If I Lie

( 22 )

Overview

“Relationships and their dynamics play themselves out naturally and with satisfying complexity” (Kirkus Reviews) in this dramatic and powerful novel that explores the gray space between truth and perception.

Cheater. Traitor. Slut.

Quinn’s done the unthinkable: she kissed a guy who is not Carey, her boyfriend. And she got caught. Shunned by everyone she knows, Quinn loses her friends, her reputation, and her ...

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If I Lie

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Overview

“Relationships and their dynamics play themselves out naturally and with satisfying complexity” (Kirkus Reviews) in this dramatic and powerful novel that explores the gray space between truth and perception.

Cheater. Traitor. Slut.

Quinn’s done the unthinkable: she kissed a guy who is not Carey, her boyfriend. And she got caught. Shunned by everyone she knows, Quinn loses her friends, her reputation, and her identity. Because Carey’s not just any guy—he’s a Marine who’s serving overseas, and beloved by everyone in their small, military town.

But Quinn didn’t cheat. She could clear her name, but that would mean revealing secrets she’s vowed to keep—secrets that aren’t hers to share. So she stays silent, and she waits for Carey to come home.

Then Carey goes MIA, and Quinn must decide how far she’ll go to protect her boyfriend…and her promise.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Just before high school senior Quinn’s boyfriend deploys to Afghanistan with the Marines, a picture surfaces on Facebook that shows her kissing a boy—and it isn’t Carey. Soon after, Carey goes missing in action, causing Quinn’s classmates, and many adults in her military town, to treat her like “the slut that cheated on our hero.” But Quinn is committed to keeping a secret about Carey and what led to that photographed kiss. Military culture permeates Jackson’s debut; in addition to themes of honor and sacrifice, Quinn’s father is a Marine, and her mother left the family years ago, unable to cope with “how the war changed him.” Additionally, Quinn bonds with George, an elderly veteran who gets her involved in recording other vets’ stories. Jackson throws a lot at readers: beyond Carey’s secret, Quinn faces her mother’s return, George’s decline, and her feelings for the boy she was photographed kissing. Quinn’s relationship with George is well-drawn, but other characters and plot lines lack this fullness. Readers may find the focus on military communities and culture the most engaging aspect of Quinn’s story. Ages 14–up. Agent: Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary Agency. (Aug.)
VOYA - Vikki Terrile
Quinn has done the unforgivable. Caught cheating on her boyfriend, a hometown hero now MIA in Afghanistan, she is hated by everyone in her small military town. While Quinn knows the truth that would clear her name, it is rooted in secrets that are not hers to tell, secrets she may have to live with for the rest of her life. Jackson's debut novel is a strikingly poignant portrayal of a young woman's struggle to be right in the face of persecution from, not only her peers, but her entire community. While the novel is told in Quinn's first-person narrative, the author has gifted Quinn with the capacity to recognize the pain underlying others' actions, even those who are slinging the most hate her way. Addressing bullying, homophobia, family dysfunction, grief, and the awesome cost of war, the novel is mostly about honor and what it means. Strong, achingly human characterizations help make the novel as emotionally sound as it is; Quinn's work with the Veteran's History Project at the local VA hospital is especially moving. In a few places, Quinn's flashbacks do not transition smoothly and it takes a few sentences to realize she is looking back, but otherwise the storytelling is gripping. Much more than a unique spin on being the high school outcast, this is also a thought-provoking glimpse into a community built around service to our country and the many faces of honor. Reviewer: Vikki Terrile
Kirkus Reviews
Six years after Sophie's mother cheats on her father, a Marine, Sophie does the very same thing and becomes a pariah. Sweethaven, N.C., is just west of Camp Lejeune, and it is a Marine Corps town through and through. An injury to one is an injury to all, so when a half-naked Sophie is photographed wrapped around a boy who is not her boyfriend just days before he is deployed to Afghanistan, she becomes "slut" to everyone, including her father. As Sophie reflects of her boyfriend, "He might as well have a PROPERTY OF SWEETHAVEN label stamped on his ass." Her only solace is the time she spends at the VA hospital with George, a crusty soldier-turned–war photographer whom she is helping with an oral-history project. What she won't—can't—say is that not only was she not cheating on Carey, she is suffering all this to protect him. Sophie's blunt, perceptive present-tense narration takes readers effectively into her personal emotional maelstrom. Relationships and their dynamics play themselves out naturally and with satisfying complexity; readers see all too clearly the damage done in the name of love. If Sophie's friendship with George feels familiar, readers won't begrudge her the only human who shows her warmth. Set in the waning days of "don't ask, don't tell," this portrait of a military town rings true. (Fiction. 14 & up)
Children's Literature - Denise Daley
Quinn is a teenage girl growing up in a small town where everyone knows everyone and almost everyone joins the military or has a military past. Quinn's boyfriend Carey enlists and has barely been gone when Quinn is caught cheating on him. A photograph of her in the arms of an unrecognizable boy circulates through the entire town and Quinn is labeled as a traitor and slut. Everyone passes judgment including her friends, her teachers, and even the boy she was hugging. Technically, though, Quinn was not really cheating. The problem is that she cannot tell anyone about the real nature of her relationship with Carey. Quinn's strength is tested as former friends push her in the hall and carve slurs into her locker. When Carey becomes missing in action, Quinn's loyalty is tested even further. This well-written drama is fast paced and realistic. Readers will empathize with Quinn as she risks everything in her desire to keep her word and to protect her friend. Reviewer: Denise Daley
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781442454132
  • Publisher: Simon Pulse
  • Publication date: 8/28/2012
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 949,572
  • Age range: 14 years
  • Lexile: HL700L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.82 (w) x 8.32 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Corrine Jackson lives in San Francisco, where she works at a top marketing agency, managing campaigns for several Fortune 500 clients. She has bachelor and master degrees in English, and an MFA in Creative Writing from Spalding University. Visit her at CorrineJackson.com or on Twitter at @Cory_Jackson.

