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The Last Time I Lied
The Last Time I LiedJoyStone (1)
Still Have Questions

I absolutely loved this book! But I can't help wondering why Vivian went back to the cabin alone that night? I think Emma had thought maybe coming back for the map to her diary, but when Emma found the box, the diary was in it but not the wig and fake id? So did she end up finding it without the map but just left her diary? Or had she taken the wig and fake id out before and never was able to go back and find the diary? Or maybe leave it purposely for Emma? I really just wish I knew why she went back to the cabin!

maddieonthemap (5)
I think she went so she could just go back to bed and then the other two girls would just be "lost" and no one would know the truth of what happened. Or she wanted to pick up some clothes or something.
The Last Time I LiedAlicia (1)
Need to Recap in Chronological Order

Major Spoiler Alert

Okay, hi, I just feel like I need to recap this book in chronological order! What with the various timelines and the details you figure out along the way. No one around me has read it, so since I can't discuss the details I'm just going to word vomit them here to get it all straight in my own mind.

Many many years ago:

-Charles Cutler (Lottie’s ancestor) runs an altruistic insane asylum for women, selling their hair for wigs to stay afloat. He eventually sells his land to Buchanan Harris (Franny’s ancestor), who then floods the valley to create Lake Midnight – the asylum still fully intact underneath the water.

16+ years ago: -Vivian's sister Katherine drowns. She suspects Allison and Natalie had something to do with it. She befriends them, thereby falling out with Becca.

-By the end of that following summer, Vivian finds the box with the scissors, sparking her interest in Peaceful Valley.

Summer 15 years ago:

-Vivian is on a quest to discover the secret to Peaceful Valley / exact revenge on Natalie and Allison.

--Question 1: Was her diary part of the plan, hoping it would be found after they were gone and would support her story of them all going exploring and disappearing? Is that why she gave hints to Emma? Did she intend for N and A to read it to spark their interest in order to follow her that night? OR was the diary genuine and Vivian was actually interested in discovering the secrets of PV, the revenge plan only fully forming once the girls confess to their involvement in Katherine’s death?

-Vivian then hides the diary and draws a map to return to it.

-Vivian gets the girls to confess to their involvement in Katherine's death. Revenge plan is on.

-Vivian hooks up with Ben, who Emma thinks is Theo. Vivian is using Ben to get the shovel which she later uses to knock the girls out.

--Question 2: Did she intend for Emma to see? Is that why she chose that particular shower stall, in order to ensure Emma is mad at her? Or was that just a coincidence and Vivian went with it?

-Vivian and the other girls sneak out – they think to help her with her mission – she plans to kill them.

--Question 3: When she comes back and is locked out, what was her intention? To grab the map to return to her diary? To actually return to normal life?

-Vivian then disappears and starts a new life, somehow.

-Emma wakes up and feels guilt for 15 years for not letting "the girls" back in that night. She points the finger at Theo, because she thinks he was hooking up with Vivian.

-Theo’s life spirals based off of that accusation. Emma begins having hallucination of the girls, etc. etc.

Present time:

-Chet decides to invite Emma back to camp in order to exact his revenge on her for ruining Theo’s life. He wants her to have the same suspicion hanging over her. No one knows his actual reason, and Emma returns to camp to figure out what happened 15 years ago. Chet messes with her throughout camp (birds, painting the door, etc.).

-Emma finds Vivian’s map and therefore her diary (her new cabin mates are with her on that trek). She follows the clues to the library, learning of Peaceful Valley. She eventually (drunkenly) admits to her cabin mates her guilt over that night 15 years ago. She passes out.

-The girls (Miranda) decide to help Emma’s guilty conscious by finding answers for her. By now they’ve read the diary as well, so they set off to where the map took them days before to look for more answers.

-Chet follows them, knocks them out, traps them/they hide in the “hobbit house.”

--Question 4: Was he watching them on the camera? How did he know they had snuck out?

-Emma wakes up and finds them gone. The opening narrative, we now realize, was from present time.

-Chet edits the footage to look like the girls had left 5 minutes before Emma, when really it was over an hour.

All the rest is written in order, so no need to rehash all that. It turns out Peaceful Valley and its demise weren’t completely sinister, Vivian was behind the disappearances 15 years ago, and Chet was behind them in present time – all to frame Emma and cause her the same pain that she caused Theo in the past.

mandymontgom (7)
Q1: I do believe the diary was intended to be found in order for it to seem like they had discovered some sinister piece of information about Peaceful Valley to point to their disappearances to someone else. I think she was trying to frame Franny. Q2: I don't think she intended Emma to see her, but once she realized she had and that Emma thought it was Theo, I think Viv thought she could find a much better motive for Theo than for Franny, once she had discovered the truth about PV. Q3: I also wondered about this. I was wondering if she wanted to get Emma to confirm that she was there the whole time, or if she had something she wanted in the cabin. Maybe the photo of the woman with hairbrush. Maybe she wanted to keep that story hidden so that no one searched for PV since she killed them there. Q4: I think they had gone searching and he was monitoring the camera. She knew to manipulate the camera and he had been the one to suggest the camera. I think it was all his intention and once he saw them sneak out, he felt it was the perfect opportunity.
The Last Time I LiedClmccor (53)
I might be reading too much into this ...

