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Ella Black seems to live the life most other seventeen-year-olds would kill for . . .

Until one day, telling her nothing, her parents whisk her off to Rio de Janeiro. Determined to find out why, Ella takes her chance and searches through their things.

And realises her life has been a lie.

Her mother and father aren't hers at all. Unable to comprehend the truth, Ella runs away, to the one place they'll never think to look - the favelas.

But there she learns a terrible secret - the truth about her real parents and their past. And the truth about a mother, desperate for a daughter taken from her seventeen years ago . . .

344 pages, Paperback

First published January 11, 2018

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About the author

Emily Barr

35 books541 followers
Emily Barr worked as a journalist in London, but always hankered after a quiet room and a book to write. She went travelling for a year, writing a column in the Guardian about it as she went, and it was there that she had an idea for a novel set in the world of backpackers in Asia. This became Backpack, which won the WH Smith New Talent Award. She has since written eleven more adult novels published in the UK and around the world, and a novella, Blackout, for the Quick Reads series. Her twelfth novel, The Sleeper, is a psychological thriller set on the London to Cornwall sleeper train.
In 2013 she went to Svalbard with the idea of setting a thriller in the Arctic. The book that came out of it was The One Memory of Flora Banks, a thriller for young adults, which attracted universal interest from publishers before being bought pre-emptively by Penguin earlier this year. It will be published globally in January 2017.
She lives in Cornwall with her partner and their children.

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5 stars
240 (12%)
4 stars
410 (22%)
3 stars
616 (33%)
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365 (19%)
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219 (11%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 383 reviews
Profile Image for Bex (Beckie Bookworm).
1,960 reviews1,251 followers
May 31, 2020
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The Truth and Lies of Ella Black by Emily Barr was a book I had been anticipating for a while
I was so very excited to get started with this one as the blurb sounded fantastic.
Unfortunately, this was not quite what I was expecting.
I'd go as far as to say this fell massively short of the mark in terms of what I expected this to deliver, I am so disappointed.
It was like a tale of two halves, the first being super exciting.
Do you remember that old 1956 film The Bad Seed, super movie.
Well, this is where I was at rubbing my hands together in glee especially when we got the big reveal I could just picture where this was taking us.
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Then nothing, this book just sank like a damp squad and It was all highly unlikely scenarios and teenage drama and angst.
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I kept reading expecting something to happen only to end up deflated.
And to top it all off Ella herself was just not that likeable of a character.
Now if we had got evil Ella instead of just bratty angsty Ella I could have totally digged her.
But no The Truth and Lies of Ella Black is just Ella being a major cow to her parents, I mean total obnoxious I hate everyone teen, so over this.
This is well written and I did finish so this has those plus points in its favour but overall for me this was just an OK read.
So, in conclusion, this just wasn't quite what I was expecting at all, the book really didn't match its killer synopsis, a real shame indeed.
Thank You to NetGalley for proving me with an ARC of The Truth and Lies of Ella Black by Emily Barr of which I have reviewed voluntary.
All opinions expressed are entirely my own.

Reviewed By Beckie Bookworm
Profile Image for Bee.
430 reviews854 followers
August 28, 2017
Maddie and I were listening to this in the car, and got around 50% through before giving up. Ella was an absolute brat, the narrative was repetitive for no reason, and when she started disrespecting her parents I was like NO.
Profile Image for Emmy van Ruijven.
Author 9 books191 followers
March 30, 2018
One of the worst books I've read in a LONG time. It made me sick. Why did I finish this at all? Review coming up on my blog.
Profile Image for Liz Barnsley.
3,430 reviews994 followers
November 24, 2017
Probably more like 2.5 stars. Hit and miss.

I was a huge fan of The One Memory of Flora Banks so I was quite excited to read this. Flora touched my heart and is the kind of character that stays with you. Unfortunately this time not so much with our main protagonist who frankly was a little bit entitled and a lot whiny.

Anyway though - there were good things and bad things.

The Good: The portions of the story where she's alone in Brazil, the life there - it came alive on the page and made you feel that you could actually go anywhere and do anything and life didn't have to be a static, mundane thing. That portion too dealt with the pure good hearts of some of our fellow human beings and had the theme running through that outward appearances don't necessarily reflect personality or intent. This was a lot of the central part of it and I banged through these bits wanting to live like Ella was living...

