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One Tiny Lie: K.A. Tucker

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Livie has always been the stable one of the two Cleary sisters, handling her parents' tragic death and Kacey's self-destructive phase with strength and maturity. But underneath that exterior is a little girl hanging onto the last words her father ever spoke to her. “Make me proud,” he had said. She promised she would...and she’s done her best over the past seven years with every choice, with every word, with every action.

Livie walks into Princeton with a solid plan, and she’s dead set on delivering on it: Rock her classes, set herself up for medical school, and meet a good, respectable guy that she’s going to someday marry. What isn’t part of her plan are Jell-O shots, a lovable, party animal roommate she can’t say ‘no’ to, and Ashton, the gorgeous captain of the men’s rowing team. Definitely him. He’s an arrogant ass who makes Livie’s usually non-existent temper flare and everything she doesn’t want in a guy. Worse, he’s best friends and roommates with Connor, who happens to fits Livie’s criteria perfectly. So why does she keep thinking about Ashton?

As Livie finds herself facing mediocre grades, career aspirations she no longer thinks she can handle, and feelings for Ashton that she shouldn’t have, she’s forced to let go of her last promise to her father and, with it, the only identity that she knows.



"Livie I think you are completely fucked up."

One Tiny Lie picks up with an older version of Livie heading off to experience her first year of college. Kacey is concerned that her sister hasn't really dealt with their tragic past, in her mind Livie is a ticking bomb waiting to explode. She feels that Livie is excessively perfect and out of concern for her sister, she contacts the one and only Dr. Stayner. Kacey's concerns are valid. Livie lives her life in a manner that doesn't allow room for chaos or the display of true emotion; everything has its order and must be ruled with strict control. Livie is always stuck inside that head of hers analyzing every decision she makes, due to this she tends to travel the road safest, never stepping outside her comfort zone. However, Stayner and Kacey have other plans, and those plans have Livie blurring so many different lines and finally experiencing life to it's fullest. Stayner suggests assignments that will challenge and encourage Livie to lighten her release over that control and live outside the box.

If you remember correctly, Stayner tends to run a bit eccentric with his therapy. Therefore, prepare yourself since there is absolutely nothing normal about the directives he uses with Livie. His approaches will seem insane and unreal. I found myself shaking my head and thinking what the f***.  Stayner's methods may not have been perfect or normal but that was his ultimate goal. Livie needed to learn that being flawed is normal. In the end he wanted her to realize that it's ok not to be perfect, to live life and make mistakes along the way, and finally accept all the good and bad on this journey we call life.

"Life has a funny way of creating its own tests. It throws curve balls that make you do and think and feel things that are in direct conflict with what you had planned and don't allow you to operate in terms of black and white."

Enter Ashton and Connor. Within her first few days on campus, Livie has managed to catch the attention of these two very different (as night and day) guys. The first, Ashton, has her questioning her control and sends her senses soaring with emotions she has never experienced before while the other, Connor, leaves her feeling safe and fits more complete inside her comfort zone. Ashton and Connor cause quite the pickle for Livie, as she suddenly finds herself with decisions she has never had to entertain before. Does she follow her heart or her brain? Can she afford the risk of losing her precious control over the bad boy who can charm the panties off any girl or does she take the instinctual safe road with the good boy she knows her parents would definitely approve of.

I may be in the minority here, but I wasn't fond of Connor. It wasn't that I didn't like him because I did. His character just didn't move me or blow my mind. I didn't find this to be much of a love triangle and there was no indecision for me when it came to getting the girl. The answer to that was plain as day. Yes, Connor was the sweet hot Irish guy who could give Livie everything...marriage, the house with a white picket fence and 2.5 kids, but other than that, he didn't offer much more in my opinion. Connor was the safe bet and that's the thing...there was nothing special about him other than he was SAFE. He didn't make Livie feel. Conner didn't challenge her or set her free. She didn't feel that soul shattering love when she looked at him.

“The only thing I regret is that it ever ended. And I'm the one who's jealous. Insanely so.”

Now Ashton, he was so far from perfect, but that boy evoke all kinds of emotions in Livie (and me). His secret and hidden past and broken present has the reader believing that he is a careless playboy, except underneath those layers is a man who uses certain behaviors to keep anyone from truly knowing him and getting too close. Ashton was a frustrating mix of deliciousness and asshole. Everything about him challenged Livie and I loved that he was caring and supportive when you least expected him to be. Our bad boy had many layers to him, and Liv had this way of getting underneath them to expose the "real" Ash. Our heroine and hero worked, everything about them shouted soul mate. The sparks between them flew each and every time they were in the same vicinity of one another only intensifying their chemistry. At first glance, anyone would assume Aston and Livie were bad for each other, especially since they were a huge ball of complications. Nothing is as it seems with them. Their relationship was a roller coaster of emotions and actions, some breathtaking while others were angsty and exasperating. Between the hot and cold mixed signals, stolen emotionally and physically charged moments, thoughtful actions, push and pull, and cheating I couldn't decide if I wanted to sigh with happiness or throw my tablet in anger. To say
I had a major love/hate relationship with both of them is an understatement. 
 
“Irish, if there’s one thing I’ve never been able to forget, it’s a single second with you. Because you're not a one-night girl, Irish. You're my forever girl."”

Ashton and Livie are very much the same person, broken and lost. Both tend to micromanage the fate of their lives while holding others at bay, just in different ways. Ash uses sex and girls to mask the real reasons for his behavior, while Liv makes sure everything around her has it's perfect place including her emotions by never stepping outside her comfort. What started out as a personal journey of growth for Liv, also turned out to be one for Ash too. They ended up challenging each other, pushing one another to look past the surface to find the answers to some of life's hardest questions. Will Ashton and Livie be able to move past the secrets and betrayals that stand in the way of their happily ever after?

Their story will frustrate you to no end, it will leave you breathless, angry, and hopeful. One Tiny Lie will draw you in from the very first moment and have you hanging there all the way to the end. I absolutely adored Ashton and Livie, even more so than Kacey and Trent.


Thank you Atria Books and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review One Tiny Lie in exchange for my honest opinion.

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