Dark and Shallow Lies – Ginny Myers Sain – ARC Review

Title: Dark and Shallow Lies
: Ginny Myers Sain
Genre: YA, Mystery/Thriller, Supernatural
: August 31st, 2021 (Razorbill)

Synopsis: A teen girl disappears from her small town deep in the bayou, where magic festers beneath the surface of the swamp like water rot, in this chilling debut supernatural thriller for fans of Natasha Preston, Karen McManus, and Rory Power.

La Cachette, Louisiana, is the worst place to be if you have something to hide.

This tiny town, where seventeen-year-old Grey spends her summers, is the self-proclaimed Psychic Capital of the World–and the place where Elora Pellerin, Grey’s best friend, disappeared six months earlier.

Grey can’t believe that Elora vanished into thin air any more than she can believe that nobody in a town full of psychics knows what happened. But as she digs into the night that Elora went missing, she begins to realize that everybody in town is hiding something – her grandmother Honey; her childhood crush Hart; and even her late mother, whose secrets continue to call to Grey from beyond the grave.

When a mysterious stranger emerges from the bayou – a stormy-eyed boy with links to Elora and the town’s bloody history – Grey realizes that La Cachette’s past is far more present and dangerous than she’d ever understood. Suddenly, she doesn’t know who she can trust. In a town where secrets lurk just below the surface, and where a murderer is on the loose, nobody can be presumed innocent–and La Cachette’s dark and shallow lies may just rip the town apart.

Thank you to the publisher, PenguinTeen Canada for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Grey returns to the remote bayou town of La Cachette, Louisiana, where she always spends her summers with her grandmother. But this year is different. Her best friend, Elora, has been missing for the past six months ever since she seemingly disappeared into thin air one night, and no one in the entire town of psychics has been able to figure out what happened to her. Even worse, Grey has been experiencing strange visions that seem to be flashbacks and she’s sure they are connected to Elora’s disappearance. Determined to find out the truth, Grey begins to dig deeper into the events of that night, only to find that everyone in town is keeping secrets, from her oldest friends, to her grandmother and even her late mother. The mystery thickens as a stranger suddenly appears on the edge of town with connections to the town’s dark history and Grey realizes La Cachette has more buried secrets than she ever knew, and all of it somehow ties into the events at hand.

Supernatural themes are not something I usually enjoy, but combined with a thriller, I just couldn’t resist trying this one out. With how well written and executed this book was, I could hardly believe that it is a debut novel! The setting of the Louisiana bayou was amazing and provided the perfect backdrop for this story. There were quite a few supernatural elements especially with everyone in town having some form of psychic power, but I thought it was just the right amount, believable even, and I enjoyed it, despite the aspect not being a particular favorite of mine. Combined with some local culture and legends, this was easily the most atmospheric book I’ve read all year.

The characters were interesting enough, but honestly, my focus was entirely on the plot and 400+ pages just flew by in no time at all. It was fascinating how so many of the events in the town’s history were interconnected and woven into the character’s lives, particularly Grey and I was very impressed with how this was handled. The story was narrated entirely through Grey’s perspective, including the flashbacks and despite the frequent jumps, it was easy to follow. The only thing I wish had been done better was Zale, whose character should have been expanded a little more, as despite his major role in the story, his character felt somewhat detached from the plot.

The ending itself was as spectacular as expected, keeping the reader on tenterhooks until the last moment. The mystery was quite hard to figure out and personally, I didn’t find any real hints until near the 80% mark and in a debut novel, this is definitely worthy of praise. This is one book that should definitely be on your TBR this fall, particularly for fans of thrillers or mysteries. It was a fantastic read and I would highly recommend it!

Dark and Shallow Lies releases on August 31st, 2021.

Do you plan to read this book? Let me know in the comments below!
All quotes in this review were taken from an advance reader’s edition and may differ from the final version of the book.


18 thoughts on “Dark and Shallow Lies – Ginny Myers Sain – ARC Review

  1. readandreviewit1 August 17, 2021 / 2:07 pm

    Great review! I’m so excited for this release – the combination of the supernatural and mysteries is so intriguing – and I’m so glad to hear that the ending was brilliant too, that can really make or break a book! Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. J (Midnight Book Blog) August 17, 2021 / 3:54 pm

    Wow, it’s amazing when a 400 page book can go quickly! I love genre mashups so a supernatural thriller sounds perfect for me

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Kaya @ afictionalbookworm August 17, 2021 / 8:27 pm

    i wasn’t sure about this one but your review’s sold me! this sounds like the perfect mix of supernatural and mystery. great review!💜

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Fadima Mooneira August 18, 2021 / 7:39 am

    This book has a pretty cover design. I’m not into this kinda genre. But I do believe that this book is a good read. Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Jodie | That Happy Reader August 19, 2021 / 9:41 am

    I love discovering new great authors and it sounds like you have! Although this is not my genre, I do have several in my life that would love to read this book. Thanks for sharing another great review!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sarah August 19, 2021 / 2:02 pm

    This sounds really intriguing! I love the setting for it. It’s also nice when a mystery keeps you guessing for most of the book and it’s a surprise at the end!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Molly @ Transatlantic Notes August 19, 2021 / 2:47 pm

    The elements of the supernatural, being a thriller and where the story is set; make this book sound like something I would really enjoy reading — almost perfect for Halloween! I have not read this author before, do they have other books you’d recommend?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Raji (@journeyintofantasy) August 22, 2021 / 5:28 pm

      Hope you enjoy it, this would definitely be a perfect book for Halloween! This is actually the author’s debut novel, but I’m really looking forward to seeing what she writes next!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Miriam Elen August 20, 2021 / 4:39 am

    Wow – the cover for this book is beautifully eye catching, and the synopsis as well as your review has sold me on it! I’m not usually into dark stories but I will be giving this one a go…

    Liked by 2 people

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