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

“Carey Breen is MIA.”

His tongue weighs each word to cause the most pain.

My father’s news drops like a bomb, blasting the air from my lungs, and everything in me shrieks, Not Carey.

My dresser bites into my backbone. I deflate, clamping my fingers around the Nikon to hide how they tremble. I want to throw up, but my father blocks escape to the bathroom, his shoulders spanning the doorway. Late February morning sun slips through the window blinds and swaths his perma-sunburned face in blades of light and dark. Shadow camouflage.

My stomach twists and sweat slides down my sides. He doesn’t care what this news does to me. How it destroys me. His chin’s up. Wintergreen eyes narrowed under sparse blond eyebrows. Hairline retreating from the neat rows of lines crossing his forehead. I’m barely holding it together, and he doesn’t bother to hide his disappointment at my reaction to his words.

His lips thin. “Quinn, did you hear me?”

Yes, sir. Carey is MIA. Sir.

Since the scandal six months ago—that scandal we don’t speak of—my father says Carey’s name with reverence. They are two Marines, two men who’ve fought for a freedom I no longer feel. Comrades betrayed by the women they left behind.

Sand and grit have rubbed between the pleasantries in Carey’s e-mails since I stopped answering him weeks ago. We’re leaving Camp Leatherneck soon—pleasedon’ttell—we’ll be patrolling roads, clearing IEDs, something big’s coming—imissyou—you may not hear from me for a while—Godidon’twanttodie—you must be busy with school and all—talktomeQuinn—I hope to hear from you soon.

Carey could be a hostage. He could be dead, his brown body abandoned and decaying in a foreign country. The town has watched the CNN reports on Operation Moshtarak for the last week, tracking Carey’s battalion, the 1/6, as waves of Chinooks dropped troops into Marjah. Rockets, machine-gun fire, mortars, and IEDs met them. I’ve held my breath for days, trying to pick Carey out in the news footage. What if . . .

