Lies that Bind by Diana Rodriguez Wallach


Lies that Bind by Diana Rodriguez Wallach

Published: March 6th 2018 by Entangled Teen

The Italian Job meets Bourne Identity meets Spy Kids in this sequel to Proof of Lies.

What if saving yourself meant destroying everyone you love?

Still reeling from everything she learned while searching for her sister in Italy, Anastasia Phoenix is ready to call it quits with spies. Then she and her friends learn that Marcus’s—her kinda boyfriend—brother, Antonio, has also gone missing. Luckily, they track down Antonio in a fiery festival in England, only to learn he has been working for the enemy, Department D, the whole time. But Antonio wants out. And so does Anastasia.

But before any of them can leave espionage and their parents’ crimes behind them, a close friend turns up dead. No one is safe, not while Department D still exists. So Anastasia and her friends embark on a dangerous plan to bring down an entire criminal empire, using every Dresden Kid they can find.

As their world becomes surrounded by spies, and the children of spies, Anastasia starts to question who she can really trust. Including her best friends…

NOTE: I received an ARC copy of this book from the publisher for an honest review. This in no way influences my opinion.

Lies that Bind is the sequel to Proof of Lies in the Anastasia Phoenix series. I read the first book a while back and really enjoyed it, so I was ecstatic when the publisher reached out and offered to send an ARC of this book ass well. However, for me, this book suffered from second book blues and I ultimately ended up DNFing it.

This book starts off where the previous on leaves off. Not a lot of time has elapsed between the two, so it was easy to keep track of what had happened in between books and where the characters are now. There were also plenty of reminders about what had happened in book one, so I didn’t need to struggle to remember what had happened previously, which I found to be a bonus.

However, I didn’t connect to this story as I had to the first book. There was no hook that really kept me interested and I often found myself putting the book down and doing something else. It felt extremely repetitive in the way in which the characters were acting and what they were saying and it really put me off wanting to read it because it felt like points kept being rehashed where they didn’t need to be.

Another issue I had with this book was that the plot was slow. I got up to about 25% of the way though and nothing had really happened. The plot itself was slow and it just appeared to be a lot of back and fourth arguments about what they were going to do next. It didn’t seem to be going anywhere and it failed to keep me only toes in the way in which book one did.

I also didn’t connect with Anastasia like I did in book 1. She came across as relatively whiny and it really felt like she had taken a step backward in the character development department. I struggled to care about what was going to happen to her in the long run, which impacted how I connected to the story as a whole. The way in which she started to call all the decisions and didn’t even stop to consider what anyone else had to say irritated me.

Anthony was also a dislikable character to me. His whole personality grated only nerves and I really just wanted to punch him every time he spoke. I struggled to even trust him and I didn’t really care about seeing things from his perspective because of the way in which he treated other characters.

All in all, I was disappointed with this book. It didn’t hold the same spark that hame hooked in book one and the plot and character development was sorely lacking. I gave this book 1/5 stars.

Proof of Lies by Diana Rodriguez Wallach


Proof of Lies by Diana Rodriguez Wallach

Expected Publication: March 7th 2017 by Entangled Teen

Some secrets are best kept hidden… 

Anastasia Phoenix has always been the odd girl out, whether moving from city to international city with her scientist parents or being the black belt who speaks four languages.

And most definitely as the orphan whose sister is missing, presumed dead.

She’s the only one who believes Keira is still alive, and when new evidence surfaces, Anastasia sets out to follow the trail—and lands in the middle of a massive conspiracy. Now she isn’t sure who she can trust. At her side is Marcus, the bad boy with a sexy accent who’s as secretive as she is. He may have followed her to Rome to help, but something about him seems too good to be true.

Nothing is as it appears, and when everything she’s ever known is revealed to be a lie, Anastasia has to believe in one impossibility.

She will find her sister.

Note: I received an ARC of this book via Netgalley. This in no way influences my opinion.

As soon as I saw the cover and the blurb of this on Netgalley, I knew I had to read it! It is a book that is right up my alley because I love trying to figure out who did what, who we can trust etc. This book most definitely did not let me down and I was left turning the pages trying to figure out everything!

I really liked Anastasia from the beginning.  She is definitely a character I felt like I could empathise with and she reacted in a complete human way when she lost her parents and then her sister. I got her not wanting to believe that her sister was dead – because that would have meant that she lost her entire family. I love the fact that she had unwavering faith throughout the book that her sister was alive. It was easy to understand why she felt guilty in the places and circumstances that she did!

I also really liked her sister, despite the fact that we didn’t get to see much of her – only hear what she is like through third person – and the fact that she made mistakes along the way. She was also really easy to empathise with and I actually felt really sorry for her! One minute she is enjoying life at pre med school and the next she is a guardian to her sister. I get that she wants to let loose in some form or another and I understand why she, in some respects, resented her sister. She is only human, after all!

The plot of this book was really different! At first we are following a very normal police investigation and the reader already thinks they know who took Kiera. However, the book very quickly becomes something out of conspiracy theories and it took a completely different twist! It kept me on my toes trying to figure things out! I will say that I didn’t trust the man who everyone trusted in the beginning and my spidey senses were correct!

I do feel like some of the plot was sometimes difficult to follow – I think maybe there was too many theories going on all at the same time and the information overload to my brain just didn’t go well… plus I was really tired but I also really wanted to know what was going to happen next! The plot was definitely something that you would only ever find in fiction… or the minds of the people who, in fact, create conspiracy theorists!

I also loved the fact that the author left a little section at the end with the actual truth of what happened. The author uses the assassination of an Italian Prime Minister within this book, but she changed it ever so slightly to fit the needs of the book – as it is full of conspiracy theories anyway! (If you are interested in more about this, the Prime Minister was Aldo Moro). She also provided the truth about Disinformation and D Departments.

All in all, I really enjoyed myself reading this book! It went in a complete different direction than I was expecting and the plot was really unique! It was sometimes difficult to keep up with the theories, so I gave this book 4/5 stars!