Trust Me, I'm Lying
Written by Mary Elizabeth Summer
Published January 2nd 2015
Thank you to Random House Austalia
Julep Dupree tells lies. A lot of them. She’s a con artist, a master of disguise, and a sophomore at Chicago’s swanky St. Agatha High, where her father, an old school grifter with a weakness for the ponies, sends her to so she can learn to mingle with the upper crust. For extra spending money Julep doesn’t rely on her dad, she runs petty scams for her classmates while dodging the dean of students and maintaining an A plus, okay, A minus average.But when she comes home one day to a ransacked apartment and her father gone, Julep’s carefully laid plans for an expenses paid golden ticket to Yale start to unravel. Even with help from St. Agatha’s resident Prince Charming, Tyler Richland, and her loyal hacker sidekick, Sam, Julep struggles to trace her dad’s trail of clues through a maze of creepy stalkers, hit attempts, family secrets, and worse, the threat of foster care. With everything she has at stake, Julep’s in way over her head... But that’s not going to stop her from using every trick in the book to find her dad before his mark finds her. Because that would be criminal.
Julep is the master manipulator at the private and illustrious Saint Agatha's, taking full advantage of being the daughter of a con man and a Grifter herself. She sells dreams to anyone who can afford her services, while her father pays her tuition to ensure she gains the wealthy connections to follow in his footsteps. But when Julep arrives home from school to find their small apartment ransacked, her father missing and the only clue to his whereabouts is a cryptic note and a handgun, Julep realises she may need to call in reinforcements.
Wealthy young technology expert Sam is Julep's best friend and partner in crime... Until the popular and charismatic Tyler takes an interest. Tyler is adamant he wants to be her friend, his wealthy and lonely life demanding more than vapid friends and his father's senate election. As Julep follows her father's clues, she's being followed. threatened and needs to find a way to pay for her own tuition or risk being expelled and finding herself in foster care. As the clues lead her closer to her father's insurance policy should he disappear, it will be more than Julep's life in danger. She isn't the only one prone to telling lies, and this deception may just lead to her begging for her own life while others sacrifice theirs.
Trust Me, I'm lying was fun, adventurous, but with a thrillingly sinister storyline that I couldn't put down. Reminiscent of Veronica Mars, it follows the story of Julep, a sassy voice in a sea of the wealthy and elite. She makes dreams a reality for a fee, with intricate schemes ranging from setting up dates for the desperate, to criminal activity. Her single father teaching her all he knows, until she comes home from school and finds her place ransacked and her father missing. Suddenly her extracurricular activities pale in comparison. Apart from best friend Sam, Julep has connections but no other friends, not allowing herself to take comfort in anyone else, until she meets Tyler.
Tyler is wealthy, popular and after seeing a dead rat being placed in Julep's school locker, feels he needs to involve himself in her protection. Julep is wary of his sudden interest, and with good reason. Sam doesn't trust him and their once close friendship becomes strained with the introduction of Tyler as a possible love interest. Their dangerous adventure was enthralling, a mystery that unravels as the reader turns each page. I loved Julep's character and although she eludes a tough exterior, I felt incredibly sorry for her. She doesn't want to follow in her father's footsteps, even though he is pushing her into a life of crime and one day dreams of attending Yale.
The appeal of Trust Me, I'm lying comes from being so far fetched, that it borders on being a fun thriller and not to be taken seriously. It's entertaining, and will appeal to fans of young adult mystery. Looking forward to continuing on with the series.