Not Carey.

His parents must be destroyed. They know by now, if my father knows. How did they react? The Marines would have sent at least one soldier to the Breens’ house, and I imagine how Mr. Breen looked hearing the news. Evaluating. Slow and methodical, his eyes focused on the ceiling to hide his thoughts. When composed, he would catch his wife’s worried gaze, and Mrs. Breen would KNOW. As if she waited—expected—the worst to happen. Her body would fold, welcoming sadness, drowning in it, and Mr. Breen would support her, catching her before she hit the ground. If she blamed me before, it will now be a thousand times worse. I can’t even grieve for Carey—not where people can see me.

Carey has sewed my mouth shut.

Pleasedon’ttell.

Nice girls don’t cheat on their hero boyfriends. Damn you, Carey.

“Quinn?” My father sounds impatient.

My rage blows away, leaving hopelessness in its place. “I heard you, sir.”

“You’re not to leave the house unless it’s to go to school or to work. People are going to be in a lot of pain when they find out. I don’t want your presence making them feel worse. You’ve done enough, you hear me?”

I nod. He’s right. Nobody will want to see me. Today, I will not go to Grave Woods. I set the Nikon on the dresser behind me, among the neat pile of lenses and memory cards. My hands feel useless without my camera. Void.

My father assumes I’ll obey. His uniform has starched his backbone so straight he walks tall even in faded jeans and a worn Marine THE FEW. THE PROUD. sweatshirt. Lieutenant Colonel Cole Quinn’s orders—like the Ten Commandments—are disobeyed at your own peril.

His eyes narrow to two dashes and sweep my room. They land on the bed with its sheets and blanket tucked military-style, as he taught me. The dresser with its clean top. The desk with the books lined up by size and subject. Nothing out of place. No thing to criticize except me. I cannot remember the last time his eyes stayed on mine. After I was branded the “town slut,” he looks through me.

Maybe if we both wish hard enough, I will become invisible, with watery veins and glass bones. My translucent heart will beat on, but my father will not notice.

He sees only my mother in the spaces around me.

*
• *

He leaves my bedroom door wide open. Moments later, my father’s study door shuts with a snick. In his sanctuary, the bookshelves lining one wall tell the history of war from A (American Revolution) to Z (the Zulu Civil War). There are biographies of generals, World War II memoirs, and academic tomes about US military strategy during Vietnam. My father studies war as a hobby like other men hunt Bambi or rebuild classic engines.

A mahogany desk faces the Wall of War, and there are no chairs in the room other than my father’s. I wonder if he has done this on purpose.

Holed up in his office, my father will not reappear until chow time at 1800 hours. Alone, I lie on my bed, pull the plain sky-blue bedspread over my head, and cry inside my tent.

The phone rings from the hallway—Dad took my phone out of my room six months ago—and I pull myself together to answer it. Barefoot, I pad across the wood floor and into the hallway to the small antique sewing table that my mother restored a million years ago. It has the phone she put there. It’s the old rotary kind, where you slip your finger into the holes and spin the dial for each number. Mess up and you have to start the process all over again.

“Hello?”

No answer.

The door to my father’s office cracks open—his way of letting me know that he is listening.

“Hello?”

A sigh that’s really more of a grunt comes in response. I know the voice, but he rarely speaks to me.

“Hey, Nikki,” I lie. I lean against the wall and wind the spiral phone cord around my finger as if I’m settling in to talk to my old friend. My father’s footsteps recede as he falls back to his desk. I grip the phone tighter.

“Talk to me, Blake,” I beg in a whisper. “I know it’s you.” We hadn’t always liked each other, but we’d had Carey in common. Me, his girlfriend; and Blake Kelly, his best friend who was more like a brother. We’d always kept the peace because Carey demanded that kind of loyalty. Despite everything that happened, that shouldn’t have changed.

No answer.

“You heard, didn’t you? Are you with his parents?” It made sense. The Breens have turned to Blake for comfort since Carey received his orders. I’m guessing he’s calling to tell me about Carey so I’m not blindsided at school Monday.

