Wednesday, January 19, 2011


By Todd Mitchell
328 Pages
From Back Cover:
James was the guy no one noticed-a fifteen year old living in a small town with his repairman father and ex-beauty queen mother. So when he gets into the American Science and Mathematics Academy(or ASMA), a public boarding school, James decides that it's time to leave the past behind. In a student body made up of nerds and geeks, being cool is easy. All it takes is a few harmless lies to invent the new James: rebel, punk, street fighter. Everybodys impressed, except for the beautiful Ellie Frost, whose icy demeanor holds an inexplicable attraction for James and the mysterious Ghost44, an IM presence who sees right through his new identity. But James is riding high-playing pranks and hooking up with the luscious Jessica Keen. Things seem perfect until he begins to having strange and vivid dreams that pull him into a dark city haunted by demons. As the line between dreams and reality blurs, James begins to wonder, what's the price for being the coolest guy around?
My Thoughts:
This is the second book this month that I have read about teenagers reinventing themselves. I think that's a fantasy all dream of doing at one time or another. I know I did. Especially during those teenage years when most are trying to figure out who they are and who they want to be.
James gets a second shot to reinvent himself when he is transfered to a new school with a new set of peers. James makes up a brand new past and dives in to his new life determined to be someone different than he has always been. His stories build him a badass reputation and suddenly he's known as the quiet, tough, rebel boy with an ugly past. His plan works-but at what cost? Eventually lies catch up with you and James is running out of time.
The story is reality with a bit of fantasy thrown in as Jame's dreams start to bleed into his real life. There are several mature themes throughout the story that include violence, drinking, anorexia and cutting. Author Todd Mitchell tackles the issues head on. There are moments of humor sprinkled in that add a lighter mood. The pranks that James and his new friends pull on other students are laugh at loud funny.
The story is from main character, James, point of view. A teenage males perspective is refreshing and welcome. It's easy to forget sometimes that boys struggle with the same thing girls do-most times they just aren't as vocal.
The Secret to Lying is a great story that both boys and girls would enjoy reading. If you would like to learn more about author Todd Mitchell go to his web site by following this link-Todd Mitchell's website. The trailer he made for his book is hilarious.
A big thank you to Candlewick Press for sending me an ARC of The Secret to Lying by Todd Mitchell to read and review! I will be offering this ARC as a giveaway prize in February.

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