One of Us is Next by Karen McManus

The highly anticipated sequel to One of Us Is Lying! There's a new mystery to solve at Bayview High, and there's a whole new set of rules.

Come on, Bayview, you know you've missed this.

A ton of copycat gossip apps have popped up since Simon died, but in the year since the Bayview four were cleared of his shocking death, no one's been able to fill the gossip void quite like he could. The problem is no one has the facts. 

Until now. 

This it's not an app, though—it's a game. 

Truth or Dare.

Phoebe's the first target. If you choose not to play, it's a truth. And hers is dark. 

Then comes Maeve, and she should know better—always choose the dare. 

But by the time Knox is about to be tagged, things have gotten dangerous. The dares have become deadly, and if Maeve learned anything from Bronwyn last year, it's that they can't count on the police for help. Or protection.

Simon's gone, but someone's determined to keep his legacy at Bayview High alive. And the rules have changed.

What I thought

So, I closed One of Us is Lying (check out my review here) and immediately opened the pages of One of Us is Next, eager to know what was going to happen to the Bayview Four in McManus’ sequel to the bestselling novel. The first book had me hooked, line and sinker.

I love that we’re introduced to some new characters alongside the original Bayview Four. It made One of Us is Next a more interesting and engaging read. The new characters bring something fresh to the table, and there’s some great character development where they’re concerned, especially Bronwyn’s younger sister Maeve who we met in the first book, and who is older and more mature in the follow-up.

Overall, One of Us is Next is enjoyable, but I didn’t find the storyline as compelling as the first book. It took me a bit longer to digest and was harder to navigate this one. I found the characters, as varied as they were, more challenging to connect with in part one of the book.

However, part two, around the 200-page mark, is where the pace really started to pick up for me, so definitely stick with it since things do start to get more intriguing from there on out. Maeve held things together for me, and was the most interesting of all the characters, so I’m glad she remained strong throughout the book.

The ending was fantastic… those final few chapters definitely had me holding my breath.

I look forward to checking out some of Karen McManus’ other books, as well as adding the third and final installment, One of Us is Back, hitting shelves in 2023, to my TBR. I’m keen to know where the author will take things.

Fans of Pretty Little Liars, Gossip Girl, and similar shows will certainly enjoy Karen’s books.

Karen M. McManus earned her BA in English from the College of the Holy Cross and her MA in journalism from Northeastern University. She is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of One of Us Is Lying, its sequel One of Us Is Next, Two Can Keep a Secret and The Cousins. Her work has been published in more than 40 languages. To learn more about Karen and her books, visit her website or follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

One of Us is Next is available in hardcover format from Indigo and in e-book format on Kobo. Check Penguin Random House Canada for additional retailers.