The Bad: Ella is supposedly 17 but reads more like a 12/13 year old, for no real reason. She didn't have an issue that would make her read this way, in fact to all intents and purposes she had a normal upbringing mostly and was an intelligent girl. Her reaction to the central secret read more like a toddler throwing a tantrum than a clever girl who has had her whole life fall apart. Supposedly explained away by her alter ego "Bella" (and please for the love of GOD stop explaining that Bella = Bad Ella we got it already around page 4) it didn't really ring true. Although it did mean she ran off and had an adventure, which was the bit I liked. And please with the "I'm in love with you even though I met you yesterday" - seriously young adults don't really do that as far as I know but it seems to be a thing in Young Adult novels.

So yes hit and miss. It didn't have the depth and sense of feeling that Flora Banks had - which doesn't mean it isn't a fairly good read if you can get past the annoyances and is worth it for the bits in Rio.

I'll continue reading Emily Barr but Ella Black can be resigned to the "not really going to remember this tomorrow" pile.
Profile Image for Nora (NoraLeest).
238 reviews191 followers
November 8, 2019
Due to exams this took me way longer to finish than anticipated.... Short review: don’t read this book.

Spoilers up ahead, obviously !

Basically this book is: Ella has a bad side she cant control > her parents suddenly take her to Rio > she sees a boy and randomly falls head over heals in love w/him > finds out she’s adopted > her bad side attacks people and she runs away > desperate times > works at a school > her biological mother is nuts and dies > Ella is OK

Literally the worst and most stereotype-confirming book I’ve ever read. I feel slightly offended that the author used a severe mental illness as entertainment, instead of using their platform to educate.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Zainab.
381 reviews501 followers
December 23, 2017
There were some parts that felt a bit too unreal but other than that,I quite liked the story.
Profile Image for mahriya➹.
123 reviews195 followers
June 1, 2020
thinking about how if this trash could be published...then maybe my WIP has the chance to be as well
Profile Image for Louise Wilson.
2,753 reviews1,616 followers
January 6, 2018
Ella Black seems to live the life other 17 year olds would kill for. Until one day, her parents whisk her off to Rio De Janerio. Determined to find out why, Ella searches through her parents things and realises her life has been a lie. They are not her parents. So Ella runs away with to the favelas. But she learns a terrible secret, the truth about her real parents and their past.

I really thought this was going to be a good read after reading the burb but unfortunately it wasn't. I did not like the animal abuse at the begining.. There was just no need for so much detail.. Ella is quite an annoying character. I know teenagers can be messed up but Ella was just too messed up for me. The writing was a bit bland. Sadly, this book was not my cup of tea.

I would like to thank NetGalley, Penguin Random House UK, Children's and the author Emily Barr for my ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Hannah.
483 reviews34 followers
Shelved as 'did-not-finish'
November 12, 2017
I put this down on page 12 when mental illness was used to justify horrific animal abuse. It's a no from me.

As I've only actually read 11 pages, I don't feel it would be appropriate to give a star rating on here (it's clearly a 1 in my head) but I can't imagine it gets any better.

I'm also going to get rid of my copy of The One Memory of Flora Banks and avoid everything else by this author because what I read last night was totally unacceptable.
Profile Image for Tracey.
642 reviews469 followers
December 12, 2018
The Truth and Lies of Ella Black just wasn't for me unfortunately. I had so much trouble connecting with Ella and really had no understanding of the things she did and the way she behaved. She just came across as so bratty. Above everything I hated the way that she treated her parents. Such a lack of respect. Oh well, we can't love them all!
Profile Image for Stacey.
58 reviews12 followers
November 13, 2017
Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

"Ella Black seems to live the life most other seventeen-year-olds would kill for . . .

Until one day, telling her nothing, her parents whisk her off to Rio de Janeiro. Determined to find out why, Ella takes her chance and searches through their things.

And realises her life has been a lie.

Her mother and father aren't hers at all. Unable to comprehend the truth, Ella runs away, to the one place they'll never think to look - the favelas.

But there she learns a terrible secret - the truth about her real parents and their past. And the truth about a mother, desperate for a daughter taken from her seventeen years ago."