I might be reading a little too much into this, but I love trying to find special quirks about the book.

Their favorite game was 2 truths and a lie. There are 3 italicized sections throughout the book. The first one you think is a 'truth' because you might think it is talking about Vivian. But as you read the 2nd part, you find you have been 'lied' to. "It's not about finding out which one is the lie, it's about making the person tell you the truth. " (not exact quote)

I just thought that was so fun. And it's probably not on purpose and like I said, I'm probably reading wayyyy too much into it.

RebeccaW (3)
I did not catch this, nice find!
maddieonthemap (5)
OMG, I didn't even make that connection! Great observation.
Bethany (5)
I noticed this too! That line also stuck out to me when Emma said it when she first played the game with the new group of girls. If the set up of the book was intentional (which I think it was), it was very clever.
The Last Time I LiedKStephens25 (3)

Literally JUST finished reading. I am obsessed. Anyone else feel like we need a film adaptation?! I loved all the little extra paths that were thrown in to distract the reader, so that the big bad wasn’t discovered until late in the story. I’d really also love to know what happened after Viv took out the others, how she laid low (senator for a Dad, could have made it happen to keep his reputation from taking a hit). Thoughts?

BeverlyPratt (2)
I really enjoyed reading the book. But, if everyone was looking for three missing girls why did someone not see Vivian when she left the camp? She was out there somewhere and Emma was the only one who ever saw her.
maddieonthemap (5)
I think because it had been hours between the girls going missing and people actually looking for them.
KStephens25 (3)
Exactly! I’m wondering how exactly she got away and what she did for 15 years to support herself while remaining undetected. I’m wondering if she ever reached out to her parents. Her father was a senator, I’m wondering if he helped her disappear. Especially after the huge settlement from the Harris-Whites.
2uesday (9)
Amazon Studios picked it up for a limited series I guess, but it also looks like Universal is looking to make it a movie and is in the early stages of development. https://www.amazonbookreview.com/post/ed193e31-f886-4e8e-8cf2-e8c9f6bbd0d9/riley-sager
Amanda (18)
Yes! Definitely a surprise ending but irritating because I wish I knew how Vivian escaped and literally no one else saw her since then...
KStephens25 (3)
Same! I’d love to have had an epilogue or maybe even a sequel based on Vivian’s POV.
The Last Time I Liedkarebear0316 (3)
unresolved... *spoilers*

Where the heck was Lottie?? It seems weird that wasn't explained after drawing so much attention to it. And I still don't really understand how Frannie's husband drowned - but that doesn't bother me as much as the unexplained disappearance of Lottie in Becca's photos. There's definitely some plot holes in this book - but it was overall very enjoyable.

JenniferFoley (1)
Mindy says that Lottie leaves Nightingale each night, goes home, then comes back every morning. I'm assuming Lottie hadn't arrived at camp yet as it was 5AM(?) when Emma woke up and couldn't find the girls.
mdavitt85 (1)
YES i know! I was thinking the exact same thing!
karebear0316 (3)
There's also a typo on page 304 of my book where "breath" is written instead of "breathe." That drives me insane!
Clmccor (53)
I love highlighting mistakes in my books (which is why I love physical copies) - helps me 'move on' from the error ha
garcia2313 (3)
That error drives me crazy too!
MeghanKennedy (5)
Saw the error too! But I personally think that the whole "Missing Lottie" scenario was just a ploy to divert us from the must unpredictable conclusion... Vivian left Camp Nightingale. I don't think we were meant to have as many cliffhangers on other possible threads... but it's annoying that none of them were tied up and we have to accept them for what they are -__-
The Last Time I LiedJess7 (2)
Loved, Loved, LOVED!!

4.5 stars - WOW! I LOVED this book. It was incredibly suspenseful and engaging the entire time.

Emma returns to Camp Nightingale 15 years after her bunk mates went missing. She is determined to find to find out what happened, but soon after she arrives she feels like she is being watched and old memories come flooding back. She must sort out what happened quickly before history repeats itself.

I couldn’t get enough of this book. There were a few times when the girls dialogue from 15 years ago was a bit unrealistic (“i.e., the major ovaries” comment), but otherwise it was great and I liked the ending. There were plenty of seeds planted along the way and twists to keep me guessing! This is a major binge-worthy book. I highly recommend!

