PositiveThe New York Times Book ReviewAs a prequel, Family of Liars has a difficult task — it needs to tap into the fervor of the original novel for returning readers, without confusing new ones. It’s a delicate dance, and Lockhart mostly pulls it off: Family offers insights into Beechwood and familiar characters, enriching understanding of the first book, but it never feels like a side dish to a We Were Liars entree ... In Carrie, Lockhart has crafted her most relatable Liars character yet ... But Family of Liars fumbles. Though Carrie is rendered vividly, the other denizens of Beechwood feel vague and indistinct. And the plot meanders, dropping characters and story lines for chapters at a time. That means some of the book’s big reveals land intellectually instead of emotionally. Still, I remained invested in Family of Liars even when it lagged because, having read We Were Liars, I anticipated that at some point a shocking twist would come. And, wow, does it ever.
RaveNew York Times Book ReviewSepetys expertly blends historical details into the story and shares archival photos at the back of the book, creating a tale that is as educational as it is thrilling. When you think the story is going to zig, it zags and makes you question everything, and everyone, anew. And that’s the power of I Must Betray You — it doesn’t just describe the destabilizing effects of being spied on; it will make you experience them too.