Lie by Caroline Bock
Published by St. Martin’s
Publish Date: August 30, 2011
Source: Finished Copy from publisher
Everybody knows, nobody’s talking. . . .
Seventeen-year-old Skylar Thompson is being questioned by the police. Her boyfriend, Jimmy, stands accused of brutally assaulting two young El Salvadoran immigrants from a neighboring town, and she’s the prime witness. Skylar is keeping quiet about what she’s seen, but how long can she keep it up?
But Jimmy was her savior . . . .
When her mother died, he was the only person who made her feel safe, protected from the world. But when she begins to appreciate the enormity of what has happened, especially when Carlos Cortez, one of the victims, steps up to demand justice, she starts to have second thoughts about protecting Jimmy. Jimmy’s accomplice, Sean, is facing his own moral quandary. He’s out on bail and has been offered a plea in exchange for testifying against Jimmy.
The truth must be told. . . .
Sean must decide whether or not to turn on his friend in order to save himself. But most important, both he and Skylar need to figure out why they would follow someone like Jimmy in the first place. –(summary from Goodreads)
My Thoughts: Lie is one of those stories that was really intense yet also gripping, which kept me from being able to put it down. It was short, which was a good thing, because it kind of had me in knots while I was reading. It is the story of a crime, an awful hate crime, how everyone involved was affected, and what they chose to do about it, if anything.
1. The Story. Jimmy Seeger and his friends go “beaner-hopping” every Saturday night. At first, this started out as something they just did for fun. No one was supposed to be hurt. But on this particular Saturday night, things got out of control. And this time, Skylar and Lisa Marie were there to witness it.
Jimmy and Sean were the only two guys riding this week. They pulled up alongside two men walking on the road, Arturo and Carlos Cortez, and viciously beat them. There was a weapon involved, and Arturo was seriously injured. As in, intensive care, seriously. Carlos suffered minor injuries and was treated and released.
Jimmy and Sean were arrested, of course. In talking with Skylar and Lisa Marie, they all decided that no one would say anything. They would lie. “Everybody’s knows, nobody’s talking” became their mantra. Even when Skylar and Sean started to break down and feel the guilt, Jimmy and Lisa Marie kept reminding them of their deal – lie. Lie! Lie. Not guilty, right? Right?
2. The Characters. The story is told from a lot of perspectives. This sounds daunting and exhausting but I think it works out okay in this case. It gives a very well-rounded point-of-view of everyone, or at least nearly everyone, touched by this crime. These are the four main players:
- Jimmy Seeger. Jimmy is a charismatic, smart, 18 year old high school honor student. A natural born leader, everyone says. Other students want to be just like him. He excels in football and baseball. Jimmy has a huge chip on his shoulder about immigrants coming into America and taking what is “ours” – our land, our jobs, etc. Jimmy speaks these ideas to anyone that will listen, and his charisma is such that people around him start to speak that way too and even believe that way in some instances. Jimmy dates Skylar Thompson.
- Sean Mayer. Jimmy’s best friend. Sean is a follower and wants to be just like Jimmy. Only 17, he is a baseball teammate of Jimmy’s. Son of one of the local members of the Board of Education, Sean has had an easier life than Jimmy, but he is still impressionable. He lives next door to Skylar.
- Skylar Thompson. Jimmy’s girlfriend. Skylar is a smart girl, but she’s mostly identified as Jimmy’s girlfriend after fading away into almost nothing after the death of her mother months ago. Her father buries himself in his work, in his grief, and Skylar buries herself in Jimmy. Skylar used to be a great student, smart, pretty – but now she only thinks of Jimmy constantly because to her, he saved her life.
- Lisa Marie Murano. Skylar’s best friend and neighbor. Lisa Marie lives across the street, I think, and has been friends with Skylar and Sean for years as they’ve always lived near each other. Lisa Marie is very concerned with her social status and less with more important issues, although she has a special place in her heart for Skylar since her mother died. Lisa Marie has an odd crush on Jimmy and this becomes obvious as the story unfolds, although it is never really outright mentioned.
that is so obviously simple to me, the reader. Tell the truth.
Lie is not one of those books that I hugged when I was finished. But I will say that it is really excellent and I love how it was written. It broke my heart. It fueled my righteous anger. It made me sad, so very sad. It is one that should be read and for that reason, I’m going to pass it onto one of you guys so I can guarantee that somebody will read it.
Issue Books: Hate Crimes
Lie by Caroline Bock
is currently available for purchase.
Read books like this every now and then.
Be aware of what some people are going through.
I’m giving away my PAPERBACK copy of LIE.
Please read it and talk about it, maybe share it with someone else.
This book is fiction, based on stuff that happened RIGHT HERE
in America and it is NOT OKAY.