Tale of Two Lives

Lies You Never Told Me - Jennifer Donaldson

Elyse and Gabe have never met but are tied by destiny. They tell the story of their lives in parallel narratives, sharing their secrets little by little. Elyse is entering a forbidden relationship and may be repeating her mother's footsteps. Gabe finally realizes that the relationship he is in may be more dangerous than he thought.  Each will have to decide if the path they are on is the right one or beginning a new one is work their lives.

 

Pro:

 

  • Gabe and Elyse are enduring characters and it was a pleasurable experience to get to know them. I did like hat Gabe was not the Hispanic kid from the wrong side of the tracks who is dating the popular girl. Yet, he comes from a wealthy and educated family who loves him, with a sister who has a developmental disability adds to the dimensions of his story.. This is a character that does not get told as a protagonist much in contemporary literature. Elyse as well does not come from a  typical family background. Her mother is an addict and must be an adult faster than she should. It was interesting to see how stories unfold.
  • The tempo of the story is a steady unfolding. At the start, it is a little hard to move along with because of the missing connection between both characters. I was constantly guessing who the had done what and how the stories were connected.

 

Con:

 

  • The character development is a little shallow throughout the whole book. I had wanted a little more depth into the characters, the story would have been more well rounded. Elyse and the strained relationship with her mother’s addiction could have been explained more. As well as Gabe's family life and heritage compared to his girlfriends. The plot twist was interesting at the end but it took away from what the book could have expanded on and explored. Throughout the whole time, I just had a why these two question and it frustrated me a bit that it took so long to connect. More could have been done to make the plot twist not so predictable or give another twist that could have enhanced the plot.