If this hadn't been an arc then I would have DNF'd and I am not someone to give up lightly.

I requested this once I saw that it was the newest novel by Emily Barr. I read One Memory of Flora Banks earlier this year and although it had it's faults, I did enjoy it. The same cannot be said for this one. While written in a similar writing style to Flora Banks, I could not connect in the same way. It felt juvenial and the repetative nature of this one just got annoying.

I decided to give it the benefit of the doubt and carry on as I was intrigued by the opening line: "40 days until she dies". This book had one of the most predictable storylines, I knew what was coming at every turn. I spent the whole time waiting for this big moment that literally had a count down, and it was the biggest anticlimax I have ever seen.

If this wasn't bad enough there was this ridiculous insta-love that just made me angry. Insta-love is something that really riles me up anyway, but this is one of the worst cases I've ever seen. "I love you. I fell in love with you completely. I love you with all my heart. I know I've only known you a few days but...". I was so close to banging my head against the wall.

I feel this might be something that a much younger audience might enjoy, but for me it was a non-starter and I don't think I will be picking up anything else from this author.
Profile Image for Mridula Gupta.
668 reviews172 followers
March 27, 2018
Another misleading book, the cover is beautiful, the blurb is intriguing and the plot is, well, unexpected in a terrible terrible way.

Ella Black- a 17-year-old kid with a secret, which is nothing but her dark side- Bella. While Ella is a fun loving person and loves painting and hanging out with her friends, Bella draws happiness from killing and destruction. As the days pass Bella seems more in control of Ella than her positive side. Ella is struggling to make peace with her alter ego. But one fine day her parents pick her up from school and tell her that they are going on a vacation to Rio. Ella craves for an explanation, but Rio is the first point in her ‘Things to achieve’ list and Ella is genuinely happy.

But as she suspected, the vacation turns out to be more of a run-away rather than a planned vacation. Ella’s happy bubble is burst violently when she discovers a secret so terrible, she can’t bear to face herself. As her past catches up with her, Ella tries hard to stay calm and survive, even when Bella wants to take over and destroy the world.

The writing style is extremely dramatic and is overdone on epic proportions. The plot is meant to surprise us, and it does, but not in a good way. The climax was shabby and confusing. It was totally out of place and Ella ends up being the most annoying character in the history of annoying characters.

An utter disappointment, the plot could’ve been a bit more normal and realistic.
Profile Image for Sabrina.
1,277 reviews27 followers
September 21, 2017
40 days until she dies. The start of the book sounds clear enough, but as you continue to see these mysterious numbers counting down you realise it's not as simple as you expect. Ella Black leads a privileged life with parents who will do anything for her. But they don't know she is hiding a secret and is not really the simple, nice girl she tries so hard to seem. When they pull her out of school for an unexpected trip to Rio, she finds out that everyone has secrets of their own and nothing about her life is as she thought. Everything Ella goes through made me feel extremely grateful for all the simple things in life. My only slight criticism is that the explanation of Ella's secret at the end isn't very satisfying, I feel like it needed a bit more information and was almost brushed aside with a quick comment.
Profile Image for Sarah.
133 reviews5 followers
February 27, 2018
Top things I don't like in books = insta-love (and I mean LOVE not crush/romance) & bad mental health rep. At times it felt like it was picking up but then something else ridiculous happened and I was like?? No??
There were some interesting parts and if there were only 2 of the about 15 different storylines think it would have been better? It felt all over the place tbh and it's a shame bc mystery and adventures in Rio has so much potential! But the terrible possible schizophrenia rep (if that's even what it was) knocks it down a lot for me because it's super offensive and adds to negative stigma so :/ Even if it was unintentional like how it is kind of written etc should have been called out by someone earlier if I'm honest.
Profile Image for Chloe Reads Books.
795 reviews317 followers
October 24, 2020
I was going to give this 2 stars, but screw it, let’s go for 1. I didn’t enjoy this book. I couldn’t quite pinpoint why I thought the plot was silly, but after reading another person’s review I can agree with them - this whole thing was a teenager throwing a mega-tantrum over a personal discovery. The beginning of the book was so weird, and I was intrigued, but it was completely misleading. Also, the goodreads summary pretty much spoiled half the book!
Profile Image for Catherine  Pinkett.
549 reviews41 followers
January 14, 2019
Chosen ready for Buzzwordathon. Lies/liar/lie
Sorry but I couldn't continue this book. Was expecting good rep of mental illness and multiple personality disorders which not addressed. Not good rep of issues of self harm teenage aggression either. Not suitable for YA audience in my opinion
Animal cruelty early on very graphic and not nice
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Nav (she/her) 🌧.
150 reviews19 followers
January 17, 2020
TW - self harm attempt, animal abuse, animal murder

