I first saw the cover of the second book in this series, Deadly Little Scandals, and was totally intrigued. I went to read the synopsis of this one and immediately went to Overdrive, where, lo and behold, the audiobook was waiting for me. I snatched it up immediately.
Title: Little White Lies (Debutantes, #1)
Author: Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Genres: YA Mystery
Eighteen-year-old auto mechanic Sawyer Taft did not expect her estranged grandmother to show up at her apartment door and offer her a six-figure contract to participate in debutante season. And she definitely never imagined she would accept. But when she realizes that immersing herself in her grandmother’s “society” might mean discovering the answer to the biggest mystery of her life-her father’s identity-she signs on the dotted line and braces herself for a year of makeovers, big dresses, bigger egos, and a whole lot of bless your heart. The one thing she doesn’t expect to find is friendship, but as she’s drawn into a group of debutantes with scandalous, dangerous secrets of their own, Sawyer quickly discovers that her family isn’t the only mainstay of high society with skeletons in their closet. There are people in her grandmother’s glittering world who are not what they appear, and no one wants Sawyer poking her nose into the past. As she navigates the twisted relationships between her new friends and their powerful parents, Sawyer’s search for the truth about her own origins is just the beginning.
Set in the world of debutante balls, grand estates and rolling green hills, Little White Lies combines a charming setting, a classic fish-out-of-water story, and the sort of layered mystery only author Jennifer Lynn Barnes can pull off.
What a ride! This premise had me immediately interested—auto mechanic-turned debutante, twisty relationships, finding a mysterious father. It’s everything I could ever want. Not only that, but this book totally exceeded my expectations.
This book is fast-paced and covers nine months. It’s told in alternating point of views; the first pov is from a police officer who is confused as to why there are four debutantes in his holding cell, and the other is from Sawyer Taft, the auto mechanic-turned debutante. I loved this format, because it had me asking WHY the girls were in the jail cell the entire time. But Sawyer’s pov is just as exciting.
When Sawyer’s grandmother offers her $500,000 to be a debutante and the chance to find her father, obviously she can’t say no. She expects to half-hardheartedly join in on the debutante festivities, but she’s instantly embroiled in a series of scandals and broken laws, thanks to her newfound cousin and her best friend. The mystery of Sawyer’s father is also a fun plot line, and at the end, everything joins together in the best way.
And the twist at the end had my jaw hanging. I cannot wait for the second book. This was such a fun ride of a book.
I adored Sawyer Taft from the start. She’s hilarious, irreverent, and doesn’t take BS from anyone. She’s also dead-determined to find her father, despite her mother not wanting her to find out all her life. I was immediately on board with her, and once I’d finished the book, I knew I was still on board for the next one.
One thing I was not expecting out of this book was the wonderful relationships that Sawyer would make. I haven’t read too many debutante books, but the ones I have read were full of catty, petty teenage girls too obsessed with themselves to really see the big picture. This isn’t true at all for this book. Each female character is complex and interesting. If I hated them at one point, I eventually loved them when I understood their motives.
And the female friendships are SO GOOD! They are so empowering. They become complicated at times, but they always work out.
I would highly recommend the audiobook. The narrator has an amazing southern accent that made this book even better. The way she voices all of the characters was fantastic. This is definitely one of my favorite audiobooks right now, and I would totally listen to it again.
I loved this book so much. Books like these make me seriously question why I read so much fantasy—I really need to branch out more. This book is just hilarious and fantastic and So. Much. Fun. I could not get enough, and I’m super excited that the second book, Deadly Little Scandals, is coming out November 5. I will be snatching that book up so quick. I would highly, highly recommend to anyone who needs something fun and interesting to read.