Reader Reviewed The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge

The Lie Tree

Written by Frances Hardinge

13+ readers   Costa Children's Book Award 2015   All Shortlists and Winners   Carnegie Greenaway   YA readers   Julia Eccleshare's Picks   UKLA 2016   eBooks   
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The Lovereading4Kids comment

Winner of the UKLA 2016 Book Award in the 12 - 16 year old category.

WINNER of the 2015 COSTA BOOK OF THE YEAR and Winner of the Costa Children's Book Award Award-winning Frances Hardinge is spellbinding is this hugely entertaining and dramatic Victorian thriller. When Faith’s father dies suddenly she knows she must try to find out exactly what he was hiding in the local caves she had recently visited with him. Discovering the extraordinary Lie Tree which thrives off hearing lies and, in turn, reveals secrets long kept hidden Faith begins to uncover a web of secrets and mysteries that will change her view of the world forever. Faith is a feisty heroine whose courage combined with a determination that girls can be brave and resolute leads to the exposure of much dishonesty and many deceptions. ~ Julia Eccleshare. Shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal 2016.

The Lie Tree is only the second children’s book to take the overall Costa Book of the Year prize, and the first since Philip Pullman won with The Amber Spyglass in 2001.

James Heneage, chair of the final judges, said: “Part horror, part detective, part historical, this is a fantastic story with great central characters and narrative tension. It’s not only a fabulous children’s book but a book that readers of all ages will love."

Reader Reviews

Teens love to read and so in addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can read their full reviews by clicking here.

  • Edel Waugh - '. I really enjoyed this story, mystery, magic and no good neighbours on a small island where this feisty young girl quickly learns who friend and foe are.'
  • Izzy Read - 'Overall, with unexpected plot twists, lies, a mystery and the tale of underdog, I loved The Lie Tree and hope it gets the credit it deserves!'
  • Jessica Anderson - 'a completely original read...This book was so thrilling, it sucked me in after the first few pages.'
  • Destiny Maraj, age 13 - 'quite enjoyable and a good read!'
  • Benedict Simpson, age 12 - 'I found this book a bit hard to get started but as I got to the climax I could barely put it down!'
  • Katherine Sheldon - 'a brilliant is one of the best books I have reviewed yet!!'
  • Poppy, age 16 - 'I found 'The Lie Tree' simply captivating, a truly fantastic book. I could not put it down, there was a constant cliff-hanging edge to it, that made it impossible for me to stop reading. I loved it.'
  • Ella Hollingshead, age 14 - 'A fantastic novel that will appeal to readers of the mystery genre.'


The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge

Faith's father has been found dead under mysterious circumstances, and as she is searching through his belongings for clues she discovers a strange tree. The tree only grows healthy and bears fruit if you whisper a lie to it. The fruit of the tree, when eaten, will deliver a hidden truth to the person who consumes it. The bigger the lie, the more people who believe it, the bigger the truth that is uncovered. The girl realizes that she is good at lying and that the tree might hold the key to her father's murder, so she begins to spread untruths far and wide across her small island community. But as the tree bears more and more fruit, she discovers something terrifying - that her lies were closer to the truth than she could ever have imagined ...


"The Lie Tree is brilliant: dark, thrilling, utterly original. Everyone should read Frances Hardinge. Everyone. Right now." -- Patrick Ness

“A dark, ingenious tale oozing gothic atmosphere.” Costa Children's Book Award Judges

About the Author

Frances Hardinge

Frances Hardinge spent a large part of her childhood in a huge old house that inspired her to write stories from an early age. She read English at Oxford University, then got a job at a software company. However, a few years later a persistent friend finally managed to bully Frances into sending a few chapters of FLY BY NIGHT, her first children's novel, to a publisher. Macmillan made her an immediate offer and she won the Branford Boase First Novel Award in 2006 with her debut, Fly By Night. Her subsequent novels, including Cuckoo Song and A Face like Glass are universally critically acclaimed and have been shortlisted for multiple awards, including the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize and the CILIP Carnegie Medal. The Lie Tree,winner of the Costa Book of the Year 2015 and the Sunday Times Children's Book of the Year 2015 is her seventh novel.

BookBrunch recently interviewed Frances Hardinge …

"At first I just felt completely stunned, then I felt stunned, sleep-deprived, and as if somebody had attached me to a sort of media rollercoaster. Now, I'm working my way around to it sometimes actually sinking in. There's been a great deal of happiness throughout. On the occasions where it has sunk in, I have a tendency to giggle… I still can't really quite believe that this is actually happening!"

Click here to read the full and fascinating interview on BookBrunch.

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Book Info


416 pages
Interest Age: From 12


Frances Hardinge
More books by Frances Hardinge

Author's Website


Macmillan Children's Books an imprint of Pan Macmillan

Publication date

7th May 2015




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