BOOK REVIEW: The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager


Title: The Last Time I Lied
Author: Riley Sager
Publication: April 2, 2019
Publisher: Dutton
Genre: Suspense, Thriller, Mystery
Pages: 400

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SYNOPSIS: (From Goodreads)

Fifteen years ago, summer camper Emma Davis watched sleepily as her three cabin mates snuck out of their cabin in the dead of night. The last she–and 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 NYC art scene, Emma turns her past into paintings.. They catch the attention of Francesca Harris-White, the socialite and wealthy owner of the very same Camp Nightingale–and when Francesca implores Emma to return to the camp as a painting counselor, Emma sees an opportunity to find closure and move on.

Yet, it is immediately clear that all is not right at Camp Nightingale. Already haunted by surfacing memories, Emma is suddenly plagued by a security camera pointed directly at her cabin, mounting mistrust from Francesca, and, most disturbing of all, cryptic clues Vivian apparently left behind about the camp’s twisted origins. And as history begins to repeat itself and three girls go missing again, Emma must face threats from both man and nature in order to uncover all the buried secrets–including what really happened all those years ago.


As a huge fan of Riley Sager, I am slowly working my way through all his books I haven’t read. The Last Time I Lied jumped out at me on audio and I thought I would make this my next feat. While I loved it, I had to come back to it after taking a break.

The Last Time I Lied follows Emma as she returns to Camp Nightingale where she went as a child and her three cabin-mates disappeared never to be seen again. There were a lot of twists in this book and Sager definitely gave me a lot of suspects to be suspicious of. I was constantly questioning people’s motives and more. I loved the new campers that Emma got paired with and how they seemed to bond with her. I feel like this pulled her out of her shell.

I had a few issues with this book. The back and forth between past and present got a little confusing at times. Especially listening to it. I had to remember which characters were in which time and try to keep up that way. Also, I felt the story took a while to get to the “good stuff”. There wasn’t a lot of high dramatic scenes I would expect from Sager after reading previous books. These moments bring the suspense of the novel up. I felt these were lacking in the first half of the book.

With that said, the second half of the book and mostly that last part was filled with suspense and drama and so many questions. I was so confused as to who the bad guy was I was ready for it to be just about anyone. Sager knows how to end with a bang. Even when you thought it was over… there was more!

While this book isn’t my favorite Sager novel, I still enjoyed it and will be looking for my next Riley Sager read now.

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