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One of Us Is Lying #3

One of Us Is Back

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The explosive third and final thrilling instalment in the acclaimed One of Us... series.

Ever since Simon died in detention, life hasn't been easy for the Bayview Crew. First the Bayview Four had to prove they weren't killers. Then a new generation had to outwit a vengeful copycat. Now, it's beginning again.

At first the mysterious billboard seems like a bad joke: Time for a new game, Bayview. But when a member of the crew disappears, it's clear this 'game' just got serious - and no one understands the rules.

Everyone's a target. And now that someone unexpected has returned to Bayview, things are starting to get deadly.

Simon was right about secrets - they all come out in the end.

The thing is, Simon was right about secrets-they all come out, eventually. And Bayview has a lot it's still hiding.

368 pages, Kindle Edition

First published July 25, 2023

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About the author

Karen M. McManus

23 books29.4k followers
Hi, and thanks for stopping by my Goodreads page! I don't visit this site often, so the best way to reach me is via my website at www.karenmcmanus.com, or on Twitter/Instagram, where I'm @writerkmc.


Karen M. McManus is a #1 New York Times and international bestselling author of young adult thrillers. Her work includes the One of Us Is Lying series, which was turned into a television show on Peacock and Netflix, as well as the standalone novels Two Can Keep a Secret, The Cousins, You’ll Be the Death of Me, and Nothing More to Tell. Karen's critically acclaimed, award-winning books have been translated into forty-two languages and have sold more than seven million copies worldwide.

To learn more, visit www.karenmcmanus.com or @writerkmc on Twitter and Instagram.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,262 reviews
Profile Image for Nilufer Ozmekik.
2,316 reviews44.2k followers
August 23, 2023
The Bayview Crew is back and better than ever! It couldn't be truer that the third time's a charm, as this book is by far the best novel in the series. It masterfully brings together characters of two previous books as founders of the murder club with the original Bayview Four Members. Even the villains from the first book are back, with their own narrations. Fortunately, Simon is not returning as a ghost to haunt the Bayview Four, but we do get to read his narration from six years ago. The contribution of the villains is important in answering so many questions about the past and connecting them with the wrapping up of the new mystery.

 At first, I had some hesitations about how the author would equally insert each character into the story, but I take back my words because she managed to do it impeccably. The main narrators are Phoebe from the second book, whose sister left the country after her connection with their father's killer's death was revealed, and Phoebe also discovered the ugly truth about her little brother's involvement in the murder. Nate, whom I would save from death if I had to choose two characters, Addy, who nearly got killed by her ex Jack and is now reviewing her sexual orientation while bonding with her sister who is expecting, and surprise surprise, we have narrations from Jack and Simon to reveal events from six years ago that may help us understand many unanswered questions from the entire series and look at the characters from different perspectives.

 This time, the main mystery starts with a billboard hack displaying a bad joke and an eerie message that warns something earth-shattering is about to come out. On top of that, Jack gets an early release from prison and starts lurking around the Bayview area with his probation officer, giving Addy extra nightmares from their dark past. Then, one of the Bayview Crew is kidnapped during Nate's house party. Could Jack be involved in this kidnapping? Is he planning to make them pay for putting him behind bars?

With the Rojas sisters' research skills and Bronwyn's logical assumptions, Cooper, Nate, Kris, and Luis' muscle power, Addy and Phoebe's determination to release the past that holds them back, they make the perfect team to reveal the new mystery threatening their town.

I have to say, it was an amazing experience to spend more time with the characters I truly loved. I have soft spots for both Nate and Cooper! I couldn't guess the culprit until the end. The pacing was riveting and extra exciting, making me sit on the edge of my seat, biting my nails, barely gathering my composure, and stuffing popcorn into my mouth as if I were watching my favorite thriller movie. It's even more enjoyable than binge-watching the Scream series!

