“One of Us is Next” and Why Agatha Can’t be Trusted

A year has passed since the Bayview 4 and Simon Kelleher were front-page news. Simon’s gossip app is gone and Bayview High is finding its new normal until a new game starts… Truth or Dare. If you choose not to play, your darkest secrets come to light. The dares get more dangerous as the game goes on. . . and deadly.

I LOVED “One of Us is Lying” by Karen M. McManus. It was “The Breakfast Club” meets “Pretty Little Liars.” It was the first YA novel to suck me in to the story in a long time so much so, I used for my book club. Everyone loved it, even those who don’t read YA. Needless to say, I was thrilled for a sequel! I loved checking in with the old characters and getting to know some new characters, all in the midst of a dangerous game of Truth or Dare. Karen M. McManus really understands the teen brain that makes crazy choices and longs for notoriety and acceptance, popularity, and those characters that are just trying to survive.

Though I still prefer the first novel, I really enjoyed getting to know Maeve, Bronwyn’s younger sister. Her wit and insight shines in this novel.

“This is what happens when you’re bad at making friends: you end up with ones you don’t particularly like.”

I definitely recommend this book, especially after reading “One of Us is Lying,” and don’t let the YA label put you off. It is a read that transcends the genre.

3.5 Stars

Throughout the book, I kept seeing the shadow of Simon Kelleher from “One of Us is Lying.” His desire for revenge, his enjoyment of hurting other people, his drive for popularity echoes in this book. And his death kept coming up. In the first book he dies from an allergic reaction to peanuts. (Don’t worry, it’s not really a spoiler as it happens almost page 1.) But I was so sad for him, and all peanut allergy sufferers because I love peanut butter. I was reminded of my mother’s peanut butter cookies. They are the perfect crunchy cookie. I made these with crunchy peanut butter for an extra crunch.

Of course I was short on a couple of items and placed another quick grocery delivery. I absolutely love the ease of ordering groceries and not having to lug them up the stairs myself. They come in those single use plastic bags that are terrible for the environment, but great for litter disposal bags so I always keep them. But, my calico Agatha absolutely LOVES plastic bags and CANNOT BE TRUSTED with them, so I try to put them out of the way as quickly as possible. This time I lost the battle.

She is such a silly cat. Anyone else’s cat have a bizarre obsession with plastic bags?

Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies from my mom


½ c Shortening

½ c Peanut Butter

½ c sugar

½ c packed brown sugar

1 egg

1 ¼ c all purpose flour

½ tsp baking powder

¾ tsp baking soda

¼ tsp salt


Mix first 5 ingredients thoroughly. Stir remaining ingredients together in separate bowl and mix into peanut butter mixture until it comes together. Chill dough for at least 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°. Roll dough into balls the size of a large walnut. Place 3” apart on lightly greased baking sheet. Flatten with a fork dipped in flour to make the crisscross pattern. Bake 10-12 min or until set but not hard. Yields approximately 2 ½ dozen cookies.

Published by Aprile

An passionate reader, amateur baker, aspiring writer, and professional cat lady.

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