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3.29  ·  Rating details ·  8,535 ratings  ·  1,643 reviews

Micah will freely admit that she’s a compulsive liar, but that may be the one honest thing she’ll ever tell you. Over the years she’s duped her classmates, her teachers, and even her parents, and she’s always managed to stay one step ahead of her lies. That is, until her boyfriend dies under brutal circumstances and her dishonesty begins to catch up with her. But is it

Hardcover, 376 pages
Published October 1st 2009 by Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
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Alex Coultrap It's meant to be targeted towards high school (I think) but I feel like it's more the middle school age group than anything. It does have some explici…moreIt's meant to be targeted towards high school (I think) but I feel like it's more the middle school age group than anything. It does have some explicit language but for the most part it's just tired cliches about high school and puberty lopped into the fact that we're dealing with an unreliable narrator. (less)

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Average rating 3.29  · 
Rating details
 ·  8,535 ratings  ·  1,643 reviews

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Rick Riordan
Jul 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Wow, this book. It only took me two days to finish, but I have a feeling it may take me several years to figure out what it meant and how I feel about it. It is compelling, thought-provoking, and deeply unsettling. Our narrator, a teen girl named Micah, tells us right up front that she is a liar. She lies about everything to everybody. She promises that she is about to come clean and tell us the truth about the death of her boyfriend Zach, who is brutally murdered during their senior year. But i ...more
Jun 14, 2011 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Emory's Defunct Profile
Sep 28, 2011 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: No one, ever
Shelves: reviewed
What a piece of ****. The premise is intriguing- a story told from the point of view of a compulsive liar, so you can never tell how much of her story is true or what she's really thinking. I thought it would be cool, but within twenty pages I hated the character. She's nothing more than a whiny, self-absorbed brat with serious mental issues who lies constantly for the fun of it, blames all her problems on other people, and saw nothing wrong with (possibly- she keeps changing her story) sleeping ...more
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
Micah is a liar. You can't trust anything she says. She will lie about telling the truth, and she will lie about lying. Attention-seeker, the shrinks say. Jealous of her little brother, they say. Does she even have a brother? Maybe she just made him up. Maybe she didn't. Maybe her dad is an arms dealer, maybe he isn't. But there's one thing Micah's lies have in common: they all hide the real truth.

Now Micah's boyfriend Zach has been found, dead, in Central Park. The place where they spent so muc
Sep 06, 2010 added it
I think my head just exploded.

No spoilers, but . . . when I first finished this book, I scratched my head a little and thought I *had* it, but I wasn't totally satisfied, and then I thought about it some more, and then the explosion, and I wanted to reread it at once.

The closest comparison I can think of is Life of Pi, in which the reading of the book is enjoyable but a little unsettlingly *off*, and then at the end something is suggested that casts everything else in a new and totally devasta
Oct 14, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: gag-worthy-book
While reading Liar, the reader is deceived from the beginning right up to the end by the unreliable narrator. Because Micah Wilkins, a pathological liar is the protagonist in this story and everything is from her point of view, the questions arise if anything she tells the reader is truth or lies on top of more lies from a very sick and delusional girl.

Liar is told in three parts. Part one is where Micah is “Telling the Truth”. We are introduced to the seventeen year old girl who lives with her
Mar 03, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
Shelves: 2010, ya
Can someone please, please tell me what this story was about? I dig the idea of an unreliable narrator, after all, I loved both "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd" and "Memento," but these stories only make sense if in the end you actually find out what exactly happened. No luck here, I am sure Larbalestier thinks she is a mighty smart writer, but the fact is the book has no point, no satisfying ending and leaves you guessing if anything in the story was true. Not fair to readers IMO, I feel cheated I ...more
Jul 22, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who like subjective POVs and mindtrips
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 27, 2009 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone that likes thrillers. Or anyone that likes YA. Anyone, really.
As I finished reading Liar's last page, rereading its last sentence at least five times, shivers ran up and down my spine and my mind was overrun with the same thought, only it seemed like I was thinking it a million times all at the same time: What the hell did I just read?

This book is perfection. Seriously. Look "perfection" up on a dictionary and they should have a picture of Liar as an example. This book transcends all genres it is supposed to be to become more than a YA book with a really
Nov 24, 2010 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of Psuedo-Psychological Thrillers
Recommended to Cory by: Sean Wills

I've wanted to read Liar for six months. Unfortunately, my library didn't have a copy and I didn't have enough motivation to purchase it. Now that I'm in college, I have full range to my university's YA selection. It's very expansive. I've had Liar on my desk for two weeks. I picked it up today and finished it in less than four hours.