The Last Time I LiedPompa (10)
****spoilers about the very end****

Ok so I was really enjoying this book and then the last 5 pages or so really messed with my head. Specifically when it’s mentioned again how Vivian came back and asked Emma to let her in. What do you think would’ve happened if Emma did? It was just so creepy reading that information again now knowing what Vivian did to the other girls.

Kakidee (5)
I got so annoyed by the ending! Like how does a young girl hide two dead girls and then disappears without a trace? I doubt she had money or transportation to get out of the camp alone let alone start a whole life on her own at 16? Ughhh!
MIcaelaMulkey (1)
I think because she started planning this a year in advance she probably like sneaked money from her parents or something that’s what I was thinking
mandymontgom (7)
Also, she is the daughter of a senator. If they knew the truth, don't you think they would have concealed it to save face?
CayMac (1)
I’m honestly wondering about this too! Did she plan on killing Emma too, or was she going to return to her life and pretend she knew nothing? Ugh this book!
garcia2313 (3)
I bet she would've gone back to her life like nothing happened. But Emma would have so many questions so I'm not really sure that would've worked out. I do wonder how she disappeared without a trace though.
The Last Time I LiedMAD222 (2)

Is anyone else wanting to stand on the chest of the author and pull the background story out of her head!!! I get the thriller aspect of it but I just want more information to keep me interested in moving forward.

maddieonthemap (5)
It's actually a male author, just FYI! I kinda hate that it seems like he chose a deliberately unisex name so readers would think he's also a new female thriller writer, as is super popular lately ever since Gillian Flynn.
Morgan (5)
I don't know, I think it is suspenseful to keep me reading further. I don't know how far you are in the book, I'm a little over half way through it and there are still lots of questions to be uncovered. Do you mean you want more answers rather than continuous questions/theories throughout the story?
MAD222 (2)
I want a little more information to keep me guessing and changing my mind about how I think it is going to end. Just me though
Morgan (5)
Okay, I understand :)
The Last Time I LiedMorgan (5)
New BOTM member

Hey! This is my first book from here and it's been so fun reading the exciting thriller! I look forward to reading all the discussion posts. I want to wait until I finish, so not to read any spoilers! So far the book is great! I love how the author goes back and forth from past to present and leaves you in suspense to why Emma believes she is behind the girls disappearance that keeps you yearning to read further!

Clmccor (53)
Welcome to the club!
The Last Time I Liedlaurajfrazier (5)
Spoiler Alert!

I LOVED the book! I have 2 questions...what was the whole thing with the hair from a synthetic wig and remnants of a fake i.d. at the end? Also, why did the lady at the gallery at the end say Vivian died 15 years ago? Wasn't that Vivian??

Calvin (1)
The lady in the art gallery was Vivian, but she said Vivian died 15 years ago because she "disappeared" with the other two girls when she killed them by making a new fake i.d and starting a new life.
laurajfrazier (5)
Thank you!!
Becky (2)
The hair and fake i.d. part at the end was the little clue that Vivian created a new life: new hair (wig) and new identity (fake ID) She said Vivian died because she did. The lady was no longer Vivian she was someone "new"
laurajfrazier (5)
Thank you!!
The Last Time I Liedhaannahbeth (5)

Overall, I loved this book. But there were times when I hated it, and it left some very intriguing unanswered questions. It seemed to almost pander at times to the mystery. The way that Emma took SO long to figure out that what she found in the trunk was a map of the camp after the shape of the lake and the layout of the camp had already been described numerous times, as well as having looked at several satellite images of it. Much of the beginning of the book seemed to repeat itself frequently. There were several paragraphs that said the same thing two to the three times in a row. It was also so painfully obvious that Peaceful Valley was under Lake Midnight, that I didn't realize that Emma hadn't figured that out until she was actually there.
And I'm still left wondering about some things. First, why wasn't Lottie at the lake when the rest of the camp was? Was Vivian in fact stalking Emma at the camp? What exactly did actually happen to Franny's husband? There is still so much mystery!

