Guam Goddess in Training Does a Book Review! 'Scarlet Lies' By Lani Young

“Scarlet, are you a cynic?”
“No, I’m a realist. I think you’ll find many romance writers are.”


This is a book review of Lani Young’s ‘Scarlet Lies’ (Book One of the Scarlet Series). I was excited to receive this book from Lani herself in April. There are so many reasons I love anything Lani does and so many ways I loved ‘Scarlet Lies’ even before reading it. For one, Lani has become one of the strongest female voices for Pasifika writers. Her ‘Telesa’ series (YA) is a force upon itself. Young’s work is important because it offers islanders of all backgrounds a connection to characters who reflect their culture. We need more stories about US in this sea of literature, and she is a pioneer.

I nibbled at ‘Scarlet Lies’ at first, getting to know Scar, the heroine of this story. Sometimes I devoured entire sections of the book; much like Scar would when faced with a tasty dessert. I had many LOL moments and many moments of cultural connectedness. I’ve discovered so much of the Samoan life reflects my life as a Chamorro from Guam. As I jumped from chapter to chapter, I highlighted sections in blue that hinted at Scar’s tortured past, pink for cultural observations, and brown for progression in her connection with love interest, Jackson.

Jackson=perfection. I’ll leave it there and let you discover more about him. #JasonMomoa

Young does an excellent job of giving you glimpses of the true pain that Scar has lived with. The Scarlet Letter A, so to speak that she’s been branded with controls her life in so many ways. And aren’t we all tortured by something in our past? Being from an island, they don’t let you forget it, do they?

The writing, every delicious layer, kept me eager to find out more about Scar. The broken Goddess that she is, Scar begins an evolution in this story. Scar is such a real person in my mind that I want to be her friend and bask in her unknowing awesomeness. I love that she is a dessert fiend and also blogs. Big Brown, I wish it existed, trust me I checked. But Scar’s blog exists in this book and Young folds it into the story expertly. And Lani's blog link is here.

Without giving away too much more about this lovely story, because you should really get a copy and read it for yourself, I will praise Young’s writing magic and the journey I took with Scar. I identified with lovely Scar immediately—from being more woman than the norm #curves, to her predilection for anything sweet #croquembouche, and her admiration for sculptured physiques #mancandy, ‘Scarlet Lies’ is a complex, sophisticated dessert of a story and I cannot wait for the next serving, ‘Scarlet Secrets’.


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