The first week in January is almost at a close and I can proudly say that I have already completed two books from my TBR shelf! I have a goal to read 100 books by the end of 2017 and I feel like that is actually pretty doable if I continue to read two books a week. With every book I finish, I am going to try to write up a review on this blog with my honest thoughts and opinions. So without further ado, let’s get into the reviews!
Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas- I’m a total sucker for a good mystery novel, especially Young Adult ones. Dangerous Girls is a story about a group of wealthy teens who decide to spend their spring break in a vacation home on the island of Aruba. Right off the bat you can just tell this is not a great situation. And what kind of parents allow their TEENAGERS to jet off to a foreign country to party totally unsupervised?? Bad ones, that’s who. The story starts out with the brutal murder of one of the girls (Elise). Unsurprisingly so, the best friend and narrator of the novel, Anna, and her boyfriend, Tate, are arrested for her murder. Hmm… is this sounding familiar to anyone else? Yeah, I was totally getting Amanda Knox vibes too. The story is told in a few different timelines and details the weirdly close friendship that Anna and Elise had. The novels switches between “before”, “the trial” and “now”. I’m not normally a fan of alternating timelines but this was actually done very well, with little to no confusion. The author does a great job of creating a likable, yet unreliable narrator and truly keeps you guessing about who the real killer is until the very last page. What starts as an intriguing “whodunnit” mystery novel, takes a wicked turn into a psychological thriller that truly keeps you thinking long after you’ve finished it. The middle of the book lags a little bit and I found myself getting bored and antsy for more information. I felt as if some flashbacks were not crucial to the storyline and thus made me lose interest. I also feel like there could have been more development and background information about certain character relationships that would have really contributed to the story and not made the timelines seem so rushed and jumpy. Overall though, this was an entertaining, quick read that I would totally recommend to anyone who is a fan of thrillers. 3.75/5 stars
A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro- Let me just start out by saying that I think I might have found my new favorite trilogy and the last two books haven’t even been released yet. This book has got to be one of the more remarkable novels that I have read in a long time. A Study in Charlotte is a modern day retelling of Sherlock Holmes. Jamie Watson and Charlotte Holmes are descendants of the incredible Dr. John Watson and Mr. Sherlock Holmes. The premise is this: Jamie Watson gets a rugby scholarship to a prestigious Connecticut boarding school after an American scout sees him play at his high school in London. The last thing he wants to do is uproot his life and move across the pond, but alas he is forced to after his mother can no longer afford to pay his tuition at his London school. At this new boarding school, Watson discovers that the mysterious Charlotte Holmes is also a student here. Having only ever heard of her, with the knowledge that they are destined to become best friends because of their great-great-great grandfathers, Watson sets out to become her friend. Throw in an estranged father, a violent murder, an attempted murder, amateur detectives and a complicated friendship and you will get one of the best stories you will read this year. This novel is told from the perspective of Jamie Watson, an homage to the original Sherlock stories in which all are narrated by Dr. John Watson. Cavallaro did a fantastic job of making Jamie and Charlotte mirror the personality traits of the original detectives, including Sherlock’s pesky drug habit and stubborn attitude. The character of Charlotte was actually very reminiscent to Veronica Mars. Very sarcastic, intelligent and set in their ways, Charlotte and Veronica also share somewhat of a tortured past. On that note, this book does deal with some relatively dark themes such as addiction and sexual assault, but it is done so in a respectable and informative manner. The next book in this trilogy comes out on February 14th of this year and I cannot wait. I recommend this book to really anyone, especially those of you who are fans of the original Sherlock Holmes stories. 5/5 stars
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