Hawthorne Creely doesn’t fit in. She doesn’t have many friends and her classmates make fun of her. She just wants to leave her small town. Then one day Lizzie Lovett disappears. Lizzie who was perfect and had everything. Hawthorne doesn’t understand how someone with a perfect life like Lizzie would just give it all up. She is certain there must be more the Lizzie disappearance and sets out to solve the mystery of this beloved girl’s disappearance.
Debut author Chelsea Sedoti has a distinct narrative voice in Hawthorne Creely. Hawthorne expresses every thought and reaction with a sardonic sarcasm. The narrative is consistent and unwavering. This is quite a feat unless you really dislike that distinct narrative voice. I found Hawthorne to be annoying and completely unlikable. There is always a certain amount of self centeredness when reading a first person narrative but Hawthorne was unable to see past herself or knowledge how her behaviors may impact other people. She views Lizzie’s disappearance as an entertaining mystery instead of a possible tragedy. However, that was not my only issue with this book which claims to feature a “hundred lies of Lizzie Lovett”. We found out that Lizzie may have not been the happy, shiny girl she presented to the world but that is about as far as her lies go. There is no underlying chain of falsities that explain what happened to Lizzie. She disappeared then her mystery has a resolution and that is about it.
“The Hundred Lies of Lizzie Lovett” is being billed as a mystery/coming of age story but it doesn’t accomplish either. The mystery has a lot of build up but just ends up and falling flat. Hawthorne never grows up; she doesn’t learn a lesson and she is the basically the same character at the beginning as she is at the end. I’m sure there are some people who really like this kind of book but I’m just not one of them.
Final Rating: 2.5 out of 5