Reading/Interest Level: Young Adult
Author: Michelle Zink
For 10 years, Grace Fontaine had everything she wanted--a family. However, it came with a cost: she had to lie and steal in order to follow her new “family rules.” After a successful con in Arizona, the family decided to do their biggest heist yet: steal 20 million dollars in gold from a family in Playa Hermosa, California. Grace and her brother Parker have to get involved with Logan, the son of the millionaire they’re going to rob, but things go wrong when she starts falling in love with him. She realizes that her actions are wrong and Parker confesses he doesn’t want to have that lifestyle anymore. After a few months of spying, her “friend” Rachel starts suspecting Grace when she manages to steal her old Arizona ID card, so they have to move quickly. Grace succeeds in distracting Logan, and the Fontaines’ steal the gold. However, Parker gets caught, and her mother betrays them and leaves with all but one brick of the gold. The epilogue reveals that Grace will go back to save Parker.
Lies I Told is an outstanding beginning to Michelle Zink's duology. Full of suspense from the beginning, the author immediately lets her audience into Grace's mind and understand her naive sixteen-year-old personality. Although it has some funny parts, the book makes readers ponder topics like loyalty, family ties, and morality. Is Grace’s truly responsible for her actions, or is it her parents' fault? Where would she go, and what would she do if she didn’t have them? These are questions that Grace must figure out for herself. This book contains young adult themes such as romance, drinking, high school drama, and recreational activities. Many teens can identify with Selena’s quiet, but noble personality, Grace’s confusion and inner battle, and Logan’s meek and cheerful nature. It would be a good book to read in an ethics class because readers can decide for themselves if what she did was right or wrong. The cliffhanger ending will make the reader want to peruse the book’s sequel Promises I Made to find out what happens with Grace, her brother, and all her friends in Playa Hermosa. Fast-paced and thrilling, a must read.
*Contains mild sexual content, moderate violence, and severe language.