“Do they blame me?” I don’t want to know, but the question scrapes out of me. Do you blame me?

Click.

“It’s not my fault,” I whisper, but Blake’s gone.

*
• *

There are some things nice girls don’t do in a town like Sweet-haven, North Carolina. Six years ago, before my mother walked out on us with my father’s brother, she told me, “First chance you get, girl, run like hell. And for the love of all that’s holy, don’t end up a soldier’s wife.” A smudge of bitterness clung to the smoke from her Virginia Slims Menthol. Her Avon’s “Light My Fire” red lips pursed around the filter one last time before she crushed the stained cigarette butt into the glass ashtray she hid whenever my father came home on leave. Short black curls spiraled in defiant abandon when she shook her head. “I wish I’d never seen An Officer and a Gentleman. Damn Richard Gere and his dress whites.”

At eleven, I had no idea what my mother meant, but I understood one thing: My mother wouldn’t pretend to be a nice girl forever.

With her tanned skin and snow-white sundress, my mother reminded me of actresses in the old movies she liked to watch. I had told her so, and she had caressed my cheek, the warmth of her fingers lingering for hours after. I loved my mom best when my father was gone. When his battalion deployed their fighting would cease, and the temperature in our house increased by ten degrees.

The summer I turned eleven, though, she dumped me at my grandmother’s, dropped a kiss on my forehead, and told me to “be a good girl.” She waved good-bye from the passenger seat of Uncle Eddy’s Buick. It wasn’t until my father returned a month later that I realized she wasn’t coming back. And I could only blame myself.

After all, I’d told him the one thing sure to tear our family apart. I’d told my father that Uncle Eddy had slept in my mother’s bed.

Located just west of Camp Lejeune, Sweethaven had a good number of sons (and some daughters) who’d enlisted straight out of high school. Many families could claim a Devil Dog in every generation, and all could agree: Cheating spouses were the scum of the earth.

My father returned from Iraq, and I trailed him unnoticed through our house. Tight-lipped and dry-eyed, he studied his uniforms, marching in solitary formation in the empty closet. My mother had committed one last sacrilegious act before escaping. His once pristine blue dress uniforms sported gaping holes from her best sewing shears.

My father’s hand shook when he touched a brass button clinging to a jacket lapel by a single thread. I understood then the golden rule my mother had broken. You didn’t disrespect the uniform. Ever. Not in a family that could trace five generations of soldiers who had served their country. Not in a town that could claim its forefathers had thumbed their noses at the British during the American Revolution and had lost sons to each war since.

My mother’s name was not mentioned in our house after that day. And I—lovingly named Sophie Topper Quinn after my mother and my father’s half-brother, Captain Edward Topper—became Quinn at my father’s insistence. Quinn, the girl who would be better than her mother.

My father’s epic ability to freeze people out had begun with my mother. Not that she’d ever tried to come back or see us again, but he’d managed to erase her from everything except my memories. He stripped her belongings from our house, barring the few things I hid in the attic. Their wedding photos disappeared one day while I was at school, along with every other photo of her.

Later, I wondered if I really remembered her the way she looked, or if she had become a screwed-up Debra Winger/Elizabeth Taylor collage. Other times, I caught my father watching me with cold, dead eyes, and I prayed he was remembering her, that my resemblance to her made him think of her.

Because I didn’t want to believe my father hated me that much.

Especially when all of Sweethaven thought I’d become her too: the town slut cheating on her Marine.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 22 )
Rating Distribution

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(14)

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(5)

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(2)

2 Star

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 22 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 28, 2012

    Realistic fiction at its best

    This is one of those books that shakes you up, that keeps you turning the pages with a fast paced plot and motivated characters, but then it levels up and makes you think about the cost of freedom. It makes you realize that integrity can be a lonely place. It makes you hope that you've never muddied up your feet in the grey swamp of judgement. This is realistic fiction at its very best - if you enjoy books by Laurie Halse Anderson and John Green, I highly recommend IF I LIE.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 28, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    This One Gets You Right in the Heart!