So, I just finished reading a fantasy book and usually as a mood reader I know what genre book I'm next in the mood to read. But for once I didn't. So, I went to my Goodreads 'want to read' shelf, organised the books by 'average rating' and just decided to pick one of the lower rated books to see if I agreed with the majority or had an unpopular opinion. The book I chose was The Truth and Lies of Ella Black and on first glance the synopsis sounded interesting and like something I'd enjoy reading.

One day Ella's parents arrive at her school and take her from her seemingly normal life in England for a break in Brazil. As Ella is searching through her parents things trying to find answers, she's comes across documents that will change her life forever.

- The London scenes were easy to imagine as I have been there before and reading those pages immediately made me want to go back.
- The actions of the girls in sixth form/college is portrayed quite well as a lot of the time teens don't know what they want yet and will just copy their friends.
- I do understand why Ella behaves the way she does in Rio because if you had been kept so sheltered your whole life, wouldn't you want to make the most of any freedom you managed to get?!
- I love reading and learning all about Rio de Janeiro. I've never particularly been interested in visiting Rio but I could really feel that changing when I was reading this book. It was so easy to imagine all the different places, colour and busyness of it all.
- Ella isn't a perfect character and she makes a lot of mistakes but she's flawed and who isn't in the real world?! She just does what she needs to do to get through each day.
- Even though the synopsis gives away too much in my opinion, I still couldn't put this book down and flew through it! The plot has a real sense of mystery and you never quite know what's going to happen next to Ella and I love that.
- In the acknowledgments it says the author actually visited Brazil to research English teaching schools and I think that is pretty cool.
- I really like the way the book ends. All the important questions are answered and everything is wrapped up nicely.

- Completely out of the blue and with no prior warning the main character started talking about self harm and what she had done. This left me feeling shocked and a little uneasy as I did not see that coming at all. I really feel the author should have put a trigger warning for self harm talk at the beginning of the book.
- Although, the plot is interesting and full of suspense, I do ultimately feel like this book is pretty forgettable and has not made a lasting impact on me.

Final thoughts
I chose to read this book because I was intrigued by the low ratings and reviews. Although, I can see why others may not enjoy it, I for one did and am glad that I chose to read it and make up my own mind about it. Also, be mindful of the trigger/content warnings if you decide to read this.
Profile Image for Papi.
81 reviews1 follower
April 2, 2020
„Истината, която може да провали човешки живот, винаги се крие в най-дребните неща.“

Главната героиня Ела е разделила доброто и злото в нея на две отделни личности. Лошата я е кръстила Бела. Това, че тя не може да приеме и лошите си страни допълнително й усложнява живота. В моите очи авторката представи Ела като някоя побъркана с раздвоение на личността. По някое време имах чувството, че и аз се побърквам. Както и в предната книга и тук едвам завърших историята. Имаше твърде много повтаряемост. Героите не бяха напълно изградени. Даже книгата сякаш имаше раздвоение на личността. Първата половина наистина много бавно ми вървеше там уж ни представяха Ела и семейството й. Втората половина ми вървеше малко по бързо. В нея авторката се беше опитала да пресъздаде реалистична любовна връзка, но явно прекалено беше бързали й не и се беше получило. Всичко беше толкова повърхностно и клиширано.
Краят ме обърка и не разбрах повечето постъпки на героинята.
Самата идея за такава история звучи страхотно, но авторката тук се е престарала и нещата не са и се получили.
Иначе в книгата се срещат хубави цитати, затова й давам 2,5/5🌟

