Liars, Inc. by Paula Stokes | Book Review

Liars, Inc. by Paula Stokes | Book ReviewLiars, Inc. by Paula Stokes
Also by this author: The Art of Lainey
Published by Harper Collins on March 24th 2015
Genres: Young Adult, Mysteries & Detective Stories, Family, Orphans & Foster Homes, Love & Romance
Pages: 368
Format: ARC, eARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon
ISBN: 9780062238450
Goodreads
four-stars

A dark and twisted psychological tale that will keep readers guessing, perfect for fans of I Hunt Killers and Gone Girl.
Max Cantrell has never been a big fan of the truth, so when the opportunity arises to sell forged permission slips and cover stories to his classmates, it sounds like a good way to make a little money. So with the help of his friend Preston and his girlfriend, Parvati, Max starts Liars, Inc. Suddenly everybody needs something, and the cash starts pouring in. Who knew lying could be so lucrative?
When Preston wants his own cover story to go visit a girl he met online, Max doesn't think twice about it. But then Preston never comes home. And the evidence starts to pile up—terrifying clues that lead to Preston's body.
Terrifying clues that point to Max as the killer….

Writers who are versatile with their writing are kind of my favorite. Thus, it stands to measure that Paula Stokes is among my favorite authors. She’s gone from historical fantasy under a pen name to contemporary with finesse. The next undertaking by Paula Stokes that I’ve read is Liars, Inc. another book in a different genre. Liars, Inc is contemporary, but unlike The Art Of Lainey it is a thriller. It is not a fun book about using The Art Of War to get your ex back. I won’t lie, I was a little tiny bit under the impression that this book would be similar to Lainey but as usual my initial impression was WRONG. Not a bad thing at all, just putting that out there so that when you read this book you won’t be expecting adorable and hilarity. Instead, expect twists and turns.

Liars, Inc is centered around this kid, Max Cantrell. Max is a bit of a lone wolf, except that he has this girlfriend named Parvati and a best friend named Preston. Parvati and Preston are high school royalty and both come from money. Max, on the other hand, does not. The three, however, are above school politics. So, anyways, they decide to go into business together and do some shady dealings. They sell alibis, test answers, and more. The business is naturally called Liars, Inc. One day, Preston asks Max to be his alibi while he goes to Vegas to meet this girl from the internet, Violet. Max agrees to do this because Preston is his best friend, after all. Unfortunately, Preston goes missing and all signs are pointing to Max. Obviously Max did not do anything to Preston, but that’s not what the Feds believe and so, for Max it is a race against time to clear his name. Along the way Max will learn some unfortunate truths about himself, Parvati and Preston in this thrilling young adult novel.

One thing that differentiates Max Cantrell’s character from other young adult main characters is that he is adopted. He lives in a blended adoptive family. I cannot remember the last time I read a book with a character in a similar family situation. I know it does happen in other young adult books, but for some odd reason nothing is really springing to mind. Anyways, Max is your typical teenage boy. He’s rebellious. He thinks about Parvati and adult situations a lot. On the whole, he is not a bad kid, it is just that his financial situation and past at a Boys’ Home makes him seem shady compared to Preston who is a senator’s son and Parvati whose dad is like military special ops. Also? Max has kind of a smart mouth and that is awesome.

 

I think that the best parts of Paula Stokes’s Liars, Inc are the parts that include Parvati. She’s this total bad ass mother f-er. AND I LOVE IT. Like she wants to be a spy or CIA or something and so, she’s had lessons from her dad, kind of. She is very no nonsense. She is easily bored and so, above the high school politics. I love that. I love that her character is endlessly cool. She’s also far from perfect. Parvati’s past is a bit questionable and she has, indeed, lied to Max. Still, I think that she adds so much to the book, mainly because she steals all of the scenes that she is in.

If you’re the kind of person who likes phrases like ‘high octane’ this is the book for you. I am not typically a huge thriller reader, but for Paula Stokes, I will make an exception. Liars, Inc is a compelling read with several I did not see that coming moments. The characters are complex, infuriating, authentic teenagers. This is the sort of YA that I think appeals to both girls and boys, and I mean that in a non sexist way because we do, indeed live in a sexist world, but it is hopefully changing – anyways, gendering still happens and so, that’s why I say that this book is appealing across the gender spectrum. Okay, that aside, I definitely enjoyed this adventurous book and getting to the bottom of what really happened to Preston with Max.

four-stars
About April (Books&Wine)

April is 28 years old and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. In her free time she can be found reading, working out, or eating junk food. She often wears her sunglasses at night.

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