Lies We Tell Ourselves Spoiler Free Review

Title: Lies We Tell Ourselves

Author: Robin Talley

Publisher: MIRA Ink

Release Date: October 3rd 2014

Number of Pages: 368

Genre: YA, Historical Fiction


It’s 1959. The battle for civil rights is raging. And it’s Sarah Dunbar’s first day of school, as one of the first black students at the previously all-white Jefferson High. No one wants Sarah there. Not the Governor. Not the teachers. And certainly not the students – especially Linda Hairston, daughter of the town’s most ardent segregationist. Sarah and Linda have every reason to despise each other. But as a school project forces them to spend time together, the less their differences seem to matter. And Sarah and Linda start to feel something they’ve never felt before. Something they’re both determined ignore. Because it’s one thing to be frightened by the world around you – and another thing altogether when you’re terrified of what you feel inside.

Trigger warning for racism and violence.

Last year I read Our Own Private Universe by Robin Talley and while I didn’t love it I still enjoyed it so when I saw this one in my local library I thought I’d give it ago and I’m so glad that I did as this book is amazing.

This book is set in 1959 during the fight for civil rights and integration. It follows two points of view. The first is Sarah a black girl who is one of the 10 first black students to go a previously all white school. The second is Linda who is the daughter of one of the towns most outspoken segregationists and who does not believe that Sarah and her fellow classmates do not belong in her school. When Sarah and Linda are paired together on a school assessment and as they start to get to know each other they start to release that maybe they aren’t so different form each other after all but when feelings start to develop between them they become even more determined to ignore each other.

I really loved both the main characters, how they are both strong in their own way and seeing how they cope with the struggles they are up against everyday. I absolutely adore the romance between these two as it’s so well don and believable.

The writing in this is also amazing and I loved how fast paced this book is as I just seemed to fly through it.

I found it really interesting learning more about the civil rights movement in America through this book and gaining a better understanding of what it was like for people especially people of colour in America during this time. It was also interesting to gain a better insight into what it was like for those in the LGBT+ community during the 1950s.

Overall this was a great read and I gave it 4 out of 5 stars.

Have you read The Lies we Tell Ourselves? What did you think of it?

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