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Little Black Lies

Little Black Lies

4.2 12
by Tish Cohen

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Sara Black is tiptoeing across a fraying tightrope.

As the new eleventh grader at Anton High–the most elite public school in the country–she sticks out like an old VW bus in a parking lot full of shiny BMWs. But being the new kid also brings a certain advantageous anonymity.

In Anton High’s world of privilege, intelligence, and wealth,


Sara Black is tiptoeing across a fraying tightrope.

As the new eleventh grader at Anton High–the most elite public school in the country–she sticks out like an old VW bus in a parking lot full of shiny BMWs. But being the new kid also brings a certain advantageous anonymity.

In Anton High’s world of privilege, intelligence, and wealth, Sara can escape her family’s tarnished past and become whomever she wants.

And what’s the harm in telling a few little black lies when it can lead to popularity? That is, until another it girl at Anton becomes jealous of Sara’s social climbing.

With her balance evaporating, one small push could bring Sara crashing down.

Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Robbie L. Flowers
It was not a lie, really. Sara Black just happened to forget to correct the kids at her exclusive high school when they presumed that she was from London, England, and not Lunden, Massachusetts. It is tough being the new kid, and she just wanted to make her move as seamless as possible. Then the lies began. She had to do it to keep up with the image they created for her, right? Sara does not want the academic elite from Anton High School to discover that her father is actually the school's obsessive-compulsive janitor. After all, she is just starting to blend in with some of the stars of the school. One in particular, Carling, even begins copying answers to her tests and inviting her to exclusive study groups. Sara finds herself surrounded by people who believe that according to the Genius Theory, she is the type destined to be employed scrubbing their floors. What's a girl to do? Will Sara continue the masquerade? Or will someone stop the show for her? This page-turner takes readers into a world of educational snobbery at its finest. The characters are real, and readers will feel as if they are right alongside Sara for the ride. Cohen skillfully keeps her readers fully engaged. They will find themselves cringing at the predicaments Sara enters and wonder whether she will completely sell out. Reviewer: Robbie L. Flowers
School Library Journal
Gr 7–10—Sara Black enters Boston's elite Anton High as a junior, something practically unheard of and made possible because her OCD-suffering dad is the new janitor. Sara stands out immediately as a top student, eliciting the envy and attention of the school's upper echelon, in particular queen bee Carling Burnack. When Carling assumes that Sara has moved into town from London, England, instead of nearby lower-class Lundon, Sara doesn't correct her. It's just the beginning of the lies she tells as she struggles in her new role as Carling's number one frenemy. As one might expect, Sara's lies catch up with her, and they cause trouble for her father. As her world comes tumbling down, the teen sees the situation for what it is and works on repairing her relationship with her father. While highly readable and well written, the book suffers from a too-predictable plot that has little to say beyond black-and-white moralizing. However, those looking for a compassionate portrayal of a parent in the throes of OCD will find something here. Readers expecting a "Gossip Girl"-esque tale of cattiness will find Carling no competitor for Blair and might be better guided to Sara Shepard's "Pretty Little Liars" series (HarperTeen).—Jennifer Barnes, Homewood Library, IL
Kirkus Reviews
At 16, Sara Black should know that telling one lie leads to another, but when she transfers from the boondocks to Boston's exclusive Anton High School, she finds herself spinning more lies than she would ever have imagined to conceal her true identity. At the heart of Sarah's lies is her father's job as Anton's newest janitor, which to Anton's elite-Ants-is unthinkable, especially Carling, the school's popular but evil beauty, who has more than her fair share of secrets. Determined to protect herself, Sarah predictably fabricates a glamorous life that eventually comes unraveled. The text escapes tedium, however, as Cohen expertly interweaves Sarah's father's battle with OCD and its interconnected ties with her mother's infidelity and heartbreaking desertion of her family. Thoughtful and intense, this text is truly about families and the havoc that illness can wreak. (Fiction. YA)

Product Details

Publication date:
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.10(d)
830L (what's this?)
Age Range:
14 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

Tish Cohen is the author of several books for adults and young readers. Her adult novel Town House was a 2008 finalist for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize Best First Book Award (Canada and Caribbean region) and is in development as a feature film. Cohen’s middle-grade novels, The Invisible Rule of the Zöe Lama and The One and Only Zöe Lama, were published in Canada and the United States. . She has contributed articles to some of Canada’s largest newspapers, including The Globe and Mail and The National Post. Having grown up in Los Angeles and Orange County in California, and Montreal, Cohen now calls Toronto home. You can visit her online at www.tishcohen.com.

