs and dialogs did not touch me nor I wanted to sympathi

Alissa Patrick
Aug 31, 2015 rated it liked it
I won this ARC from a Goodreads giveaway awhile back in exchange for a review. Thank you GR!

Riley is suffering from sever survivor's guilt. The parents of the girl she babysits for were gunned down in front of her as they were leaving their house. Riley reacted with quick thinking and hid herself and the little girl under the bed. She saved the girl's life but feels like a coward for hiding under the bed.

She begins to go to therapy to deal with her depression and PTSD, and it is highly encourag
Jun 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
*Full review to come closer to the release date*

I honestly don't know how to write a review right now. I'm still reeling from that wild ride. Wow. I'm quivering, shaking, absolutely dying right now. The Masked Truth deserves every single one of those five stars--it deserves more than just those five stars.

I honestly cannot recommend any novel more than this. If there's a single book that you preorder in 2015, I ask that it be this one. It deserves each and every one of these five stars. Congratu
Nov 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2015
This was definitely out of my usual reading comfort zone, but I'm glad I gave it a try. I've never read anything about a hostage situation before, and so it was pretty jarring at first. There were some seriously heart stopping moments of suspense in it, and twists and turns that'll leave you fumbling. And it's more than just reading about the crime, you have to try and solve it as well. I have to say I'm pretty proud of myself for catching before the big reveal. Overall, a really intense read! ...more
Actual Rating: 4.5

YAAAAAAASSS. That was seriously one of the best mystery/thriller books I’ve ever read. It is so much more than a "crazed gunman loose in a camp of kids” story. So so much more.

I expected one thing when I picked this up, and I got it alright. I got it and I got MORE. The story was intense and filled with suspense. I couldn’t put the book down, I just wanted to know what happened next! And just when I thought there was nowhere left for the story to go, it went somewhere and I was
So I started thinking about how this book wasn't what I expected that was probably my own fault. And then I thought about how I say that a lot and maybe I should stop blaming myself for it and does this indicate a larger personality flaw?

So, hey, the book made me think!

I knew this was thriller/horror, but I wasn't expecting this level of violence. I've read most of Armstrong's work and, sure, they have violence, but it's primarily in a fantasy and/or adult context, so it reads differently to me.
Kathy Davie
Oct 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller
The Masked Truth is a heart-stopping psychological thriller.

Don't expect this to be anything like a typical Armstrong story, for it's not. It is, however, extremely(!!!) well done, and I wish I could give it a "10".

My Take
Part of me was desperately turning pages as fast as I could, and another part of me wanted to put the book down, to catch my breath, to find a moment. Ah, god, Max, oh god, Max is such a sweetheart. All that promise and now all the struggling he must endure.

And what an excellen
Laurie • The Baking Bookworm
My Review: The Masked Truth is an interesting action-filled read suspenseful murder mystery for teens that also focuses on various mental health issues. I've been a huge fan of Kelley Armstrong's 'Women of the Underworld' series but some of her other series (her Nadia Stafford series) haven't resonated with me as much. This book falls somewhere in the middle of those two poles.

This book starts out strong and I was invested from the beginning of the book because I wanted to learn about Riley's pa
As seen on The Quiet Concert

This book was bloody brilliant. WOW. I could not read fast enough nor put it down. And my mind is still reeling from what happened. It was amazing and I loved it and everyone needs to read it.

Armstrong doesn't waste any time before kicking this story into high gear. The masked men show up on page 21 and it's all suspense, anxiety, uncertainty, anticipation, and other thriller-y goodness from then on out. Shit hits the fan around page 56 and that's when Riley and Max t
Nov 02, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult, library
I liked the themes of this, but the crime plot was unbelievable to the point of being frustrating.

A group of teens with various mental or behavioral challenges go on a weekend therapy retreat. Rather than participating in some kind of formal, recognized program, they're just going to hang out with two young therapists in a windowless converted warehouse that someone stuck beds in just for this event. Everybody's parents seem okay with this arrangement.

Shit goes down immediately, before we get to
Oct 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’m a big Kelley Armstrong fan, and am always eager to read more of her work. The Masked Truth is one I’ve been curious about for a long time, since it was released a few years ago, but it’s only when I noticed the library had a copy that I decided to dive in.

If I’m being completely honest, The Masked Truth is not a favourite. In fact, it’s a rounded up three-point-five-star rating. It required a bit too much suspension of belief for me to love this one, but I did enjoy the way mental health was
Nov 10, 2015 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Hunger Games lovers
3.5 stars
What a thriller! Action packed and intense. Though not the most believable of stories, The Masked Truth had lots of plot twists and likable characters. What got me, however, was the writing. Tight, varied, beautiful. Got a little long at the end, but still enjoyable (and by enjoyable I mean disturbingly full of murder and mayhem and motives. But, y'know...)

Side note, I'm glad I didn't "realize" who this author was before I picked up the book. I probably would't have given it a chance. G
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
Jun 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: dtb-book
Being a huge fan of Armstrong and also on a thriller/mystery kick lately, there was no way when I caught a glimpse of The Masked Truth on her website that I was going to be able to resist it.

Told between dual point of views, The Masked Truth was so much fun. A story that was every bit as gruesome and frightening as it was interesting and entertaining.
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Madison Mega-Mara...: #229 The Masked Truth by Kelley Armstrong 1 1 Dec 13, 2015 07:49PM  

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Kelley Armstrong has been telling stories since before she could write. Her earliest written efforts were disastrous. If asked for a story about girls and dolls, hers would invariably feature undead girls and evil dolls, much to her teachers' dismay. All efforts to make her produce "normal" stories failed.

Today, she continues to spin tales of ghosts and demons and werewolves, while safely locked a

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“Why does everyone call you Mexican?” he asks. My head jerks up. “Huh?” “I’m distracting you with an unrelated and potentially rude question. Aaron called you Mexican. So did they. But you don’t have an accent, and I knew a guy at school named Vasquez who was from Spain. So as the foreigner who hasn’t quite figured out your country, what tells them you’re Mexican?” I want to brush off the question. Really not the time. But that’s the point, isn’t it? I look down at my quavering hands, and when I squeeze my eyes shut, all I see is Predator, pulling the trigger. I can hear Gray’s and Predator’s footsteps. They’re far enough away and we’re well enough hidden that we’re safe here. For now. I glance at Max. “I don’t have an accent because my family has been here for three generations. My father’s family comes from Spain. My mother’s is from Cuba. That makes me Hispanic, and the presumption here—far enough from the border that there aren’t a lot of Latino immigrants—is that Hispanic equals Mexican.” “So Hispanic and Latino mean the same thing?” I shake my head. “Hispanic means you are descended from a country that speaks Spanish. Latino means you’re descended from a country in Latin America. Some are both, like Cuba. But if you come from Brazil, you’re Latino and not Hispanic, because the official language is Portuguese.” “And if it’s Spain, it’s Hispanic and not Latino. Excellent. My lesson in American terminology for the day.” 1 likes
“As the abyss widens, though, I begin to fear that coming back to the surface may, someday, not be under my control. Because at the bottom of my abyss is not death, it's madness.” 0 likes
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