„Книгите са лукс – свят, в който можеш да се изгубиш, когато пожелаеш.“

Това беше моето мнение, ако някой друг също я е чел ще се радвам да прочета какво мисли за книгата в коментарите.💗👇
Profile Image for Aparna Preethi.
Author 2 books39 followers
July 30, 2018
I actually thought it was some paranormal or psychotic thriller until it hit me. The book was actually about a young girl, who wanted to hide her evil side, then wanted to know her identity, later couldn't accept her identity she found and at the end creating her own identity. This was the actual plot I got from the tale. Though it was not much satisfactory, the crisp of love was quite acceptable. But it was sad that the plot being not so strong, the reader could be easily distracted by the outside world. This book is not really for the ones who wanted to skip reality and enjoy the fictional world. It forgot to grip the reader to the tale, the mandatory thing for any novel!! Sadly I completed my Reading Challenge with this book so fortunately or unfortunately, it will be remembered!
Profile Image for Lauren James.
Author 16 books1,440 followers
December 8, 2017
Really dark story about a girl falling apart and running away to Brazilian favelas. Travelogue meets Jekyll & Hyde.
Profile Image for Vendea.
1,476 reviews157 followers
February 27, 2018
Emily Barr můžete znát jako autorku Jediné vzpomínky Flory Banksové. Ella Black je její nová knížka, o jejíž existenci jsem neměla nejmenší tušení. Měla jsem velký problém s hodnocením, protože tahle knížka je jako Flora Banks - iritovala mě, jenže to nakonec dávalo smysl. Prostředí Brazílie je super, na druhou stranu mi některé věci přišly málo uvěřitelné. A ta kind of "instalove". Ta byla na začátku NOPE.


This one was... strange. I'd love to give Ella more credit and higher rating, but I just...can't. I've read One memory of Flora Banks not that long time ago and it was not bad. I hated it most of the times, but the ending and conclusion? Brilliant. Kind of same with The Truth and Lies of Ella Black. I liked Ella when she was herself. Not when she was Bella though. I didn't understand if Ella's just being schizo or not... I also didn't like the plot twist after they arrived in Brazil. That was just not what I expected. And the instaromance... ugh. It got better though, in the end. And I liked that. A lot.

I love setting in Brazil. It was not that beliavable but I didn't care for this one. I just like the country. Conclusion was nice too. I enjoyed days Ella spent in the school there. As I said before, I didn't care about the lies about Ella's background, so this part left me totally unmoved. Did I like this better than Flora Banks? Yeah, probably. Ella was not as annoying as Flora, which was good. Still, I can't get over somet things... so...

Profile Image for Sara Oxton.
3,336 reviews12 followers
November 7, 2017
The Truth and lies of Ella Black a powerful five-star read. This is a book that I loved and I know my teenage god daughter will love as well, it’s a story that people off all ages will get. I hope when I give a copy to my god daughter it sparks a passion for reading that a similar book my aunt gave me when I was a similar age to her had on me, that book altered the course of my life and I think this book has a similar power. There is a certain 40 days and 40 nights parallel to this story as its told over 40 days and Ella was a character I couldn’t get enough of. Ella is almost to intelligent for her own good, she has a bratty side to her but also a good side hidden underneath. The plot can be a little fanciful, but I read to escape and be taken to a different life, I don’t want reality so I enjoyed that.
I have loved Emily Barr’s adult books and now I’m a huge fan of her YA books as well. Well done on a job well done. Can’t wait to read more from a talented and thrilling writer.
Profile Image for Alison.
948 reviews64 followers
November 6, 2017
Argh!!! This book, I don't really know where to begin. I'm so confused and don't really know what to think about it. I apologize in advance, this review is going to be messy.

OK, let me start by saying I was so excited about this book. I absolutely adored The One Memory of Flora Banks and would rate it as one of my favorite books of the year so when I heard the author had another book coming out I couldn't wait to get my hands on it. Flora Banks was by no means the perfect read but there was something about it that just made me happy and hopeful.

The Truth and Lies of Ella Black while having some similarities in writing style couldn't be more different in the feelings it generated in me. Within about the first 30 pages I felt so uncomfortable and sick I really wasn't sure I could continue with it and was pretty close to putting it down.