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Little Black Lies 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
its a k book its easy 2 read and if urjust lookin for suptin 2 read u should read dis its actully quite good
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AnnaSAS More than 1 year ago
I thought that this book was one that was amazing. It kept me interested through out the whole book. It is more for teenage girl because of the girl/boy drama, and the lies people say to make themselves seem perfect. As a new girl in town, all Sara wants is to be popular and she does, but she gets too deep in the lies she's told. Each chapter Sara Black gets a little bit deeper into the drama of being a high schooler at Anton high, the rich preppy school. The author did a good job of creating plot twists which made me not want to put the book down. Sara doesn't want people at her school to find out that her dad is the school janitor that everyone makes fun of. While every other kid at the school has parents who are doctors and lawyers and record producers, Sara has a father who cleans for a living. Overall, I think that this book is one of the best books I've ever read and I highly recommend it.
Caira Lewis More than 1 year ago
i really like this book but in the middle i got kind of hard to read but if you like angus thong an perfect snogging i think you woild really enjoy this book to.
ali_catt More than 1 year ago
I thought this book was well written. It was also intresting and I really liked it. I never lost intrest once.
redleocat1 More than 1 year ago
Hmmm...Little Black Lies is an awesome book! I loved it. It had all the good qualities in a book i was looking for, it was well written, witty, and the characters were believable. I loved the message in the book, as the story goes on Sara learns some important lessons about the value of a good parent(i mean her dad is awesome), the love of a friend, and the importance of honesty.Because a little black lie can lead to just a BIG web of lies. Sara was my favorite character, being the main character she took on those challenges in life like her dad's OCD, her parents divorce(her mom being so far away in) no friends, and a new school.I think a lot of teens can relate to her. The only problem i had with her was the lies, but i wasn't surprised that she was just making an invented life to impress her peers well the High School Mean Girl and her clique. At one point in the book I was so mad at Sara because of what she said about her father. At times i really did think she didn't deserve a father like Charlie.But that's what made her believable because she had her flaws, it made her human. I liked Poppy too! I wish she had a bigger role in the book. I guess we can call her the weird girl who video camera's everything but she knows who she is and what she wants. All The characters were awesome(LEO!!)They well developed, they had strong hero/heroine personalities. I liked the way Tish Cohen dealt with lying(being a troublesome/difficult issue). As much as i like Sara i didn't like her lying. But I'm not angel either.In the end it proved how much trouble you can cause and how much you can hurt people. "Honesty is KEY",as my teacher would always say and never to abandon the people you love most. As for the romance, It wasn't a big part of the book, but when there was some(tease lol) it was sweet. The ending was perfecto! and Leo and Sara are a cute couple. I'm happy with the ending.So if you haven't read this book you should!
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Sara is going to a new school. The school she'll be attending is also the school that is hiring her father as the new janitor. Her mother has run away with one of Sara's former high school teachers to France. Sara is very embarrassed about her father, especially since he suffers from OCD. He also drives old VW buses. Her new school is one full of gifted students and snobs. Sara is tired of having a life that is ruined by her parents. She decides that she will invent a new persona. She gets entangled in a web of lies that threatens to destroy not only herself but her father, as well. LITTLE BLACK LIES is a good read. Sara is a believable character, and by the end of the book you know that she would make a good friend. She learns important lessons about the value of a good parent, the love of a friend, and the importance of honesty. This is the second book by Tish Cohen that I have read and I really like her writing. She likes to write about issues that are in the news but are those that we really don't know much about. This book focuses on OCD. I enjoyed that it wasn't by the sufferer but by a family member who has to live with the person with the condition. This is a very good book, well-written and also entertaining.