I'm not sure this will be the last time we see the Bayview Crew, and I never say no to another installment, but I'm telling you, this is the best book in the series, and you shouldn't miss it!

Many thanks to NetGalley and Random House Children's/Delacorte Press for sharing the digital copy of one of the most anticipated books of 2023 in exchange for my honest thoughts.

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Profile Image for Lia Carstairs.
413 reviews2,322 followers
Want to read
May 7, 2021
[May 7, 2021]:

TITLE REVEAL AND I WAS SO OFF💀💀 One of Us is Back... wow that doesnt sound concerning at all still think One of Us is Dead sounded cooler

[May 4, 2021]:


i knew there'd be a 3rd book😌 betting its going to be called One of Us is Dead
Profile Image for megs_bookrack.
1,607 reviews10.8k followers
Want to read
October 2, 2023
We have a cover!!!

And honestly, I just want to take a moment and say thank you to the cover designers for McManus' books. Staying with this theme through all the recent releases, whether they are part of a series or not, is such a great choice. I love how they all look together on the shelf!!!


Buckle up, McManus fans, we're going back to Bayview High in 2023!!! My unedited initial reaction...

Profile Image for Haadiya.
153 reviews73 followers
Want to read
May 14, 2021
One of Us Is Back? Jake is that you???
Profile Image for A Mac.
816 reviews140 followers
June 28, 2023
It’s two months after the last shenanigans occurred in Bayview, and the Bayview Crew are all back in town for the summer. A billboard soon shows up with an ominous line that suggests they’re not in for a peaceful summer. And when a member of their crew disappears one evening, they know that things are serious. But this time, no one knows the rules and it’s just getting started.

This is the third (and final?) book of this series. I’m honestly not entirely sure why this one exists. It’s a solid 25% through the book before anything happens aside from becoming reintroduced to the characters and their relationships, regrets, and rehashing the first two books. Then it’s almost another 25% before something else happens. And then it’s not until the last 20% of the book that the pace picks up to anywhere remotely close to being a “thriller mystery.” But by that point I wasn’t engaged with the minimal plot or mystery, which made it difficult to feel invested in the ending.

One of the things I disliked about this book was that it combined the characters from the first and second books. This left many characters being juggled around, including many characters that were never that strong or well written to begin with, that most of the MCs from the previous books didn’t have a meaningful presence in this one. The characterization in this book is also weak. Their voices are not unique – the POV swaps between Pheobe and Addy in this book, and they sound so similar that when I put the book down in the middle of a chapter, I’d have no clue whose POV I was reading when I picked it back up again. I did like that Nate was given a bit of character growth since the first book, but even his voice often sounded like the girls’. This lack of compelling and well written characters made the slow pace almost unbearable.

I don’t feel that this book is a necessary read – if you liked the first one, and/or second one, it would be reasonable to stop there. My thanks to NetGalley and Random House Children’s for allowing me to read this work, which will be published July 25th, 2023. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own.
Profile Image for ☀︎El In Oz☀︎.
562 reviews324 followers
Want to read
May 5, 2021
Ms Karen McManus be doing God’s work for giving us a thriller mystery every year for 5 years straight, she’s keeping us fed
Profile Image for Lucy Tonks.
503 reviews742 followers
Want to read
June 15, 2021
Excuse me, we are getting a third book?


The title is weird ngl. Really nothing better other than One of Us is Back? The previous books have way cooler titles.

seeing the release date is for 2023 *glares*
Profile Image for Amina .
406 reviews234 followers
August 16, 2023
✰ 2.75 stars ✰

“But we all know what Bayview’s real game is, right?” she continues. “Revenge. Except they keep doing it wrong.

Nobody ever targets people who are actually guilty. Even though this town is full of them.”

Inquiring minds would really like to know, what was the sole purpose of One of Us Is Back; because for the life of me, I cannot figure out why it was necessary to write this sequel? Simply to give us justifications for the motives behind why these kids acted the way that they originally did, and also to introduce us to a new mystery, that didn't even need to be written for this series?! 😒😒

“What’s the point of doing the right thing when assholes like that never bother, and get whatever they want anyway?”

