Book Blurb: Imogen is a runaway heiress, an orphan, a cook, and a cheat. Jule is a fighter, a social chameleon, and an athlete. An intense friendship. A disappearance. A murder, or maybe two. A bad romance, or maybe three. Blunt objects, disguises, blood, and chocolate. The American dream, superheroes, spies, and villains. A girl who refuses to give people what they want from her. A girl who refuses to be the person she once was.
Genuine Fraud is a masterful suspense novel from National Book Award finalist and Printz Award honoree E. Lockhart, author of the New York Times bestseller We Were Liars.
Hello everyone! Today I have for you my review for Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart. This book was the first one that I have ever been sent for review (shout-out to Delacorte Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House for sending it to me upon request)! So obviously this was a really big deal for me as it shows that this blog and my bookstagram are actually taking me somewhere in this industry. Not to mention the fact that I read E. Lockhart’s bestseller We Were Liars earlier this year and I loved it (to the point of me making my boyfriend read it too). So yes I went into this new release with high hopes…
My first point to make is that this book took me much longer to finish than it should have (one month and four days to be exact). I can blame this on me returning to uni and having other priorities but really it was due to the fact that I struggled to get into it. I was intrigued by the concept when I first read about it and having finished it now, I still love it but my biggest issue was the quality.
- The book is written backwards – meaning the beginning chapter is the second to last chapter (#18), each chapter goes back in time over a one year period (#17-#1), until you reach the final chapter in which it is the one after the first (#19). Sounds cool, right? It was, well would have been, if the time periods all made sense. The dates were in order but the events that were occurring didn’t seem to be as one chapter you would have just met a character but the next you already know them – even though you just went back in time. You can tell that Lockhart really tried to fully develop the characters and explain all of the confusing parts (eventually) by showing the past over time but even now I am still quite confused by like 60% of the book.
- Key moments/characters are introduced but not in full depth. There are the few key characters (ie. Imogen, Jule, and their love interests) but as far as the ones who turn out to be involved in twisting points of the story, they are just given a brief history and a reason to be where they are at the time. I just feel like if you are going to murder a character (or two…) then you should at least give a clear reasoning why. Well, besides the fact that the main character/murderer is clearly messed up.
- You don’t find out the main reason for the motive of the main character until one of the last chapters. I would be okay with this if it didn’t make everything even more confusing and just leave you hanging but sadly it did. It was definitely one of those moments for me where I said “Oh, wow. I really didn’t expect that.” but then followed that by saying “Wait what? That’s it?” I obviously won’t spoil the ending for you but if you do read this book, just be prepared to end it feeling lost.
My second, and last, point to make has to deal with the style and editorial side of this book. Yes I am a publishing student so this is necessary, sorry. There were so many things wrong with this book! One of my biggest pet peeves is to constantly have to fix grammar mistakes while reading a book. I really didn’t expect this as We Were Liars left me with such a high level of respect for Lockhart as a writer and Delacorte Press as a publisher but something definitely seemed to have gone wrong with this book. I don’t know if the copy editing side of this release was rushed but it read like an advanced copy even though it was then released to the public less than a week after I received it. No this did not really effect the story itself (I did enjoy it even though my first point seems to question that) but it was just a bit triggering for someone who is taught how to look for these type of mistakes in books. Maybe I overlooked them when I first read We Were Liars but it still wasn’t pleasant for Genuine Fraud to have such obvious ones.
Wow, this review turned into more of a rant than I expected. Sorry guys! I really did enjoy the book and I am grateful that I was sent it for review but I would definitely say that if you are interested in reading an E. Lockhart book read We Were Liars, if even first or only.
Thank you guys for reading this review! I would love to hear your thoughts on this book if you have read it yet or any other E. Lockhart book so let me know down in the comments below!
Would I suggest this book to a friend?: Yes but only if they like young adult mysteries and have already read We Were Liars.
Did I enjoy reviewing my first ever book sent from a publisher?: Yes! This was such a big deal to me and I really did enjoy it. My next book for review will be Chasing Charlie by Linda McLaughlan so be on the lookout for that!