“One of Us is Next” by Karen M. McManus a murder mystery novel

One of Us is Next by Karen M. McManus, a mystery thriller fiction novel.

Anna Pham, Staff Writer

“One of Us is Next” by Karen M. McManus, a mystery thriller fiction novel.

Anna Pham, Staff Writer

If you are into true crime and love a good murder mystery this story might just be for you. Karen M. McManus released her first fiction novel called “One of Us is Lying,” her book ended up being New York Times #1 bestseller. She then came back with a sequel called, “One of Us is Next,” that was released in the year of 2020 just a few years after her first book release in 2017

McManus’ first book, “One of Us is Lying” storyline follows four students, Bronwyn, Addy, Nate, and Cooper, and their individual perspectives as suspects for the murder of their classmate Simon Kelleher. While each chapter showcases each individual character and their background information, you also learn what secrets they might be hiding throughout the story and how they deal with it being publicized from Simon Kelleher’s gossip app called “About That.” McManus’ next book, “One of Us is Next,” takes place in the same high school called Bayview High. This time the perspective is taken place by three students named Phoebe, Knox. and Maeve, who is also Bronwyn’s younger sister.

The drama throughout Bayview High continues with many students creating copycat gossip apps based off of Simon Kellehers’ “About That” app. However this time, the source of students’ secrets that many fear being released are through a game of Truth or Dare that are sent through text messages from a mysterious phone number. One student throughout Bayview High is tasked to pick either a dangerous dare or face the consequences of revealing a truth about their deepest darkest secrets to the whole school.

It is later found out that a questionable dare made by a student at Bayview High led them to their death and many questions to come up. This starts the investigation between the main characters of this book to work together and find out the mastermind of these mysterious text messages and put an end to this threatening game.

This book has many jaw dropping plot twists and turns, specifically, the ending where they explain how everything unfolds and why certain things took place up to a certain point. It is highly recommended for readers who are interested in mysteries and drama. This book will keep your brain thinking and constantly questioning whether or not a new character is the secret mastermind behind it all. Not only does this book take you on an adventure throughout their high school experience but it gives you a close up on each character’s individual lives and backstories of the hardships they faced growing up. This really created a personal feeling to each of the students and makes you realize that they are just teenagers trying to graduate high school, but are forced to deal with unwanted drama from their families and peers. Some readers may find this book relatable as well, as it discusses family loss and chronic illness throughout the story. There is also a TV series of “One of Us is Lying” that you can find on the streaming service Peacock to watch if you are interested.