I decided to give it the benefit of the doubt and carry on but I'm still not entirely sure that was the right decision as this was the first of many moments that made me extremely uncomfortable and not in a good way. The story is intriguing in a lot of ways and it makes for some quick reading but it's also seriously disturbing, beginning pretty near the start with main character using a hammer to kill a small bird her cat has brought in. This wouldn't be so bad if she was simply putting it out of her misery but she takes such joy in it that it turned my stomach. I'm afraid animal cruelty is a bit NO for me and this just seemed to be there for shock value.

Of course it wasn't Ella who killed the bird it was her evil inside voice, Bella (aka Bad Ella) who took over like she always does to do evil, nasty and violent things which takes me on to the second thing that made me uncomfortable. This whole evil alter ego thing just felt so wrong to me and made it incredibly difficult to have any kind of empathy for Ella and she is not the most likeable of characters to begin with. She's whiny, stroppy and down right horrible to her parents and that's when she's good Ella.

The storyline is a little bit far fetched, her parents suddenly pull her out of school in the middle of the day and they all flee to Rio for some mysterious reason they won't tell her, but I probably could have gone with this if it wasn't so oddly done and Ella's reaction and actions had been a little more believable. Once the reasons for the flit are revealed the story does pick up a bit (helped my less Bella) and I must admit I found myself unable to put it down, eager to find out how it would all end. If there's one good think I can say there's nothing predictable about it.

The secondary characters don't really get a huge amount of depth to them and most are there and gone again in the blink of an eye. I personally would have liked a bit more of Jack but sadly that was not to be. There is some romance in the story but honestly I think it's possibly the worst romance I've ever come across in YA fiction. It's insta love on rocket fuel. Their eyes meet, Ella knows he's the one and within a few hours Ella has had the best night of her life (she's 17), is ready to sleep with him (she's never even kissed a guy) and is in love (???).

As for the love interest Christian, he just gave me the creeps. He's a little bit older, plies her with alcohol despite knowing she's 17 and makes sleazy comments about how she's not in school right now *I may be sick*. No, No, No. Also Ella's immediate reaction that she's glad she did all that exercise and watched what she ate so she had a great body she could show off to him was all kinds of wrong. I'm sure a lot of teenage girls do think that but please don't put it in books as it legitimizes it.

The writing is ok, it's pretty simple and I felt that Ella read a little younger than 17 but it makes for easy and quick reading. I personally would have liked a bit more in the way of dialogue and even a bit more fun in the story but hey ho.

Overall, I'm afraid I will have to say this book was a bit of a disappointment. It's great in terms of originality but there was just too much that made me uncomfortable for it to be an enjoyable read.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy of the book. As always my thoughts are my own.
Profile Image for María P..
159 reviews82 followers
October 13, 2018
La verdad y las mentiras de Ella Black es un libro de género dramático escrito por la autora Emily Barr, también conocida por el libro El último recuerdo de Flora Banks.
Este libro narra la historia de Ella Black, una joven inglesa que lucha día a día con un terrible secreto, un impulso destructor al que llama Bella y que se apodera de sus actos. En lo que parece ser un día normal, sus padres se presentan de manera precipitada en el instituto y la fuerzan a irse con ellos a un viaje secreto a Brasil. Desconocedora del motivo, Ella tendrá que enfrentarse allí a otro terrible secreto, y descubrirá que su existencia se cimenta sobre un engaño. Sorprendida y disgustada por el descubrimiento, emprenderá una búsqueda desesperada para desvelar las verdades y mentiras de su vida.

En primer lugar he de decir que el libro me ha parecido muy interesante y que no podía dejar de leer. Resulta muy adictivo porque tiene los ingredientes perfectos para ello: mucha acción, misterio, giros en la trama y es fácil de leer. Sin embargo, cuando te paras a evaluar detenidamente el libro, uno se da cuenta de que hay algo que falla. En mi opinión, el hilo argumental del libro tiene una base muy poco sólida. Es decir, la historia se cimenta en una serie de causas que a mi parecer no tienen tanta fuerza como para tirar de todo un libro, y eso se traduce en que la autora tiene que estar constantemente buscando excusas al comportamiento de los protagonistas y a lo que sucede. Con esto me quiero referir a algo que sucede en el libro, que no puedo mencionar porque se consideraría spoiler, y que es por lo que sucede todo lo demás. Para mí, este suceso no tiene tanta importancia o no es tan sumamente grave como para ser la causa de toda la historia.

