Pants on Fire Themes
The primary theme throughout the novel is that of the truth. Katie continuously struggles with telling the whole truth. It is as if Katie cannot help but to lie. At one point, she even thinks about how her brother used to call her "Liar, liar, pants on fire," when they were younger.
Katie chooses to lie in order to protect herself. She also seems to tell lies to protect the feelings of others. For example, she lies about Eric and sneaks around with Eric behind Seth's back. She does this because she doesn't really want to be with Seth, but she also doesn't want to hurt Seth's feelings.
The biggest truth Katie struggles with is the truth, or the lies, she is telling herself. She tries to convince herself throughout the novel that she is who she is pretending to be. In the end, however, the truth comes out....