The Last Time I Lied

The Last Time I Lied

by Riley Sager


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In the latest thriller from the bestselling author of Final Girls, a young woman returns to her childhood summer camp to uncover the truth about a tragedy that happened there fifteen years ago.

Two Truths and a Lie. The girls played it all the time in their cabin at Camp Nightingale. Vivian, Natalie, Allison, and first-time camper Emma Davis, the youngest of the group. But the games ended the night Emma sleepily watched the others sneak out of the cabin into the darkness. The last she—or anyone—saw of them was Vivian closing the cabin door behind her, hushing Emma with a finger pressed to her lips.

Now a rising star in the New York art scene, Emma turns her past into paintings—massive canvases filled with dark leaves and gnarled branches that cover ghostly shapes in white dresses. When the paintings catch the attention of Francesca Harris-White, the wealthy owner of Camp Nightingale, she implores Emma to return to the newly reopened camp as a painting instructor. Seeing an opportunity to find out what really happened to her friends all those years ago, Emma agrees.

Familiar faces, unchanged cabins, and the same dark lake haunt Nightingale, even though the camp is opening its doors for the first time since the disappearances. Emma is even assigned to the same cabin she slept in as a teenager, but soon discovers a security camera—the only one on the property—pointed directly at its door. Then cryptic clues that Vivian left behind about the camp's twisted origins begin surfacing. As she digs deeper, Emma finds herself sorting through lies from the past while facing mysterious threats in the present. And the closer she gets to the truth about Camp Nightingale and what really happened to those girls, the more she realizes that closure could come at a deadly price.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781524743079
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 07/03/2018
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 44,626
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.40(d)

About the Author

The Last Time I Lied is the second thriller from Riley Sager, the pseudonym of an author who lives in Princeton, New Jersey. Riley's first novel, Final Girls, was a national and international bestseller that has been published in more than two-dozen countries.