Bethany (5)
It was mentioned in the book at some point that there were possibilities about why Lottie wasn’t there; for example, she was taking a shower and didn’t hear the commotion. While that is an eye roll of an excuse, and a bit frustrating, I’m sure the author’s intent for her not being there is to keep us wondering until Emma confronts Franny about Peaceful Valley and Lottie appears to explain about her family’s history with it.
Bethany (5)
I also think it's safe to say that Franny's husband died by accidental drowning. The bit of mystery surrounding his death was there to keep us guessing. The book does mention Franny's side of things, can't remember exactly where, but maybe that tid-bit of information is truth. They went for a late night swim and only Franny came back.
Pompa (10)
"It was also so painfully obvious that Peaceful Valley was under Lake Midnight, that I didn't realize that Emma hadn't figured that out until she was actually there." Yes! I read that "reveal" and thought, oh was that not already known? Really? Also, these search and rescue teams are really awful. Supposedly they checked the lake, but no one found this underwater building ever? No one in the woods found this outcrop of rocks with an old shed when looking for the second group of girls? There's a helicopter flying over the campgrounds for what, 2 days? No one thought hey here's a building away from the camp, let's take a closer look?
Bethany (5)
I think Emma knew Lake Midnight was the site for Peaceful Valley, I don't think it was meant as a big reveal in the sense that it was a big surprise. It was mentioned that it was thought that "old Buchanan Harris razed it when he bought the land." However, I think her surprise in seeing it was the fact that the building was still there, instead of being torn down before the lake was created. I do think the people searching the camp did a piss-poor job. I mean, never searching the other side of the lake and searching the camp grounds only. That seemed weird to me. Granted, it was less than 24 hours that the girls were missing.
ChristineDuane (58)
So many things in this book, where there was a big lead up....and then nothing. The explanation Frannie gave at the end was so rushed. We went through the whole book thinking she was involved somehow and then she says she didnt do anything and its over? Also didnt understand the Lottie thing. That being said I was surprised by the ending even though when I think back, it makes total sense.
Becky (2)
I don't think Vivian was stalking Emma at camp. I think everything was Chet. But yes I still wonder along with you why Lottie was absent from the lake and what happened to Franny's husband.
The Last Time I LiedChristina (2)
An Exciting Thriller

This book definitely captures that creepy summertime Stranger Things vibe. At first I wasn’t a big fan of the Mean Girls feel but the mystery is so intriguing I found it hard to put down. For all of the excitement it did feel like there was a lot of building up to nothing. The ending was unexpected (and awesome!) but I would have rather had more of that than the drawn out whodunnit at Camp Nightingale. I really enjoyed the cinematic element of the writing. Overall, it was a fun summer read!

haannahbeth (5)
I agree. There was a lot of boring build up to an exciting, interesting, and truncated end.
The Last Time I Liedrajo (28)
Has anyone else...

Has anyone else been having the problem of their books arriving with the corners crushed, sometimes even with the covers torn? My books have arrived beat up every month for at least the last 4 months. This used to never happen. It's always so disappointing when they look bad before I even open the shrink wrap. Do I just have terrible luck? :(

maddieonthemap (5)
My box for August came SO delayed, and completely beat up with corners crushed in. The books themselves were ok, although I noticed on this book the words were printed on the page a little slanted. Meh.
JacquelineCarroll (2)
Could that be a problem with your local post office? I've never had that happen but once I had a book arrived with the last sheet glued-in kind of crooked. I called them and they replaced the book right away. In fact, I wish the person who replaced that book mailed all the books because it arrived in a couple of days vs two weeks for a regular shipment.
2uesday (9)
I've been receiving BOTM for awhile now and not once have I had a problem with the condition of the books.
Hana (22)
I didn't have that problem, but there was one page that stuck out, as if it wasn't put in properly. Not a huge issue, but it didn't look great.
SerinaMolina (2)
Was it page 183? Mine isn’t proper and it’s driving me nuts ????????
CarolineTurner (2)
What a bummer! I've been getting BOTM for a little over a year now and the one time my book arrived with an issue (a leaf was unglued from the binding) I reached out to customer service and they replaced it right away. Haven't had the torn cover/smashed sides issue though. Hope this helps!
Springleshae (1)
This is my second box, the first one was fine, but both books in this box were kind of smashed and wrinkled in the corners.
ewhip (1)
I've been getting BotM for about a year and I've never had this issue. Maybe contact them about it?
Bethany (5)
This will be my first BOTM box and, while very excited to receive it, a bit apprehensive if these are the conditions the books will arrive in.
landerson1291 (1)
I haven't had issues with the cover being ripped, but on page 294 of The Last Time I Lied, there's a pretty big ink splotch that takes up an inch of the page and covers the words :( It's kinda a bummer because I love the book and have been singing the praises of BOTM. Is this something that others are seeing for this specific book?
damroberts744 (12)
You're right, it wasn't an issue save the last couple of months, but I received Circe bent pretty badly at the top (not enough to buy a new copy, even though the cover is great), and also received Calypso with a torn dust jacket. Still love the site, but definitely a bit disappointing.
MAdoor (7)
Yes, Yes, Yes!!!!! I thought that "my beat up" box and book was due to ordering the tote bag. It looks like someone looked at my BOTM box and wonder what's in there. Then they did a very poor job of rewrapping it. Now that I know it's going on elsewhere I may have to resign. The books are too expensive to have these problems.
Christina (2)
This is my first time ordering from BOTM and the jacket for The Last Time I Lied is ripped at the top :(. I feel so disappointed! I would never have purchased a book in that condition. The second book I ordered seemed to be in better shape although it didn’t exactly look clean. I hope it will be better next month.