El comienzo del libro es bastante intenso y con mucho misterio y acción, lo que hace que no puedas dejar de leer. Al principio el libro resulta bastante novedoso, pero llega un momento en el que la historia entra en un bucle donde la protagonista va dando vueltas en círculo, y a mí me ha llegado a angustiar bastante. En cuanto al final, me ha decepcionado un poco, puesto que me esperaba algo totalmente distinto y es que parece que la autora juega con el lector desde el principio, y eso es algo que no me ha gustado.
También me gustaría destacar algunos temas que trata el libro, como el Trastorno de Identidad Disociativo, y es que no me ha parecido del todo correcto cómo la autora lo aborda. Si bien es cierto que en ningún momento le da nombre, sí que da pistas sobre él y da a entender que se trata de algo voluntario que uno puede decidir tener (¡qué barbaridad!). Me hubiera gustado que se aclarase más este tema y se le hubiera dado otro enfoque. Otro asunto que trata es la maldad, y es que parece ser que para la autora la maldad es hereditaria (¿en serio?), no tengo nada más que añadir. Y ya por último, la para nada verosímil historia de amor entre Ella y Christian, un chico que conoce en el hotel de Brasil. Se produce aquí lo que comunmente se denomina como "amor a primera vista". Entiendo que dos personas se puedan sentir atraídas en un principio, pero de ahí a remover cielo y tierra por alguien a quien ni siquiera conoces...

En cuanto a la protagonista, Ella me ha parecido una chica bastante inmadura que huye de los problemas en lugar de afrontarlos, y que toma unas decisiones que no son del todo correctas. Dejando a un lado su trastorno, tiene una actitud muy infantil, pese a sus dieciocho años, y un comportamiento que no es adecuado. Confía en personas que no conoce y deja tirados a aquellos que han formado parte de su vida desde siempre.
El estilo narrativo de la autora me ha parecido muy bueno, y es que tiene un lenguaje bastante directo y una forma de escribir que me ha gustado bastante. Sin embargo, creo que falla un poco en el desarrollo de la trama y a la hora de darle motivos a los personajes.

En conclusión me ha parecido un libro bastante adictivo y que cuenta con mucha acción, misterio y giros en la trama. A pesar de ello, creo que le falta un motivo de mayor peso para justificar todo lo que ocurre en el libro.
Profile Image for Lucy.
1,355 reviews29 followers
May 3, 2018

Now that's over, I'll move onto the actual book. I was not impressed. Even moving aside from the glaring issue I yelled about in the spoiler above, this was not a book I would have reviewed well.

Let's start with Ella. She drives me up the freaking wall. She's a selfish person who is completely illogical, not fully developed as a character (she likes art? I don't know, we don't really see it apart from when it's plot convenient) and everything manages to work out for her despite the numerous risky decisions she takes. And her split personality, whatever it is, is resolved by the end without needing anything but the truth. By the end of the book, I wasn't entirely sure what Ella's goal had been in the book and I was actively rooting against her. Ella becomes homeless for a little while and she starts to think all these things about how she would give all her money to homeless people as soon as she was home and she would never judge them for what they did with their money now she's experienced what they have. This is so superior and made me want to slap her, especially since I was sure she would have forgotten all about it by the time she was back home again.

Not to mention how Lily and Jack, Ella's friends, are built up to be this big part of her life but they never show up again at all. I loved Lily and Jack, they were two characters that I would have liked to see more of and I am incredibly disappointed the story moved to Peru and we didn't see them again. I did wonder why they were friends with Ella since she didn't seem to bring anything to the table apart from being blah as anything.

Then there was the romance. I have a high tolerance for insta-love, I find it quite sweet in fiction and I quite like in YA. But I hated Christian and Ella together. I don't believe they're in love, I think Christian was just brought in so Ella had someone her age she knew in Brazil after she runs away, not to mention Christian being the most blandest character around. Even more so than Jasmine who is just there to make things more convenient for Ella.

Unlike All The Missing Girls, bland characters were not made better by an exciting plot. The plot was dull, so were the characters and I am immensely glad I didn't spend any actual money on this. There were a few odd scenes which I liked and I was interested in a few of the side characters so I'm going to give this book 2 stars!
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