A murder ‘mystery’ in the vein of slasher movies where a group of teens are lured into a mansion as part of a revenge plot, This Lie Will Kill You doesn’t really keep us in suspense. It is pretty predictable in its set-up, as well as the identity of both the ‘bad guys’ – the one who caused the murder and the one who is taking revenge on behalf of the victim. It, however, has a well-written character-driven story that takes us through the relationships between the five teens, the circumstances leading up to the murder and how they were maneuvered by the ex-boyfriend from hell into going just that one step too far. Told through each of the teens in third person perspective, we get to see the pieces of terrible things, and how they are being covered up.
As a bad guy, Parker is extremely infuriating. To be honest, if Brianna wouldn’t have even waited till he entered the mansion to strangle him with the rope he brought in, that too would have been fine. He is manipulative, stalkery, and obsessed with Ruby, his ex who he is abusive towards. Ruby, for her part, is still not over the death of Shane, the boy who died and who she loved; she is also a survivor of abuse (from her father) and is trying to escape from Parker’s attempts to get her back. Juniper, Ruby’s ex best friend, is a smart character who senses how shady it is, but comes to protect Ruby. Brett, meanwhile, comes with a guilty conscience already and a troubled heart. As they get going with the game, the story spills out, and yes, it is pretty much what you expect it to be. What I didn’t expect it to be was so dramatic (now I see why it has been likened to Riverdale in its synopis – some of the characters are so extra). The writing is okay, but the characters do seem exaggerated at times; even the dialogue at times felt too cheesy and metaphorical for a bunch of teens to talk in. The ending is also stretched out to give more insight into the motives and backstory of a character.
In short, this is a mystery plot that is more driven by the characters, than the twists and motive.