ARC Review: Lying Out Loud by Kody Keplinger


Lying Out Loud
Series: Companion to The DUFF
Author: Kody Keplinger
Published July 2nd 2015 by Hodder Children's Books

Goodreads Synopsis
Kody Keplinger returns to the world of The DUFF in this brand-new companion novel!
Sonny Ardmore is an excellent liar. She lies about her dad being in prison. She lies about her mom kicking her out. And she lies about sneaking into her best friend's house every night because she has nowhere else to go.
Amy Rush might be the only person Sonny shares everything with— secrets, clothes, even a nemesis named Ryder Cross.
Ryder's the new kid at Hamilton High and everything Sonny and Amy can't stand—a prep-school snob. But Ryder has a weakness: Amy. So when Ryder emails Amy asking her out, the friends see it as a prank opportunity not to be missed.
But without meaning to, Sonny ends up talking to Ryder all night online. And to her horror, she realizes that she might actually like him. Only there's one small catch: he thinks he's been talking to Amy. So Sonny comes up with an elaborate scheme to help Ryder realize that she's the girl he's really wanted all along. Can Sonny lie her way to the truth, or will all her lies end up costing her both Ryder and Amy?

I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher via NetGalley. This in no way impacted on my view.

Lying Out Loud was a really quick and easy read - perfect for a holiday read. Though I can't remember much of The DUFF, other than what was in the movie that I recently saw, I really enjoyed seeing Wesley and Bianca again.

Our main character, Sonny, is a natural liar. Pretty much everything she says has some form of lie in it, and this causes major problems. Her best friend, Amy, is Wesley's younger sister, who we met in The DUFF. They've been besties since forever, and Sonny is now living at the Rushes due to problems at home - problems which aren't fully discovered until towards the end of the book.

The main plot of the book is as follows. A new guy, Ryder, comes to Hamilton High. He's snobby, and quite frankly, unlikable. He's got the biggest crush on Amy, and hates Sonny. To try and get him off Amy's back, Sonny writes him a really awful email, on Amy's behalf, that is accidentally sent. After that, Ryder IMs Sonny and they start talking - all this, unfortunately, on Amy's account. They keep talking, and Sonny realises she's falling for Ryder, but he thinks it's Amy he's telling all his secrets. All in all, everything falls apart, and it takes quite some time to fix. 

I really, really liked Sonny. Between her and Bianca, there was no choice - she was the better protagonist. Yeah, she may have been a compulsive liar, but she did feel guilty about it, she made mistakes, and was simply a normal teenager. Her crush on Ryder, a guy she had previously hated, seemed real, and though it was angsty, I loved it all the same. Amy and Ryder was also great characters, and they both brought out the best and worst in Sonny. The relationship between besties Amy and Sonny was never shown as perfect - they fought, argued, and shut each other out like real friends do from time to time. They honestly seemed like true friends, true sisters, and I couldn't have asked for a better pair. 

Though I said I preferred Sonny to Bianca, to see both Bianca and Wesley again, and not just as a passing glance, was sweet. They are shown in an amazing, loving relationship, though still the same people they were in The DUFF. They definitely helped Amy and Sonny overcome their relationship issues, and Wesley was like a brother to Sonny, just as much as he was to Amy.

Like with most YA books around right now, parents are either perfect, or downright basket cases. Both of these were present in Lying Out Loud. Amy's parents, the Rushes, were kind, and helpful to the girls, even though they'd been flaky in The DUFF. However, on other end of the spectrum, Sonny's parents, and her mother in particular, were the worst. I can't go into much detail, but I honestly wanted to slap her mam at times. Sonny now having a place in the Rush family was the best thing that happened in the book, and I'm so glad she was finally happy. 

All in all, I'm so glad I've read this book. Sonny was a wonderful protagonist, and to return to Hamilton High was really enjoyable. I definitely think I'm going to re-read The DUFF to find out what I've forgot, and because I've missed Bianca and Wesley. Fans of The DUFF would enjoy this book!

Dates Read:
June 23 to 24, 2015

4 Stars

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