Like Fight Club, or Psycho, or The Sixth Sense, I went into Liar knowing the big secret. That didn't make it less exciting. On the contrary, I wanted to read it de
Jan 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I first heard of Liar when everyone was talking about the controversy surrounding the original cover. I filed it away in the back of my mind, thinking of picking the book up when it came out. I was reminded of it recently when friends started to talk about it again -- through having read it, now -- and put it on my last minute Christmas list. Cue me getting it in the mail yesterday, and being almost unable to resist the lure of the first page, which starts with the hook, "I was born with a light ...more
Initial Thoughts: Wow, interesting novel indeed, and not quite what I expected coming into it. I think part of my enjoyment of this novel came from listening to the narration by Channie Waites, but the other part was certainly following how interesting a narrator Micah turned out to be and describing these varied accounts. She may be a chronic liar, but she's certainly capable of telling a good story and making you think what might be the truth versus what isn't. I kept myself at an arms length ...more
Mar 20, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
This book was crazy.

Micah is a pathological liar who is dealing with her boyfriend's sudden death. The book is divided into three parts, (view spoiler). It's a big guessing game from start to finish.

The book goes back and forth, before Zach's death and after, as well as short glimpses into Micah's early childhood. After reading about her childhood, her family history, her personal
What in the eff did I just read?!

Like...I knew going into this book that Micah was an unreliable narrator. But this was........odd.

This book in summary: "So I have this friend. And this thing happened. Okay, so I lied. The thing didn't happen. This other thing happened instead. Okay, so I lied. I don't have this friend. I made them up. Okay, so I lied. That person exists but we're not friends."

Rinse and repeat for nearly 400 pages, with a side of (view spoiler)
Jul 20, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya
First off, after reading the book, the cover bothers the crap out of me. That girl looks nothing like Micah, not her hair or her skin color.

With most unreliable narrators, the reader slowly picks up on the fact that the narrator is unreliable based on small clues the narrator has dropped throughout the story. Here, Micah comes straight and tells you that she is a liar, that she lies about everything. Except the story she is about to tell you. This is going to be her grand entrance into the world
Oct 19, 2009 rated it really liked it
This is difficult. Hard to talk about without ruining anything, and also hard to really describe as an experience, let alone rate. This is a book about a seventeen-year-old black girl who is dating someone else's boyfriend, until he is brutally murdered. She's also a liar – whether pathological to the point where she believes her own lies or merely compulsive, it remains unclear to the very end.

Yeah, difficult, because there is a lot of really great stuff here. The three movement structure with
Cat Conner
Jul 12, 2010 rated it did not like it
"Liar" is an excruciatingly painful read. It is about a 17 year-old girl named Micah who is living with the ramifications of her compulsive lying and the death of her "boyfriend", Zach (I say boyfriend because Micah is actually Zach's woman on the side". Larbalestier splits the novel up into sections according to Micah's willingness to tell the reader the truth about Zach, her classmates, her family, and the mysterious "family illness" from which Michah suffers. Micah changes her stories, often ...more
Rhiannon Hart
Micah is a liar. She lies to her classmates. She lies to her parents. A boy at her school has just been murdered--a boy Micah's been involved with, a boy who is someone else's boyfriend. Micah has decided it's time to stop all the lies. She's going to tell the truth, to you. The whole truth. Honestly.

Going into this book was a very unusual experience. I usually begin a book with an open mind, ready to fall in love with the protagonist and his or her voice and character; ready to sympathise with
Jun 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing
The only honest thing Micah will ever tell anyone is that she’s a compulsive liar, and she is—a very skilled one. She’s tricked everyone from teachers and classmates to psychiatrists and her own parents into believing even the most outrageous lies—that she’s a boy, that her father is an arms dealer, just to name a couple. But why? Because for Micah, lies are so much easier—to tell and believe—than the truth. When Micah’s maybe-boyfriend Zach is killed, all Micah’s lies start to get tangled up, p ...more
Jan 12, 2010 rated it it was amazing
One of the best books I've read for those who enjoy a hearty, potentially contentious book discussion; one of the worst books I've read for those who don't care for ambiguity and frustration. Immediately upon finishing it I flipped back to the start and began rereading, until I'd completely skimmed through the whole book again. I've just browsed through the other Goodreads reviews here and disagreed with the conclusions reached by at least half of those marked as spoilers. I'm dying to delve int ...more
Nia Forrester
Okay, now I get it. I totally understand some of the bad reviews. I just happen to disagree. This book was very challenging. It defies labels. I don't know, even after reading it, whether it's a family drama, mystery, or fantasy-paranormal book. And that for me, makes it a little genius.