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Excerpted from "The Last Time I Lied"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Riley Sager.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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The Last Time I Lied: A Novel 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 30 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a great read. Had me guessing the entire book, couldn’t wait to get to the end. The ending was so unexpected. Loved this book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A fantastic read, I loved it. Can't wait for her next one.
marykuhl 4 months ago
I read reviews that said this book didn't hold up to The Final Girls, lucky for me then this was the first book I have read by riley Sager. This book kept me guessing until the end. The last sentence of Part I had my jaw drop. I found my suspicions shifting to every one, right along with Emma. the only thing that frustrated me, was I knew where to look for the girls long before Emma did. Maybe it was the suspicions, the shock or just her overall disbelief that kept her from figuring that out. I truly didn't see the twist at the end and I was surprised at Emma, doing the right thing instead keeping loyalty or a secret. Overall, this is a sold 5 star for me. can't wait to read the author again.
Anonymous 4 months ago
Anonymous 7 months ago
I'm not good at reviews
Anonymous 8 months ago
This book was great from start to finish!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The story grabbed me from the beginning to the end. What a fantastic ending. Love it.
Sensitivemuse More than 1 year ago
What I enjoyed about this one is the twists and turns happening all throughout the novel. You think it’s one thing, but it’s leading to another, yet out comes another possible solution to the mystery however it ends up being another red herring and so on. The guessing games keep the book on your toes. The plot flows through smoothly, alternating between past and present so you get a feel for the background story on the events leading up as to why Emma is back. There were times where you had to question her sanity because her behavior was erratic and unstable. As mentioned before, the guessing games throughout the novel kept the plot going and exciting to read. Expect mean girl behavior and shenanigans, and Emma’s character overall isn’t too likable but tolerable at the most. Vivian isn’t any better but the role she takes upon herself as a ‘big sister’ is endearing and gets instant idolization from Emma. What I loved the most about this book is I wasn’t expecting such a great ending. I was thinking it was going to be a lackluster one at the most with a simple explanation as to what was behind the girls disappearances. It’s not until literally, the last pages of the novel where you get hit with a mega surprise and it was instant mind blow. I was left shocked for a fair amount of time as it was expertly done. I heard more good things about Sager’s other works so I’ll definitely be picking them up. Hope they’re just as good as this one!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm a pretty avid mystery/thriller/crime novel reader and I tend to figure out the ending way before it happens. Didn't happen with this book! The characters were all well developed and you could tell who all was talking by their personalities. The dialogue didn't mesh into one which allowed a certain flow throughout he book. I never had to guess or reread to figure out who was saying what.
Teri_Caiazzo More than 1 year ago
This is a wonderful suspenseful book, that will keep you at the edge of your seat from beginning to the end. Emma Davis went to Camp Nightingale fifteen years ago, she was in a cabin with three older girls that went missing, and were never found. Emma never really got over it, but she is an artist, that keeps painting the three girls faces behind the wooded area, where she believes they disappeared. During the police investigation, she accuses the oldest son of the owner of the camp, of causing the disappearance of the girls. The camp owner now wants to re-open the camp, and asks Emma to be the art teacher there, though hesitant at first, she feels that she needs to be there, to possibly solve the mystery of the missing girls. This book takes many twists and turns, which is wonderful, and thrilling. I hope you enjoy this book as much as I did
Scarls17 More than 1 year ago
Riley Sager is a must read for me! I love that his thrillers are so entertaining that even if there wasn't a twist, they would still be a good read for me. BUT...his twists are also so good! I realllllllllly liked the ending of this book and I don't want to say ANYTHING about it.
tc3von More than 1 year ago
Our book club read this book and I can't wait to discuss!! 2 Truths and a lie: 1. You'll never guess the end. 2. I loved this book. 3. If you read this book you will be bored out of your mind. I COULDN'T PUT IT DOWN!! I loved the setting, the characters, the mystery and the ghosts...I will, for sure, be looking for more titles by Riley Sager. First sentence: This is how it begins. Last sentence: The time for lies is over.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great page turner.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very entertaining and plenty of twist. This was a hard book to put down.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great Book! Finished it in 2 days.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wish it never ended!
Theresa B More than 1 year ago
