Reviews for The lies we tell

Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

An intrepid college freshman pushes past her comfort zone to investigate an unsolved murder. Brookings University freshman Anna Xu, back home in Michigan after a whirlwind summer in Beijing with relatives, is on a mission. She hopes to discover who killed Melissa Hong, her childhood babysitter, who was a sophomore at Brookings 7 years ago. Her stealth investigation isn’t easy to carry out when she’s also making new friends, navigating the college social scene, and fielding sinister threats resulting from her sleuthing. Not to mention worrying about Sweetea, her immigrant parents’ struggling Chinese bakery, now that old family rivals the Lus have opened a bakery of their own nearby. Not only that, their son, Chris Lu, is a fellow student, and Anna isn’t sure how she feels about him: Is he a competitor, a friend, or perhaps something more? With the help of Chris and others, Anna edges closer to learning what happened to Melissa. But will she discover the truth in time to prevent more tragedies? Anna is realistically drawn—at times socially uncertain but relentless in her search for answers about Melissa’s murder. In addition to the fast-paced, well-crafted main plot, subthemes abound and are all given full play: anime geek culture, White male domination of the Asian studies field, anti-Asian hate, and the sexual fetishization of Asian women. A complex and layered campus mystery that explores pernicious stereotypes. (Mystery. 14-18) Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.