Skip to main content

Blog Tour | Lies Like Wildfire - Jennifer Lynn Alvarez

In Gap Mountain, California, everyone knows about fire season. And no one is more vigilant than 18-year-old Hannah Warner, the sheriff’s daughter and aspiring FBI agent. That is until this summer. When Hannah and her best friends accidentally spark an enormous and deadly wildfire, their instinct is to lie to the police and the fire investigators.

But as the blaze roars through their rural town and towards Yosemite National Park, Hannah’s friends begin to crack and she finds herself going to extreme lengths to protect their secret. Because sometimes good people do bad things. And if there’s one thing people hate, it’s liars.

Lies Like Wildfire had me gripped from page one. 

An opening where the protagonist is searching for a body? Tick. 

A friendship group facing their ultimate test? Tick. 

The threat of the police uncovering the truth on every page? Tick. 

It has everything you want from a gripping page-turner and is so fast-paced that I genuinely couldn't put it down. Meaning I read the whole thing in less than 24 hours - something which nowadays I very rarely do. 

Lies Like Wildfire follows Hannah, Mo, Drummond, Luke and Violet as they embark on their final summer of adventures before leaving their home of Gap Mountain for separate colleges. It's hot in California, the teenagers spend their days relaxing by the Gap (a body of water prefect for swimming and sunbathing), dreaming of college life and tighter in their friendship than ever before, until one argument starts a spark. A spark from a lighter. A spark from a lighter that then ignites the dry grass around them. That spreads to the land surrounding them. That begins the largest wildfire that Gap Mountain has seen in decades. 

Starting a wildfire in California is a crime - even accidentally - and the group instantly panic, attempting to conceal their tracks whilst raising the alarm with the authorities. Luke already has a criminal record: he can't go to jail for this. Hannah is the sheriff's daughter: she knows the consequences of a wildfire too well. The rest of the group equally have reputations at stake and so they make a pact to lie, to hide the truth whatever it may take. 

The wildfire spreads rapidly - burning through neighbouring towns and igniting Yosemite National Park before it is finally quelled. Yet their lies can't stop. Phones are destroyed, stories created as alibis, but the investigators continue to circle closer, seeking out the truth as the group's friendship faces the ultimate test.

Alvarez creates a pacey sense of peril throughout the story and the description of the fire burning through the landscape is horrific as the consequences of the teen's actions becomes clear. It's something that as a British individual I've seen so many times on the world news, but experiencing it in print really escalated the fear for me as you saw the damage unfold from page to page. 

As a reader, you watch the fire unfold as the friendship unfurls. Lies that started as a group pact  become lies within the group, truths are hidden and memories lost. The fear the teens have that their lives will be lost if they confess is prominent throughout, but ultimately spirals them closer and closer to the encircling law authorities. 

Just as it seems the teens are settling into their new way of life, ready to conceal the truth forever, Alvarez introduces another plot twist and an ending which left me gawping at my kindle and desperate to follow the group further to see whether the truth would ever catch up. 

Lies Like Wildfire is a brilliant story of friendship, flames and fear. I spent equal amounts of time afraid, in awe of the lies being told and desperate for justice to be served and these conflicting emotions make for a tumultuous read that you can't put down. 


Popular posts from this blog

Blog Tour | Instructions for Dancing - Nicola Yoon

  Evie is disillusioned about love ever since her dad left her mum for another woman - she's even throwing out her beloved romance novel collection. When she's given a copy of a book called Instructions for Dancing, and follows a note inside to a dilapidated dance studio, she discovers she has a strange and unwelcome gift. When a couple kisses in front of her, she can see their whole relationship play out - from the moment they first catch each other's eye to the last bitter moments of their break-up. For Evie, it confirms everything she thinks she knows about love - that it doesn't last. But at the dance studio she meets X - tall, dreadlocked, fascinating - and they start to learn to dance, together. Can X help break the spell that Evie is under? Can he change Evie's mind about love? It sounds like a love story but it isn't. Although love is a central theme in Instructions for Dancing it is there   without it becoming a smutty romance novel like those our

Blog Tour | The Meeting Point - Olivia Lara

  What if the Lift driver who finds your cheating boyfriend's phone holds the directions to true love? 'Who are you and why do you have my boyfriend's phone?’ 'He left it in my car. You must be the blonde in the red dress? I'm the Lift driver who dropped you two off earlier. And with these words, the life of the brunette and t-shirt wearing Maya Maas is turned upside down. Having planned to surprise her boyfriend, she finds herself single and stranded in an unknown city on her birthday. So when the mystery driver rescues Maya with the suggestion that she cheers herself up at a nearby beach town, she jumps at the chance to get things back on track. She wasn't expecting a personalised itinerary or the easy companionship that comes from opening up to a stranger via text, let alone the possibility it might grow into something more... Before I picked this up, I hadn't read a romance in about five years. I used to love a good romance, but like with

Blog Tour | The Cousins - Karen M. McManus

The Storys are the envy of their neighbours: owners of the largest property on their East Coast island, they are rich, beautiful, and close. Until it all falls apart. The four children are suddenly dropped by their mother with a single sentence: You know what you did. They never hear from her again. Years later, when 18-year-old cousins Aubrey, Milly and Jonah Story receive a mysterious invitation to spend the summer at their grandmother’s resort, they have no choice but to follow their curiosity and meet the woman who’s been such an enigma their entire lives. This entire family is built on secrets, right? It’s the Story legacy. This summer, the teenagers are determined to discover the truth at the heart of their family. But some secrets are better left alone. Karen McManus, author of One Of Us Is Lying and One Of Us Is Next , is back with another YA thriller packed full of twists and turns throughout. When the opportunity to be part of this Write Reads tour came into my inbox I knew