    When I was in high school, I became fascinated with POW's from Vietnam. I was haunted by the idea that these guys had never come home. Who were they? Where were they? And what had they left behind? I "adopted" a missing soldier and wore my MIA bracelet until it wore out and broke in half.

    When I was in college, I was a girlfriend of a guy who was in the army. Then I married him--making me a military wife. I fell in love with this fierce, dedicated, kind, bigger-than-life community. And sometimes I hated being just another piece in a finely tuned machine--even it it was made up of some very wonderful people. Sometimes I felt a little lost. I didn't always like who I was supposed to be and what was expected of me. I didn't know it then, but I was a girl who had things to say--weird, slightly off center things to say--and not speaking them was a bit unhealthy. So, I related to Quinn--having lived that life with my own kind of secrets pushed down inside me.

    I'm sharing this information with you because I want you to know, that in my opinion, Corrine Jackson got it right. As I read her words, it took me back...

    I'm a huge fan of authors who create people with depth. I like to see the characters have faults AND triumphs. Not only did Jackson do this seamlessly, but she also accomplished this with her presentation of the military. I both loved and hated the institution and it's affect on those involved in it--just like I did in real life. She didn't use hero worship and she didn't demonize either. She simply acknowledged that like all of us, it is made up of the good and the bad.

    I was also grateful to see her humorous and touching relationship with an elderly veteran, George. I have always had a soft spot for the older generation. I think they are gifts that we often let pass us by. Jackson brought me to tears with her gentle reminder that it takes only one person to make a difference in someone else's life.

    IF I LIE is a well written, beautifully balanced, heart-wrenching book that is about so much more than a snapshot of people in a small military town. I hope it moves you as much as it did me.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 26, 2013

    This is a must read!

    This book has a lot of heart and dose not take the easy way out. We see the struggle and fight in the story. This is a must read book!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 19, 2012

    Unforgettable, delightful, special

    Unforgettable, delightful, special

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 8, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    ¿If I Lie¿ has been on my to-read shelf forever, hiding amongst

    “If I Lie” has been on my to-read shelf forever, hiding amongst all of the bright covers and eloquent summaries. It has a simple cover and a no-frills synopsis. I’m currently cursing my tendency to gravitate towards aforementioned glamorous covers and summaries because I wish I’d read “If I Lie” sooner.
    Quinn’s done the unthinkable: she kissed a guy who is not Carey, her boyfriend. And she got caught. Being branded a cheater would be bad enough, but Quinn is deemed a traitor, and shunned by all of her friends. Because Carey’s not just any guy—he’s serving in Afghanistan and revered by everyone in their small, military town.

    Quinn could clear her name, but that would mean revealing secrets that she’s vowed to keep—secrets that aren’t hers to share. And when Carey goes MIA, Quinn must decide how far she’ll go to protect her boyfriend…and her promise.

    This book is utterly H-E-A-R-T-B-R-E-A-K-I-N-G. And, yes, I really did needed to spell it out for emphasis. It isn’t a sad book—it does have sad moments, though. It’s painfully truthful, and it explores human emotion tremendously well; that’s what makes it heartbreaking.

    The beautiful writing certainly doesn’t help stop the leaking tears either.


    "One... two... three...
    One… two—
    I am bits of who everyone thinks I am. One... Blake’s Q. Two... Carey’s Quinn. Three… Sophie Jr., taking after her w**re mom. Four... middle name Topper for Uncle Eddy the Honorable. Which piece is really me?
    I’m plummeting and terrified of hitting rock bottom.
    I want to be someone new.
    Sophie Topper Quinn, no more."


    Jackson also does a great job of highlighting sensitive topics, such as cheating, homosexuality, abuse, bad parent-child relationships, the brutal effect of war, etc. The main character’s mom walked out of her life years ago (with her dad’s brother, nonetheless). Her father treats her with cold indifference because she looks like her Mom. Many characters came of the battlefield with scars inside and out. Many have parents that did.