That really surprised me - it's one thing for a sequel to wrap up existing storylines - but to hash out a whole other copy-cat mystery to the scene of the crime - to try to explain the rationality behind the first acts from the first book - to introduce the culprits, only to have their outcomes be so unresolved and highly conveniently unexplained just in order to give the heroes a happy ending. 😶 The new mystery was flimsy at best, completely out of the scope of the plot, and just felt like it was contrived - that it didn't make me feel any sympathy or connection or even remorse for the characters - the good ones or the bad ones. 😮‍💨😮‍💨

“The kids in this town are flat-out horrible, aren’t they?”

Indeed, some of them were, so much so, that again, I don't like that YA authors resort to making the police force completely oblivious to the crimes - please, it would not hurt to bring some forth of realism to the stories. Just writing them off, as a work force that is not taking the crimes or deaths seriously, all the more annoyed. ☹️ And then, to have the ending, not even bring decent closure to all the characters - it leaves it all so wishy-washy, and even makes me believe that there may be a spin-off or sequel in the works, because it still left some story lines hanging! It was as if, it was written for the sole intent of making the bad guys completely unlikable and not even redeemable for their cause of actions.😩😩

“Human unpredictability,” she says with a shrug. “People are full of surprises, even when you think you know them.”

Despite my annoyances, please allow me to highlight the few points that I did appreciate. Thank you for providing that brief overview of the character's at the start - it gave me a brief reminder as to who each person was. Thank you for limiting the story to only a few selective perspectives - as vast as a cast, it was, the selected few were, honestly the most important to the story and helped navigate the story in a better streamline. 👍🏼👍🏼 Thank you for showing the camaraderie between the Bayview Crew - they've all experienced a lot and their concern and care for each other was duly noted. Thank you for the little twist at the end - as cliché as the reveal was, it honestly caught me by surprise. Thank you for writing the unnecessary sequel with clear, concise and direct writing - having it straight-forward and simple kept the pace flowing. 👌🏻

“Secrets are power ---”

Apart from that, I'm glad I'm able to put this series behind me - I'm always up for a good YA mystery-thriller, but I'd always love it more if it rounds up in a satisfactory fashion. 😞 Sadly, this did not do it for me, but, perhaps, down the line, if a book stands as a stand-alone, I might be tempted to pick up another one of her books in the future.
Profile Image for dhuha.
176 reviews36 followers
Want to read
May 4, 2021


i have to wait that long?!
y'all i might need oxygen
Profile Image for Charlotte May.
721 reviews1,121 followers
September 23, 2023
Loved this third instalment in the Bayview series!

All of our favourite characters are back, plus one character no one wanted to see return.

The murder club are once again thrown into a mystery when Phoebe is kidnapped and found in an equipment shed they worry who will be next.

Another fantastic mystery that wrapped up really well with non stop excitement along the way!
Profile Image for kimberly ☆.
239 reviews3,901 followers
July 6, 2023
5/5 stars

thank you so much berkley for this arc

so this book was my most anticipated read of the year so far and it absolutely did not disappoint! being back in bayview is truly a dream come true, i missed my bayview four plus some more and all the content we got of them was so sooo fun to read! the mystery in this book is truly top tier, the stakes are infinitely raised and with more lives at risk this time around you really never know what’s coming next! there’s so many emotions i had while reading this book, the sweet moments between our established couples, and budding relationships was something i couldn’t get enough of, i love my babies for real. the action in this book will really keep you on your toes and looking over your shoulder more than once. i loved this book and if your looking for a murder mystery book with a little bit of everything, i’d say to definitely pick this one up!
Profile Image for Bookishrealm.
2,086 reviews5,080 followers
September 9, 2023
Honestly, I'm back and forth between a 3 and 3.5 on this one so I'm going to leave it as a 3 for the moment. I have some interesting thoughts about this one. CW: death, kidnapping, physical violence, murder

One of Us Is Back is the third and maybe the final book in the One of Us Is Lying series. Readers return to Bayview to meet with the characters that they meet in books 1 and 2. While there is a new mystery to deal with in the pages of this installment, McManus revisits the pasts of both Simon and Jake who play pretty pivotal roles in the first book. Like always, there are secrets that need to be revealed to finally give our cast of characters some peace.

