Dark and Shallow Lies by Ginny Myers Sain

Author: Ginny Myers Sain

Publisher: Razorbill

Pages: 432

Source: Penguin Teen Canada

Released: September 7th, 2021

Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Indigo Canada | Book Depository

Rating: 3.5/5

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“A teen girl disappears from her small town deep in the bayou, where magic festers beneath the surface of the swamp like water rot, in this chilling debut supernatural thriller for fans of Natasha Preston, Karen McManus, and Rory Power.

La Cachette, Louisiana, is the worst place to be if you have something to hide.

This tiny town, where seventeen-year-old Grey spends her summers, is the self-proclaimed Psychic Capital of the World–and the place where Elora Pellerin, Grey’s best friend, disappeared six months earlier.

Grey can’t believe that Elora vanished into thin air any more than she can believe that nobody in a town full of psychics knows what happened. But as she digs into the night that Elora went missing, she begins to realize that everybody in town is hiding something – her grandmother Honey; her childhood crush Hart; and even her late mother, whose secrets continue to call to Grey from beyond the grave.

When a mysterious stranger emerges from the bayou – a stormy-eyed boy with links to Elora and the town’s bloody history – Grey realizes that La Cachette’s past is far more present and dangerous than she’d ever understood. Suddenly, she doesn’t know who she can trust. In a town where secrets lurk just below the surface, and where a murderer is on the loose, nobody can be presumed innocent–and La Cachette’s dark and shallow lies may just rip the town apart.” –Goodreads

Sain’s writing immediately draws you into her world and keeps you hooked until the very end. My favourite aspect of Dark and Shallow Lies is the mystery. The question of what and who had done it kept me on the edge of my seat. I kept reading chapter after chapter because I wanted answers to the mystery.

I loved how this book swam across different genres. There were elements of paranormal fantasy, mystery, and thriller. While, at the same time, it read as contemporary. I felt like I was reading contemporary, but what I was reading about was related to fantasy. It was cool!

The inclusion of different types of psychics was a neat addition to the storyline.

I thought Grey was a well-developed and fleshed-out character. Furthermore, I also enjoyed seeing Zale in this book. I thought the side characters (mainly the Summer Children) could have been fleshed out more in this novel. We hear Grey tell tons of past stories about the other characters, but we don’t get a lot of interaction time with them and Grey.

This book, I felt, needed flashback chapters. Since the book starts a while after the mystery has begun…we, as readers, are thrown into this world. I felt flashbacks could have helped me connect to some characters. This point is especially true for Hart. Grey tells us what Hart is like before the events of the mystery. Since I couldn’t see how Hart was before the mystery began, I couldn’t fully connect with him as a character.

Overall, I enjoyed the ride that Dark and Shallow Lies took me on. The mystery kept me glued to the edge of my seat. I couldn’t stop reading because I needed answers. I loved the blend of genres and the inclusion of psychics in this story. My only critique is that I wished the Summer Children had gotten more page time. If you’re looking for a story that will have you hooked from start to finish, then I recommend Dark and Shallow Lies.

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