I recently read We Were Liars by E. Lockhart.
It seems that most readers either love, love, loved this book, or could barely finish it. I, meanwhile, ever the rebel, fell somewhere in the middle.
The writing of this novel was not particularly pleasant, to me, to read. I read one possibly humorous mention of the author’s use of metaphor being jarring, but I didn’t have a problem with that. I, personally, found the use of metaphor both apt and capable of drawing me into caring about the character a bit. There is also, however, a bit of breaking lines up like poetry, which bothered me a lot. Frankly, this practice was not done with enough frequency or poignancy to seem to have a point. It simply occurred once in awhile, seemingly for no reason, so why bother? Then, most of the writing was too simple to convince me I was reading the thoughts of a rich, white girl who had grown up with a good education. It was so simple, at first, I wasn’t really convinced the book was entirely worth my time. It was the fact that so many other readers have enjoyed it that kept me reading, with the promise of a twist at the end.
The twist did not pack as much of a punch as I was hoping, although I did not actually see it coming. It actually sort of horrified me, as in, how can you be okay with this… Yet I suppose that is the point. The narrator needs to come to a place of peace with something that is definitely not, and never will be, okay. This lesson is one that most of us could stand to learn from, I would imagine. I know that I could. From now on, I suppose I can internally tell myself If Cady can be okay with the terrible things that happened to her, then I suppose I can learn to live with some of the poor decisions I have made. And if you have read the book, yes I am referring to the fact that I haven’t… you know. (I’ll refrain from explicitly stating what occurs, lest you haven’t actually read the novel).
However, while the twist did not affect me as much as it did others, I did find myself thinking about the novel for days afterwards. So I suppose the novel did have an effect on me, despite the general simplicity of its’ writing, and the fact that I was unable to entirely sympathize with a privileged white girl who gets away with too much and is becoming okay with herself when she doesn’t seem like a very good person. Thus I remain, dear reader, on the fence.
Have you read the novel? What were your thoughts? Love? Hate? I would love to hear your thoughts! #commentplease