Release Date: May 30th 2017
Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
Pay close attention and you might solve this.
On Monday afternoon, five students at Bayview High walk into detention. Bronwyn, the brain, is Yale-bound and never breaks a rule. Addy, the beauty, is the picture-perfect homecoming princess. Nate, the criminal, is already on probation for dealing. Cooper, the athlete, is the all-star baseball pitcher. And Simon, the outcast, is the creator of Bayview High’s notorious gossip app.
Only, Simon never makes it out of that classroom. Before the end of detention Simon’s dead. And according to investigators, his death wasn’t an accident. On Monday, he died. But on Tuesday, he’d planned to post juicy reveals about all four of his high-profile classmates, which makes all four of them suspects in his murder. Or are they the perfect patsies for a killer who’s still on the loose?
Everyone has secrets, right? What really matters is how far you would go to protect them.
I received an eARC from Penguin Random House in exchange for an honest review.
I’m not really sure why I’m surprised that I enjoyed this.
Granted, I don’t read very many murder mysteries, especially ones that have a ‘Breakfast Club’ twist on them, but I genuinely thought this was a strong debut with great character development.
And that’s what it was really, a character study which held a lot of truth and realism about the stereotypes and pressures of being a student in high school. There are cliques and sub cultures you’re supposed to fit into, as well as expectations of you and who you’re supposed to be. But this story really hit home that you do not have to be what anyone says you’re supposed to be, and yet you can still succeed. Being yourself is more important than that.
While I thought the story was slow in the beginning, it really grew on me as we were introduced more to the characters. Four students watch a fifth die during detention, and one of them is lying about who did it. We continue on from the murder to see the consequences of being a suspect in a murder inquiry, and how they find out the killer, but also how the situation changes them and their lives forever. I especially found Cooper (the jock) and Addy (the princess) to have the most character development as well as the strongest voices, but Bronwyn (the brains) was clearly the lead character and yet her POVs were sometimes the weakest.
An exciting debut with an interesting twist, with great characters and an important message!