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Presented by State Library Victoria

How 'Genuine Fraud' failed me (with very few spoilers)

Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart defied my expectations. Unfortunately, my expectations were high. And so it failed me. Here’s why:

  1. The timing. Throughout the whole book, time was moving backwards. For example: Chapter 1 would be Sunday, but Chapter 2 would be 5 days earlier. The time skips got more drastic the more I read, until I was so confused I had to put it down and blink confusedly for a straight 10 seconds.
  2. The characters. Jude was poorly constructed, earning no sympathy or empathy from me. I could not, no matter how hard I tried, realise why she was feeling what she was feeling. Imogen made no sense either. I could not empathise at ALL. They were all either too complicated, too simple, too shallow, or too… unfathomable?
  3. There was almost no descriptive language. Probably the most description in the whole thing was when the ocean was being described.
  4. The language did not suit the book.
  5. The plot was slow. It took me an extra read of the book to even barely get what was going on, and then another hour trying to think. AND – well, there’s no nice way to put this, but – it was honestly pretty boring. It didn’t really engage me very much. I was not – how do you say – transfixed and absorbed. I would take a break for fifty minutes and come back to read it only because I knew I had to review it. Very disappointing.
  6. The cover was terrible. Sure, I get the significance of cutting your hair to hide or whatever, but even a person holding a mask could portray that message better than locks of hair and some scissors ever could. The title was written in bland writing that – oh no – didn’t suit the book. If you’re writing a book about fraud, at least have a font that suits the theme. Even if I decide to make a cover for a fan fic or something, I at least try to suit the font to the book. But apparently not when it comes to E. Lockhart.
  7. There was too much faffing around (an English expression) and not enough action. It took like 20 chapters before anything good happened. The first 20 chapters was just talking about Jude and giving her a terrible introduction.
  8. The ending confused me.  E. Lockhart could have left off with a definite note, but NO. They just HAD to add a mystery. Great.

So, that’s my review. Hopefully it was pretty spoiler free. I rate this book 2/10. Honestly cannot understand how this made it to the Silver Inkys. Bye!



I agree with all of this. The time skips were not clear enough. In the middle of it, I realised it was(too late though). They did not effectively use the backwards time.

10th Jul, 18

My opinions aren’t that harsh tbh. Yes the cover was terrible and the characters were unrealistic and very difficult to empathise with but I actually liked the experimental style of the book. I didn’t really mind the writing style/description because I think it suits the character of Jude. I do agree that it was too long and too confusing at times, and I also found that the plot twists weren’t that surprising.

10th Jul, 18

I really enjoyed the time skips, but agree that things were confusing to begin with.

7th Aug, 19