Review: The Truth and Lies of Ella Black (Emily Barr)

Title: The Truth and Lies of Ella Black

Author: Emily Barr

Publisher: Penguin Random House

Release: January 2018

Genre: Thriller, contemporary

Which animal is similar to this book? To me, this book is pretty similar to a female hyena. And yes, the female part of it is important. See, female hyenas are amazing and very misunderstood; people think they’re insane and aggressive and dangerous. This isn’t the case although there have been cases of them doing some pretty questionable things, but this is because they’re programmed for survival. Even in films and books, they’re portrayed as insane and cruel, which to me is very similar to Ella in the story. In the same way, both aren’t actually this way and both are clever, and only doing what they feel they have to. The book itself is thoughtful and beautiful, the same as a female hyena.

The blurb says: I call her Bella because she is the dark side of me. It’s Ella but not. It’s Bad Ella. Bella. I thought of that a few years ago and it made it a bit better because before that I called it the Monster. Anything is a tiny bit better when it has a name. Bella is better than the Monster. Bella is desperate to own the whole of me: I am alert and battling it all the time. Sometimes I have to let her out before everything explodes, but after that happens I feel calm and peaceful and, I think, kind of happy. 

Okay so this book is amazing and definitely a must-read for anyone who loves mystery and thrillers. I adored The One Memory of Flora Banks so had to read this, and I’m so glad I did. I think this is going to be my favourite book of 2018; it’s just so different to things I usually read. It’s exciting and intriguing and it feels dangerous and scary.

This book is so dark and so emotional, and you will feel very much in defense of Ella throughout the story. Emily Barr is a genius and manages to write a story filled with stressful moments and terrifying scenarios whilst still making the reader fall very much in love with her characters. It’s told from Ella’s point of view and it’s done so well that it’s super interesting to see her emotions progress and to see how this affects her state of mind.

The story itself is fast-paced, similarly to Flora Banks, and keeps you on your toes; I love books like this and found this particular one very near impossible to put down. I sped through this very quickly and adored every minute of it. If you haven’t read Flora Banks, you should and if you like that, you will love this. Definitely buy it, you won’t regret it!

I’m giving it a solid 10 out of 10 paw prints from us and I can’t wait for it to be released!