Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart
Publisher: Hot Keys Books
Publishing Date: 5th September 2017
Source: Received from publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review, thank you!
Number of pages: 272
Genre: Mystery & Thrillers, Teens & YA
From the author of the unforgettable bestseller WE WERE LIARS comes a suspenseful new psychological thriller – the story of a young woman whose diabolical smarts are her ticket into a charmed life.
But how many times can someone reinvent themselves? You be the judge.
Imogen is a runaway heiress, an orphan, a cook, and a cheat.
Jule is a fighter, a social chameleon, and an athlete.
An intense friendship. A disappearance. A murder, or maybe two.
A bad romance, or maybe three.
Blunt objects, disguises, blood, and chocolate. The American dream, superheroes, spies, and villains.
A girl who refuses to give people what they want from her.
A girl who refuses to be the person she once was.
Honestly, I was very intrigued after reading synopsis of “Genuine Fraud”. I went into it with an open mind, not sure what I can expect from the author that is new to me, and from the book itself that already got so many mixed reviews. After reading the novel though I think I know why the reviews are so diversified.
The story is written backwards, if I can say so, and I can already tell you here is where my biggest problem was. It felt really weird reading about things, events and situations and understanding them not until a few chapters later. I also often found myself not remembering to what situations that I’ve already read about did the events lead. It was really weird, demanding and made the reading more difficult for me personally. It was confusing and to be totally honest, not clear, some things and characters were appearing out of the blue and after finishing it I found myself sitting and thinking, and what now?
The storyline follows two characters and one is pretending to be the other one. They were not likeable, those characters, however I think that’s the way it was supposed to be. They were reckless. They were unreliable and they were probably in a need of a therapy. I didn’t feel connect to any of the characters and actually mostly I just felt reluctance towards them. I didn’t understand them and their motives probably, and I still am not sure if this what happened with Jule’s parents was truth or was it another lie.
The writing style was great but on the other hand it felt so cold and emotionless as if the author didn’t mind if she connects with the readers or not. It lacked in suspense in tension. There was not a mystery to discover. There weren’t any twists. So what was this book for? I was truly intrigued by the beginning, the first two, three chapters. Then the going back in time began, and every chapter skips back a week, few weeks or even a month before. I have nothing against flashbacks or retrospections but it was just too much for me and this timeline has just kept messing me up.
So the book left me totally in two minds and I still am not sure what to think. I will definitely read another E. Lockhart’s book, especially as I’m hearing so many good things about “We Were Liars”, but “Genuine Fraud” stays for me a short, fast – paced story with an average plot, not likeable, unbelievable and underdeveloped characters. However, if you’re looking for a read with a difference, that is fresh and unique and even intriguing, that you might give “Genuine Fraud” a shot.