The Last Time I Lied was an unpredictable mystery.  I could not figure out who did it.  The main character, Emma Davis, is an artist.  She was the last person to see the girls that went missing and had been their friend.  When the summer camp re-opens, she is asked to be the art teacher.  She goes back to the camp 15 years later to try to figure out what happened to them.  Someone puts birds in her room and she knows someone is spying on her, but she doesn't who.  It's very creepy with a lot of twists and turns. It was told in alternating narratives from 15 years ago (when the girls went missing) to now.  The pacing was very fast paced and kept me on the edge of my seat. Great summer read!!
ABookAWeekES More than 1 year ago
"Sometimes a lie is more than just a lie. Sometimes it's the only way to win." I've recently recognized that a popular trend in the titling of thrillers has emerged amongst my reading list. It seems like every thriller with hopes of becoming the next best-seller has the word "lie" in their titles. Like many of the "girl" books that followed a similar trend after the success of Gone Girl, these "lie" books have had a pretty mixed result for me. Last year saw the breakout of author Riley Sager with his thriller Final Girls. Glowing reviews from many of my trusted blogging buddies and the fact that it had a "girl" title placed the novel on my TBR list. Alas, I never got around to reading it. When I got the chance to read Sager's latest novel The Last Time I Lied (see the word "lie" in the title?!), I eagerly jumped at the opportunity. As I started reading, I wasn't making comparisons to some of the other "lie" books that I've read. Rather, I kept thinking back to The Broken Girls by Simone St. James. Like that novel, The Last Time I Lied focuses on a main character who is haunted by the events of her past at a community institution for young girls. Unlike St. James, Sager steers clear of the supernatural, writing a story that is even more horrifying in the dark details of its ruthless reality. Emma has become renowned for her painting. Her series of dark forests on canvas have captured the imagination and renown of some of the art world's biggest names. Her admirers have no idea about the dark secrets that lie beneath the foliage of each painting. They have no idea about the secret that dates all the way back to her time as an attendee at Camp Nightengale. They have no idea that this secret is about to be brought out from behind the leaves and vines that Emma has desperately used to hide them. To go into any more details about the plot itself would ruin the fun and suspense for anyone planning to read it. Suffice it to say that this is an edge-of-your-seat read that kept me thoroughly engaged and guessing until the very end. Sager shifts between the present and past to reveal details about the characters and mystery surrounding the camp, expertly leading the reader through a maze of absorbing history and misdirection. As a protagonist, Emma strikes the right balance of inner turmoil and outer resolve. She works just as hard to solve the mystery as she does to come to terms with her emotional state. Sager beautifully manifests this internal struggle in the physical imagery of Emma's art. Amongst its other "lie" titled peers, The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager stands out as a top-notch thriller that easily surpasses the generic confines of its promotionally driven name.
readers_retreat More than 1 year ago
Having bought and absolutely devoured "Final Girls" Sager's debut I had super-high expectations for this one, his follow-up. As most readers know, expectations can be a double-edged sword - a book can either live up to them and proceed to blow your mind or let you down and leave you very disappointed. I am pleased to report that it is the former here, rather than the latter. In fact, I surprised myself by liking this one even more than the first! I feel it is far superior. Creepy and deliciously dark, "Last Time I Lied" has a series of spectacular twists scattered throughout. It starts off slow and steady but soon gathers place and from then it zips along. I particularly liked the dual narrative which helps to build the tension without introducing too many POV making it easy-to-follow. One slight gripe I had was that I felt there were too many characters involved in the story when there needn't have been. Despite this I enjoyed it immensely and I hope that Sager continues to write in this vein. I look forward to future books, if the first two are anything to go by it will be another stonker! I have no hesitation in recommending this to crime fans and in particular those who love an intriguing psychological thriller. Cleverly written, fresh and inventive you won't want to miss this one! Many thanks to Ebury Press for an ARC. I was not required to post a review and all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
CrazyCat_Alex More than 1 year ago
Things I learned from this book: 1. I’m glad I am not living in the 1900th because I certainly would be a candidate for the Asylum - you know, for reading.....a lot. 2. I have to thank my parents for never sending me to summer camp, it never is a great experience...ever. 3. We all know this one person (almost always it’s a girl), we think is our best friend, when really you got played....mine was called Suzy Emma’s story is told in alternating chapters between present day and 15 years ago, when the three girls from her cabin at summer camp go missing. That made, that I got a really good picture of Emma and her struggles. It was hard to see how she had all this problems even years after the event. And how much blame she put on herself. And just like Emma I had my suspicions about what had happened to the girls and who was responsible. In the end I didn’t get it right. I did not see this turn around coming..... And I loved it! It was perfect! Now I’m going to bug everyone with this book,