What Worked: To be honest, the most interesting part of this book was Owen's character study. While I can't reveal much about him for the fear of spoiling book 2, I was really concerned for him as a character. Fortunately, McManus takes the time to explore how those events impacted him mentally and emotionally. Though part of it felt extremely surface level, I was relieved to see that Owen was given the space to work through his very complicated emotions. Additionally, McManus knows how to write a pretty messy narrative and the messy part of my spirit really enjoyed learning why Simon and Jake were so connected in the first place. I figured that the basis of their relationship was toxicity, but I didn't expect it to be as messy as was revealed in the pages of this book. I also felt validated in my feelings that Jake was trash from the get go. There was also some great development with Nate that I've been wanting to see since the first book. His relationship with Bronwyn is truly heartwarming.

What Didn't Work: Eh....I'm not sure that this book was really needed for the series as a whole. Granted, as I stated before, I was happy to see a more firm conclusion to Owen's narrative, but part of me feels like there were too many characters. McManus makes the ultimate decision to keep the perspectives limited to Nate, Phoebe, and Addy with a few past narratives narrated by Jake and Simon. However, most of the characters from the first and second book are in some shape or form involved with the mystery. It felt convoluted and it takes so long for anything to really happen. While I'm a fan of recaps, I think McManus took too much time trying to catch readers up since there was such a huge publication gap between this book and the second book. Because I reread the first and second book this year, I was well aware of everything that led up to the events of this book which led to the first portion of this book being a bore. Though it wasn't noticeable before because of their roles in different books, the authorial tone for Phoebe and Addy was very similar. There were a few times that I had to remind myself of the perspective that I was engaging with because it became so easy to confuse the two characters. There was also this sudden exploration of Addy's sexuality that didn't always feel genuine. It reminded of how McManus used Cooper's sexuality to drive the narrative in the first book. With less focus on the recap and more on the secrets that drove Jake and Simon to make the decisions they made in the past, I think this could have been a more successful story.

Overall, this was a solid read. I'm not sure that I would consider it a necessary read to get an understanding of the series. Part of it felt like a stretch because of the popularity that the series is currently experiencing; however, I understand why fans would want to dive back into the characters and town of Bayview. I'm not sure if I will be continuing if there are any more additions to the series, but I'll make that decision when we get to that point.
Profile Image for ✨ A ✨ .
433 reviews1,791 followers
September 5, 2023
“What is Bayview best known for? Revenge.”

One of Us is Back seriously wove the threads of the previous books in this satisfying way! 🙌 The characters from book one and two coming together? It's like getting that sweet dose of nostalgia while being shook by the intrigue!

The writing was hella engaging and KMM's talent in setting that eerie vibe with these well written characters was 🤯! Reading this book is like binge-watching a Netflix series you CAN'T stop 📺💥

Those flashback chapters from Jake and Simon? BRUH. Unsettling and had me on edge! 🕵️‍♂️💥 The final plot twist had me dead.