    I also feel the need to point out that there is lots of photography in “If I Lie.” Quinn uses it as a form of expression, a way to forget all of the s**t that comes her way. I’ve always loved photography, so it really helped me click with Quinn.

    The characters in “If I Lie” are amazingly realistic; they’re all layered in the way that only human beings can be, an exterior hiding secrets and emotions. I don’t think I hated any character. Not even the bully because I know her reason for being one—not that that justifies bullying.

    I just want to go through and list a few of the characters that stuck out to me.

    George: he was one of my favorites because, even though he’s a cranky old man (kind of like my grandpa), he’s a tremendously kind person. He’s been through war. He knows not to waste life by seeing only the dirty misconceptions. He sees Quinn for who she really is. Plus, he’s hilarious.

    Sophie Topper Quinn or just Quinn: her life sucks. Her mom is a two-timing b***h who ran off with her uncle, leaving her with a cold father who sees a copy of her mother every time he looks at her. Especially when she’s labeled a cheater. That’s the key word: labeled. Sophie didn’t really cheat on Carey; they broke up, but maintained appearances because of his secret. If I was in her place, I don’t know if I would’ve kept his secret. It makes you wonder: Am I a good enough person? Would I have protected my ex like that, even if I did still love him (as a best friend)?

    Carey: I really want to hate him for making Quinn hide his secret. It‘s a selfish and cowardly thing for him to do. But, somehow Jackson manages to highlight his and Quinn’s past in a way that makes him hard to hate.

    Blake aka Carey’s best friend and the guy that Quinn “cheated” on Carey with: he is certainly no knight in shining armor. No one knows that he’s the guy that Sophie was caught in a scandalous embrace with—it was a pretty bad picture taken on someone’s phone. If they did, everyone would hate him. He can’t let that happen because he made a promise to take care of Carey’s parents in his place; he can’t risk revealing the truth because it means breaking his promise to his missing best friend. Hiding the fact that he “stole” his best friend’s girlfriend makes him just as cowardly as Carey, doesn’t it? But, isn’t fear a part of human nature?

    He does actually care for Quinn. A lot.

    And he makes that clear by trying to protect her, even when he’s too afraid to step into the gunfire with her.

    The broken relationship he has with Quinn is definitely another heartbreaking factor in this book.

    I’m still trying to decide whether I love the ending or hate it. The ending is all about forgiveness and starting over. Quinn chooses herself instead of making a decision because of a guy, and that’s really refreshing. The ending fit the book really well, but things definitely didn’t turn out the way I hoped they would. I really can’t say anything else about it without spoiling the book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2014

    A bittersweet love

    This book was AH-MAZING AND I LOVED IT!!! I loved how the author put some plot twist to keep it interesting. What i didnt like was how everyone just turned against her. So what if people cheat, friends cant just abandon you like that. I feel like the whole town was to be blamed and this ordeal wouldve gone smoother if she would've had any supporters in the midst of shame she was put upon. ~Bree

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2014

    Marines

    My cousin jacob is in the marines

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  • Posted January 3, 2014

    I have to say, this book blew me away.  There were several point

    I have to say, this book blew me away.  There were several points and times where it put me in tears and my husband came through and asked me if I was okay, that is how emotional it made me.  Quinn's character was so strong and took so much abuse from so many people, her father, her so called friends, even the boy who claims to be in love with her.




    Seriously, this is the kind of emotions that a truly talented author should be able to stir up in you.  I loved this book and would absolutely recommend it to someone else.  Just make sure that you have a few tissues near by, cause it really pulls on the heart strings.   I can't get into too much more detail without giving away too much of the plot, but trust me, this is one to add to your to be read pile!




