Geek Book Review: The Color of Lies by C.J. Lyons

The best lies always begin in the truth.

Ella Cleary has a rare ability: she could see colors that reveal people’s true emotions. Her world is set on taking care of her grandmother who has the same rare medical condition. Her dream of traveling around the world just a fantasy. But when a young journalist named Alec Ravenell appeared claiming that the death of her parents was no accident, Ella must find out the truth. But can she trust Alec when, unlike any other people, she can’t see his emotions, and in the process, his real intentions?

Writers of YA novels are getting creative nowadays. There’s a death app where you would know when you will die, Facebook in 1996, or some weird new disease. In the case of C.J. Lyon’s “The Color of Lies,” the main character has a rare medical condition called synesthesia that scrambles the senses.

Ella Cleary has the ability to see colors that reveal people’s true emotions. Her whole family has synesthesia, though in different manifestations. As you can imagine, this condition puts Ella on the “not normal kid” tribe in school. It was a burden but something that will come in handy when a guy named Alec appeared one day claiming that her dead parents were murdered.

There’s are twists and turns during Ella and Alec’s investigation. Ella’s ability here makes the story more interesting than your regular mystery novel. There are loopholes in the story that Lyon tried to explain away, but rather unconvincingly. The plot is somewhat obvious from the start and has a TV drama flavor in it. If not for the synesthesia thing, this book would just belong to the ordinary novels section.

Geek Rate

Geek Rate: Mortal Worthy (3 out of 5 stars). Ella’s rare ability was sufficiently used throughout the story, but it was not used well. The Chapters switched perspectives from Ella to Alec. The two do not have the flair YA characters usually have, but their narrations are interesting especially Alec’s investigation. Overall, The Color of Lies is a unique reading experience.

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