Low-key sad to say goodbye to the series, but this book? It's the PERFECT ending to the Bayview crew's journey! 😭✨

Thank you to penguin random house for the e-Arc>
Profile Image for ..
106 reviews20 followers
April 9, 2023
[May 3rd, 2021]: karen just announced the THIRD book in the One of Us is Lying series.. i cant believe this is real but GOD am i excited for this to come out in 2023... and its gonna have POVs from the squads of both previous books aaaaaaaaaaaa
Profile Image for erin.
98 reviews162 followers
Want to read
June 1, 2021

*glares at the publication date 2023 because how am I supposed to wait that long*
Profile Image for Linzie (suspenseisthrillingme).
313 reviews148 followers
September 3, 2023
Two years ago, Simon Kelleher and his gossip app had Bayview High in its grip. So when he died of a mysterious allergic reaction during detention, it inevitably became the talk of the town.

One year ago, an anonymous individual held the school spellbound as they played the ultimate game of Truth or Dare. One by one, secrets were again exposed, leading up to one massive near miss of a disaster.

Now, with all of the newly renamed Bayview Crew back home for the summer, they all just hope to enjoy some downtime together. But, of course, life in their small town is never simple—and rarely uneventful.

So when a billboard is spotted in town that reads “Time for a new game, Bayview” all thoughts turn to the past. But everyone hopes that surely this is just a prank. In bad taste, sure, but it can’t be anything more beyond that.

Then one of the tight knit group goes missing. With nothing to go on and no rules to reference, everyone is afraid of what this might mean. Who is behind the disappearance? And what else are they planning?

Yet again, however, it falls to the Bayview Crew to solve the mystery. Bronwyn. Cooper. Addy. Nate. Maeve. Phoebe. Knox. Luis. Kris. Any one of them might just be next. And with someone both old and new back in their midst, things could certainly become deadly once again.

After all, there was one thing that Simon was right about all along. Secrets have a way of working their way to the surface. And Bayview still has plenty left to behold.

If there’s one thing I know going into any Karen M. McManus book, it’s that it’s going to be one kick ass ride. For the most part, One of Us Is Back didn’t spoil the streak, but there were some very real disappointments at the same time. Perhaps, however, it was merely because I had such high, high expectations that it just didn’t quite live up to first two in the series.

Let’s start with the pluses though, shall we? Starting more or less where One of Us Is Next left off, the character development was truly divine. After all, we got to watch these teens grow up, learning unbearably hard lessons along the way. Through a handful of POVs, the gaps from the first two books were filled in and one altogether deep, dark secret was laid bare. But it was those characters that truly had me from hello. Complex and mostly true-to-life, I connected with one and all.

The plot itself was somewhat of a deviation from the first two in the series, with a definite lack of ugly secrets threatening to be exposed. Don’t worry, there were plenty, but without an app or game of Truth or Dare, the inherent danger of someone’s worst actions being made public somewhat lessened the overriding foreboding. Once the climax showed up, however, the slow burn trickle turned into an explosion of a reveal.

What other bits and pieces were total home runs? Well, I can’t forget to mention the utterly top-notch twist that I absolutely did not see coming. Then there was the *chef’s kiss* redemption arc for villainess Vanessa and the warm and cuddly found family trope that is always a slam dunk for me. So whole this full-circle narrative did leave some pieces uncharacteristically up in the air, the finale did provide the perfect closing scene to be sure.

Now, unfortunately, for the not so great aspects. First and foremost, there were A LOT of characters to keep straight. But the real drag of the book was how contrived it all felt. I can’t really explain without providing at least one massive spoiler, but needless to say, it all felt decidedly too far-fetched by the end. Unlike the first two in the series which had their own twisted premises, most of this one was spent regurgitating the past. It almost felt like the events taking place were a subplot versus the star attraction itself.

All said and done, though, I still had a blast riding shotgun with the intrepid sleuths of Bayview High. With the series seemingly at an end, I will be sad to see such truly dynamic characters go, but I nevertheless look forward to more by McManus in the future. After all, she’s one brilliantly talented author who manages to craft YA thrillers that work just as well for adults as they do for teens. And while this book felt unquestionably more like crime fiction than any I’ve read by her before, it still provided a compulsively readable storyline that had me flying through the pages until the very last word. If there’s one thing I’m holding out hope for, it’s one more book in this series featuring none other than Owen himself! After all, he’s about ready to start high school… What would be better than another revenge filled Bayview year? Rating of 4 stars.