    So far my favorite book of the year, hands down.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2013

    Iluvdiante

    This book is a really good book if you likevit then might as well as read it dont yiu think i finished this book just resently

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  • Posted June 10, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    ***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog*** If I Lie by Cor

    ***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

    If I Lie by Corrine Jackson
    Publisher: Simon Pulse
    Publication Date: August 28, 2012
    Rating: 4 stars
    Source: Copy sent from the author

    Summary (from Goodreads):

    A powerful debut novel about the gray space between truth and perception.

    Quinn’s done the unthinkable: she kissed a guy who is not Carey, her boyfriend. And she got caught. Being branded a cheater would be bad enough, but Quinn is deemed a traitor, and shunned by all of her friends. Because Carey’s not just any guy—he’s serving in Afghanistan and revered by everyone in their small, military town.

    Quinn could clear her name, but that would mean revealing secrets that she’s vowed to keep—secrets that aren’t hers to share. And when Carey goes MIA, Quinn must decide how far she’ll go to protect her boyfriend…and her promise.


    What I Liked:

    I have not read many books dealing with the military (other than Something Like Normal by Trish Doller, which I read AFTER I read this book), so I was not sure what to expect from this book. I have to say, this book pulled at my hearstrings and made me want to cry many, many times (and I am NOT a crier, for movies or books or anyone). 

    I had a feeling I knew what was wrong with Carey, both physically, and why Quinn had to lie for him. I felt so bad for Quinn, because she went through so many awful things, in order to keep a secret. I really felt bad for Blake, because he did not deserve to not get what he wanted. 

    This story is so twisted, but in a bittersweet, heartbreaking way. Quinn cannot be happy no matter what she does. Blake cannot get what he wants. Carey cannot get what he wants. It seemed like there was no way that anyone could get any silver lining out of this situation.

    I really liked the multiple plots - of Quinn dealing with Carey's secret, and Quinn dealing with her mother, and Quinn's past being revealed. It made me sad for Quinn, sad for Quinn's father, and sad for Quinn's mother. I just felt bad for everyone, even though, in a way, everyone did something that was bad. I do not know how Ms. Jackson did it, but she wove this story in a way that made me hate and love everyone. I think if I had to really hate anyone, it would be Carey, for asking Quinn to keep that secret. Not because of what the secret was, but because he ruined her life by asking her to keep it.

    I liked how the story switched from past to present. This kind of thing is either done very well, or absolutely abysmally. Ms. Jackson did a wonderful job with the switches. It kept me on my toes, to make sure I understood what was going on. And it was an interesting way of revealing Quinn's past and present at the same time.

    The ending was very bittersweet, but I think it ended well. It is resolved, but there are some things about the end that not everyone will like. I completely respect Quinn's decisions. Honestly, I may have done the same thing if I were her.


    What I Did Not Like:

    I said it already, but I really did not like the fact that Carey asked Quinn to keep that secret, and I guess, that Quinn actually kept the secret. That is SO not something that you should ask a person to keep quiet. Obviously, there would be no book if Quinn had not kept the secret. But I still did not like this. Also, I really, really wish Quinn could have, um, had a nice ending with that nice boy, instead of doing what she did. But that's okay, because I completely understand why she did what she did.


    Would I Recommend It:

    Yes! This book is so bittersweet, but it is so, so good. And sad. And good. It's not a light, quick read, but it's definitely worth the time. 


    Rating:

    4 stars. This contemporary novel is definitely one for the ages!

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  • Posted February 21, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    This book was just short of amazing. The writing was wonderful.

    This book was just short of amazing.

    The writing was wonderful. The characters were real and had depth. The storyline was strong.

    It wasn't perfect, though. While it was a quick read, there were a few parts that seemed to drone on a bit. Sometimes, in my opinion, the author got a bit long-winded with unnecessary detail. There were also a few times were I was irritated with Sophie (Quinn, Q). While I completely understand her reasoning for keeping Carey's secret, I thought the whole martyr act was just a bit too much. She could have opened up to someone, especially George.