Barb-TRC More than 1 year ago
The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager is a standalone psychological thriller. I was not sure what to expect, as I have not read Sager before; and I am happy to say right from the start, I became engrossed in this suspenseful story. The Last Time I Lied was an amazing story line that switched between two POV’s- the current time and 15 years previously. 15 years ago, we meet our heroine, Emma, who 13 years old and forced by her mother to attend a summer camp. Emma shares a cabin with three girls, who are a few years older and already friends, but they quickly accept Emma. Vivian, Alison and Natalie are the three girls, who come from rich families and who have attended Camp Nightingale during the summer months. Vivian is the leader, and she makes Emma her protégé, showing her the ropes. But strange things happen in Camp Nightingale. Before the summer is out, Emma will wake during the night to find the three girls missing, never to be found. The story picks up 15 years later, when a grown up Emma is showcasing her paintings at a gallery. She paints canvases of a forest, with her three missing friends hidden within the pictures. Emma has created over 30 pictures, similar and with her secret hidden within. At the gallery show, she is approached by the person who owns Camp Nightingale, and wants to reopen it. She asks Emma to come for the summer and teach painting. At first Emma, who has not gotten over what happened all those years ago, wasn’t sure she wanted to go back, but in order to get closure and go on with her life, she accepts. The flashbacks go back 15 years where we learn everything about Emma, and the other girls, especially Vivian, who Emma became the closest to. In current time, Emma ends up sharing the same cabin with three young girls, being their counselor. Emma has her own secrets, which haunts her, and which are revealed in each flashback; she also begins to search to find clues about what really happened. What follows is an intriguing, exciting, at times creepy story that has us on the edge of our seats, especially with so many surprises and twists along the way. Every time we thought we knew who the culprit was, something else comes along to change things. Then things become intense when déjà vu strikes again. I thought Sager created some wonderful characters, even if they were flawed. The Last Time I Lied was a fantastic mystery thriller that was so well written, keeping us on our toes, with the suspense pulsating. There were so many secrets, lies, revelations that borderline on the dark creep factor. I will say this, without giving spoilers, that I was shocked at the ending, which was so superbly done. Riley Sager has created an ultra-powerful phenomenal story, and has now been added to my list of authors I need to read. If you enjoy thrillers, suspense, and mystery, look no further than The Last Time I Lied.
4840318 More than 1 year ago
3.5 stars I am, by far, in the clear minority with my review of Last Time I Lied. Many people are claiming it is so much better than Final Girls, but to me it was about the same. A good thriller, with an original premise, but not knock my socks off good. Based on all of the 5 star reviews, I would recommend giving this book a go as it seems to be the IT thriller of the summer. While I thought the plot was good and there are certainly no complaints about Sieger’s writing style, the first half of the book was just so slow. And I get it, the author was definitely trying to set the stage. But we kept hearing about the “Awful Thing That Happened” and how Emma “is a liar”, but it takes way too long for her involvement to come to fruition. Not only that, but both Emma and Vivian could have used more character development and I would have liked to “feel” more of their connection. There is clearly a connection between them; we get snippets of Emma’s absentee parents and are told that Vivian is an afterthought to her political parents, but it would have been nice to delve a little deeper into what made them connect. Maybe if more chapters were dedicated to the past, we could have gotten that, but I felt that most of the “past” story was very choppy and glossed over. The second half of the book definitely moved at a much quicker pace and I was furiously turning the pages, but honestly, I thought that there was way too much going on, especially as the story got closer to the end. Now, as far as the ending goes, it is certainly controversial. There are people who love it and some who hate. I didn’t mind it, I kind of liked it. All in all, I would recommend this book because even though it was an average read for me, there are so many 5 star reviews that I believe most people will love this book. Thank you to Penguin Publishing Group for my copy of this book via Edelweiss
the-traveling-inkwell More than 1 year ago