The 'Liar' for whom the book is named, is Micah, a seventeen year old girl(maybe) who looks a lot like a boy. So much so, that when mistaken for a boy she pretended to be one until she was discovered. But Micah
Mar 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Liar can be an absorbing and challenging puzzle of a book to read, rewarding almost as much as it keeps you in the dark. Or it can be annoying. Luckily, I was in the right mood to enjoy the puzzle.

Micah is our narrator and she is, as she tells us on the first page, a liar. But she'll tell us the truth. And the truth is that she didn't kill her Zach, her secret sort-of boyfriend. (Or did she?) Partway through the book, she "comes clean" again, telling us her true family secret. (This is where the
Sierra Randall
Nov 04, 2010 rated it did not like it
Shelves: annoying
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 03, 2009 rated it it was ok
I had to down my starrage because the more I think about this book, the less I like it.

I'm sorry; I don't think it comes together. I get that it's not SUPPOSED to but I don't think that's fair. I really like Justine Larbalestier's other work, but her defense of this one reads a little "I wasn't GOING for elegant, Heidi!" to me. Sure, it doesn't come together, it wasn't supposed to! But even if we doubted what happened, couldn't there be... more?

Also I feel because there was SO little we could tr
My review for this book can be found on my blog, the lowercase gimmick. ...more
Athira (Reading on a Rainy Day)
It is very rarely that I choose to read a book without knowing anything at all about it. Since I don't get much reading time per month, I like to have some idea of the books I read and also whether they have been well-received. Liar was an exception. I had no idea what this book was about, except that the protagonist, Micah, who is also the narrator, is a liar. Funnily, that is all you need to know. Anything else is a spoiler.

I've written a spoiler-free review, and I recommend that if you haven'
Jan 07, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, 2015
I should get a T-shirt that says, "I heart unreliable narrators," because I do, and I've been looking forward to reading Liar for years because this narrator is so unreliable she tells you straight out on the first page that she's a liar.

But now, she says, she's going to tell the truth.

...Or is she?

I hesitate to say very much about the character or the plot because much of the fun of the book is dissecting it yourself. In any case, there isn't a huge amount of "plot," per se, because the plot is
Nov 07, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult
Micah is a compulsive liar. It's been embedded into her personality from the day she was born. She weaves lies together like a seamstress creates clothing; with just the right amount of detail so she won't get caught. Micah believes that her lies are creating a better world, but when her boyfriend (or not) Zach is killed, then she'll have to question herself as well as all the lies she has told in the past.

This is one of the books where I finished it thinking "what?" It wasn't really bad, just s
Anna Pearce
Jul 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I plowed through this book in something like five hours, the only break being long enough to take the dog for a walk. When I finished it, the only thing I could say was "Holy shit, that was a great ride." I honestly cannot remember the last time I enjoyed a book this much. I was spoiled for part of it, and was worried (when I remembered that particular spoiler) that I was going to have ruined the book for myself, but no. No, knowing that Thing did not ruin this book in any way, because the ride ...more
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Sofia Allmon Book Review 7 1 1 Apr 06, 2018 08:57PM  
More complex than you'd think 2 49 Jun 11, 2013 09:47AM  
Lettori sui generis: Liar, II settimana (15-21 settembre): Seconda parte: La verità vera 19 18 Nov 05, 2012 05:55AM  

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Justine Larbalestier is an Australian young-adult fiction author. She is best known for the Magic or Madness trilogy: Magic or Madness, Magic Lessons and the newly released Magic's Child. She also wrote one adult non-fiction book, the Hugo-nominated The Battle of the Sexes in Science Fiction (Best Related Book, 2003), and edited another, Daughters of Earth: Feminist Science Fiction in the Twentiet ...more

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“Really, according to the shrinks, I am angry at everyone ever. Especially them.

I am all anger and resentment all the time.

Not one of them has ever suggested that maybe I lie because the world is better the way I tell it.”
“Who’s the bigger liar?

Me or them?

Isn’t lying about love the worst lie? Isn’t that worse than anything I’ve ever done?”
More quotes…