By: Chelsea SedotiThe Hundred Lies of Lizzie Lovett is a coming of age story with a unique voice. In a sleepy American town where nothing of interest ever happens, a young woman goes missing during a camping trip with her boyfriend. Hawthorne, a high school student who once knew the missing person, Lizzie Lovett, integrates herself into Lizzie’s life in order to supposedly solve the mystery and provide herself with some much needed relief from her humdrum life.
Hawthorne is a self-proclaimed, misunderstood outcast with very few friends. Self-absorbed to the core, Hawthorne treats the disappearance of the once “It girl” of her high school as an opportunity to create a fantasy for herself. Hawthorne becomes obsessed with Lizzie’s life. She takes Lizzie’s job, befriends her boyfriend, and creates an outrageous theory on what actually happened to Lizzie which she forces on anyone who will listen, despite how emotionally upsetting it might be.
As she gets closer to Enzo, Lizzie’s 25 year old boyfriend, the characters really come to life. Enzo is emotionally devastated by Lizzie’s disappearance and grasping at any distraction to steer his thoughts away from the tragedy. Meanwhile, Hawthorne becomes more and more obsessed with having everything Lizzie had and knowing everything and anything about the missing girl’s life. Emily, Hawthorne’s best friend, recognizes how unhealthy Hawthorne’s behaviour has become and tries to help her but to no avail. Hawthorne is oblivious to the emotions of everyone around her; their turmoil, suffering, and being exist only as they affect her. Themes like bullying, mental health, relationships, sex, and obsession are the backbone of this book.
Reading through Hawthorne’s unique voice makes you want to shake the her! What truly makes this novel enticing are the characters. Chelsea Sedoti managed to create well rounded, unique, and believable characters that keep you reading to the end! That said, this book was very enticing, infuriating, but enticing. I was compelled to read to the end and find out what happened to Lizzie Lovett despite (or perhaps) because of Hawthorne’s approach to her disappearance. I couldn’t stop thinking about this book whenever I wasn’t reading it. It made me mad, excited, confused, and everything in between. When I made it to the very last page, I let go of a breath I didn’t realize I had been holding the entire novel.
Warning: For older teens due to sexual content.
Similar reads: Bone Gap, The Leaving, Tragic Kind of Wonderful, The Thousandth Floor, Last Seen Leaving.