If you like campy horror movies and slasher films and haven't checked out Riley Sager's work yet ... what are you doing with your life? Final Girls was one of my most fun reads of 2017, and I was so excited to hear that Sager's follow-up novel, The Last Time I Lied, would be in a similar vein, this time tackling all the summer camp horror movie tropes you never knew you needed in thriller novel form. I loved our protagonist, Emma, and found myself so invested in her journey. She's such an intriguing main character, so thoroughly haunted by what happened in the past for reasons that aren't revealed until deep into the novel. Even though her coping mechanisms paint her as the tortured artist stuck in the past, she's a force to be reckoned with from page one. You can't help but root for her determination to face her demons and unveil the truth, even when subtlety is far from her specialty. I was also pleasantly surprised by the romantic plot line, which usually falls flat for me when it comes to thrillers. This time around, though, it wasn't in-your-face but still managed to keep me on the edge of my seat. The strongest part of the novel is the eerie and isolated atmosphere of the woods surrounding Camp Nightingale. It's the perfect backdrop for a mystery that will give you goosebumps. Sager refuses to shy from slasher movie stereotypes and even depends on them to evoke the cinematic visuals that bring his story to life. Somehow all the trope-y details like campfire ghost stories and the creepy groundskeeper never feel too cliché; they only build the suspense and add to the already spine-tingling mood. I especially loved the reoccurring motif of the Two Truths and a Lie game, which takes on unexpected significance and brings together so many different aspects of the storyline. It's so easy to immerse yourself in the atmosphere and see it all unfolding right in front of you. Sager is a master of the dual timeline. He nails it in Final Girls and goes above and beyond with The Last Time I Lied, too. Dual timelines are a favorite narrative device for me, but rarely does an author achieve such a cinematic presentation. Intrigue and suspense build simultaneously in the present and the past narratives, dropping hints that cross the border between the two. The threads crescendo in parallel, leading to a finale that's impossible to put down and far from the truth I expected. My only minor complaint is that I found the campers in Emma's cabins (both past and present) to be rather cookie cutter, except for Vivian, but it didn't at all detract from the aspects I loved about the rest of the book. If atmospheric, creepy, and cinematic novels are up your alley, you don't want to miss out on The Last Time I Lied. I'm already eagerly awaiting Sager's next novel ... he's yet to disappoint! Warm thanks to Riley Sager and Dutton for providing me with a digital copy in exchange for an honest review and to the Fantastic Flying Book Club for organizing the blog tour.
ASalt More than 1 year ago
“The Last Time I Lied” by Riley Sager follows Emma Davis, a twenty-eight year old painter who spends her days painting portraits of her three camp roommates—Vivian, Allison, and Natalie—who disappeared fifteen years ago, with Emma being the last to see them. Amidst the ongoing scandal and the accusations thrown at Theo, the camp owner’s son, the camp had closed down, even as the girls were never found. Flash forward to modern day and Fanny, the owner, wants to re-open the camp, inviting Emma to be one of the counselors. Still obsessed over the tragedy, Emma doesn’t want to go but needs the money, so agrees. This time she is sharing a bunk with three young women again—except this time they’re teenagers and she’s the grown up. And then the past repeats itself. I found the mystery to be intriguing, and the camp to be as much a character as the actual characters. There’s a dark past associated with it, and a general gothic atmosphere throughout the book. The narration goes back and forth between the present day and the events of fifteen years prior, leading up to the disappearance. Everyone is a suspect, including the main character herself, who kept me guessing as to whether she was an unreliable narrator or not. The overall propensity for the characters to lie and hide things about themselves added layers to the story, and I was unable to correctly guess the identity of the perpetrator. Overall, a twisty read.
nfam More than 1 year ago
A Summer Camp Nightmare Camp Nightingale is situated on Lake Midnight, on property owned by the Harris family for over a hundred years. The camp attracted wealthy girls. Emma Davis, 13 years old, doesn’t really want to go for the summer. She and her friends call it Camp Rich Bitch. It’s late when she and her parents arrive. All the cabins for younger girls are full, so she’s given the fourth bunk in a cabin with Vivian, Allison and Natalie. Vivian is the ring leader. She takes a liking to Emma, telling her she’ll be her older sister for the summer. Emma is trilled to be noticed by someone like Vivian and follows her lead in all things. Then a tragedy occurs. The three girls go missing and are never found. It’s a situation that has haunted Emma ever since. Now twenty-eight, Emma has a successful career as a painter, but when Franny Harris-White, decides to reopen Camp Midnight she agrees to become the painting instructor. It’s fifteen years later, but the tragedy still hangs over the camp. This is a real page turner. The author dribbles out the clues leading you ever deeper into the secrets of Camp Nightingale and the girls and staff from fifteen years ago. It’s a hard book to put down. Emma is a sympathetic character. You know her memories aren’t the whole story. There are things she’s not telling you about the past as she tries to solve the mystery of her cabin-mate’s disappearance, but it makes you root for her to tame her demons. If you’ve attended camp, or just like a good psychological thriller, you’re enjoy this book. I received this book from Penguin Random House for this review.