    Overall, I enjoyed this book. The imperfections aren't big enough to take away from the book's powerfulness. I would read another of Corrine Jackson's books. She's a talented author.

    Rating

    4.5/5

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2013

    AMAZINGGGG!!!!

    This story contains stuff about the war and i learn so much about it. How soldiers get when they come home.

    Sophie Quinn was a popular girl with her boyfriend, Carey, the marine. She has kept a secret from everybody and all her friends abused her and hate her thinking she had done something to their marine.

    I read this amazing book in a day. It kept me on my toes. I had to read all of this to know what happenn to Sophie. Im a teenager and i criedd. I cried like a babyy because this story really touched my heart.

    If youre looking for something intense with emotion, i recommend this book. Hope you enjoy this as much as i did. :)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2012

    Good.

    I liked this book alot. Quinn was a character who really came to lifen I found myself crying during her story. I kind of was hoping she would end up with Blake but I don't feel that would have been the best end. He let her take all the blame I thought he was a coward. I highly recommend this book

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  • Posted December 10, 2012

    Decent Read...

    This book was a decent read. POSSIBLE SPOILER ALERT!! I just didn't understand why she couldn't have told everyone that they had broken up. It seems like they could have at least done that. The fact that she also doesn't end up with the guy she really liked, and who liked her, kind of ruined the story for me. I mean, I understand there were a lot of outside factors, but I had hoped for a happy ending after the lengthy read I had just endured. Books are my escape and sometimes I just want to read a book that has a really happy ending (even if it isn't always realistic). Can't say it was my favorite story ever or that I would read it again any time soon.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 27, 2012

    I have never had so much emotion during a book than reading this

    I have never had so much emotion during a book than reading this one! I
    felt like crying during some of the book because of what Quinn has to go
    through. It has to be one of my favorite contemporaries because it was
    beautifully written. From the first page I was addicted and I had to
    read what will happen next. I did like how Corrine Jackson made the
    novel very focused on the topic of Marines fighting in the war, which is
    a different take in YA but it now making an appearance which is good to
    read about how relationships are during that time when the boys go on
    tour. It covers so much and it will give you a perspective of torn
    families, the army and even friendship. The novel begins with a scandal
    about our main character Sophie Topher Quinn who was caught kissing a
    guy other than her perfect boyfriend Carey. This is not a good thing in
    a small town where everyone talks. Mostly everyone in the town is part
    of the army and when Carey goes missing she is still not able to talk to
    Carey's family, her friends, when the real truth is that Quinn did not
    cheat on Carey. With all the blame towards her she still would not
    reveal Carey's news before he left and, this news would break him apart.
    The entire novel was intense and heart breaking. I fell in love with
    each of the characters as I began reading more about their story.
    Corinne painted the picture for this novel and she succeed with grabbing
    my attention. George was definitely one of my favorite characters
    because he is the one that does help Quinn become the person she is by
    the end of the novel. George is soo funny, and he makes the story have a
    tole model who helps Quinn through all her problems. He is a elderly
    Veteran of the War at the VA Medical Center where Quinn helps/volunteers
    which is another thing that holds her together through school. Quinn is
    stubborn for admitting the truth. She is in a self-less in love with her
    best friend for Carey. It was moving to see how Quinn was feeling. Her
    dad pretends to ignore her because of the scandal, Quinn life is like
    any family: Dysfunctional. I was very sad for her at some parts as well
    as happy that she is able to stay strong for herself while people were
    bullying her. The characters were realistic and understandable which
    many teens can relate to. The romance had very little, but that is not
    the main subject from what the real story takes place and Sophie's
    relationships are on rocky grounds. This also includes her parents which
    many children/teens would go through if your father and mother were
    always fighting. Her father and mother were another story that grew.
    This books is definitely one book people should pick up because so many
    people can relate to Quinn's position. This story will bring you to
    tears, and make you fall in love with her story as she tries to come to
    terms with relationships, family, and finding who she is. It will be
    unforgettable once you read this amazing read!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted March 17, 2013

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