Move over, Friday the 13th, there’s a new king of summer camp mysteries. Riley Sager’s The Last Time I Lied takes a successful stab at the well-known trope of deaths and disappearances amongst the backdrop of cabins and bug juice. In the novel, Emma returns to the re-opened Camp Nightengale, this time as a full-grown art teacher. She can’t help but paint the same thing over and over again–images of the girls that disappeared from the camp years ago, back when Emma herself was a camper. Emma’s return brings back dark memories and clues to a still unsolved mystery. Yet happenings at the camp start to eerily mirror that year from her childhood. When an unexpected event strikes, Emma is tasked with preventing yet another tragedy.
This mystery pulled me in quickly, and I couldn’t let go. It was definitely one of the best mystery novels I have read in a long time. Though it takes on an at-times cliche plot line, it updates in a fresh, entirely enthralling way. I was very impressed with this novel, and the reveal at the end was chilling and unexpected. The characters were detailed and complex, and the mystery complex as well.
Rating: 5/5 stars