Trigger warning: getting roofied, kidnapping, threats of violence, restraining order, stalking, assault, mention of: alcoholism, infidelity, death by gunshot
Profile Image for angeline (taylor's version).
89 reviews14 followers
August 18, 2023
Secrets are power, Simon thought as he pedaled away.

Oh my god. So.. I don't even know where to begin. I had some theories but then there was a twist that I never would've seen coming like at all. Also the redemption arc for Vanessa.. I actually liked which was not on my list. And Addy and Nate's friendship... omg! It was so sweet. I really loved the found family aspect of it all. And the flashback chapters of Jake and Simon's friendship and how it all fell apart was something I was really hoping we would get to see weather it be through a novella or like how they did it.

My only complaint was there were NONE, and I mean NONE, moments with Nate and Bronwyn or Maeve and Luis. And like the ending?! What happened with Phoebe and Knox. I need to know. Like your seriously not going to tell us.

Other than that though the book was amazing, and I can't believe this series is actually over. I'm going to miss it.
Profile Image for A place called Bookland.
123 reviews2 followers
Want to read
September 27, 2021
no idea ehat this is...pr what its abt...but i see it as a good sign!!


Profile Image for Amna.
455 reviews24 followers
Want to read
August 18, 2021
also, THE TITLE?! SO OMINOUS!! did simon not die? is he ressurected??
Profile Image for Aya.
667 reviews938 followers
August 3, 2023
I had a lot of fun reading the first 2 books but I didn't feel this final one. I felt it was unnecessary, Karen M. McManus should stop at book 2 and write other stuff.

The first 25% of the book was lots of recapping and it took me some time to remember the characters. Not much was happening until the last few chapters and I was almost ready to throw in the towel.

Sometimes, authors need to know that they don't need to continue the series just because it's popular.
Profile Image for Vritti ♡.
74 reviews2 followers
Want to read
May 29, 2021
Are you kidding me I can't wait for 2 years
Profile Image for yaybooks.
137 reviews12 followers
Want to read
May 3, 2021
Time to move to Africa and spend 2 years of my life in silent meditation bye guys✌
Profile Image for crystal.
455 reviews621 followers
September 6, 2023
ugh the conclusion <3333 my heart is so 🥹🥹🥹 i <3 the murder club / bayview crew. but okay on the mystery note, I DIDNT SEE ANY OF THAT COMING OKAY I WAS BLINDSIDED 😭
Profile Image for Brittanie Parisien.
139 reviews27 followers
September 7, 2023
3.7/5 stars, the bayview kids wrap-up.

Characters from One of Us is Lying and One of Us is Next all join us in this novel to tackle a new case, as their past suddenly creeps up to haunt them. It’s always nice getting to revisit characters you’ve loved, to see where there at now. With that being said, it was kind of hard since there was now 9 people apart of the bayview crew. The story is still only told through a few POVs, but it definitely felt like too many people and too many side stories (not all of which were important) to keep track of at once.

This book gave us some deeper insight to Jake and Simon’s friendship from when they were kids which I really appreciated, as I felt it lacked in Book 1. McManus was able to mesh both timelines together well. At some points I felt like the pacing was off, like the book couldn’t get in a groove; I can attest this once again to the number of characters involved. Addy’s new crush/partner lacked development, which I wish we got more of.

Once again though, nobody does YA mystery like McManus. She keeps you guessing, makes you question even the smallest of details, and tells an exciting and twisted tale. If anything, I found the big “reveal” in this one to be the best paced out of the trilogy at revealing the truth. All and all, easy read. I think she wrapped up the story well, oh and McManus gave us some great BRONWYN/NATE CRUMBS!!!!
Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,262 reviews

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