murder, murder, & murder: three mini-reviews

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson | February 4, 2020
Everyone in Fairview knows the story of Andie Bell, the pretty and popular senior who was brutally murdered by her boyfriend Sal Singh…who then killed himself before he could officially be convicted. Five years later, Pippa has decided to do her senior project on the effect social media played in the case, though she has an ulterior motive: she doesn’t believe Sal was guilty. With the help of Sal’s younger brother, Pippa digs into the case, uncovering a truth she might not want to know.

Anyone who’s a fan of Serial or Veronica Mars will feel right as home within these pages. It’s on the longer side, especially for YA, clocking in at 400 pages, but I tore through it, eager to discover what really happened the night Andie was killed. Was she being bullied? Was she the bully? Are drugs involved? Is she even truly dead? All these questions and more are raised and I happily followed along until the end. A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder has received enough praise already that there are now three other books slated for this series – and I, for one, can’t wait to see where Jackson goes from here! (Also, not-so-silently weeping that she was born in 1992.)

A HUGE thank-you to Delacorte Press for a review copy!

Ten Days Gone by Beverly Long | February 18, 2020
They know exactly when he’ll strike next…they just need to find him first. Detectives A.L. McKittridge and Rena Morgan are on the hunt for a serial killer: over the past forty days, four women have been found murdered, ten days apart from one another. With the clock running out fast before he strikes again, they need to not only determine how the women are connected, but who is next, and most importantly, where do they find the killer?

This is the first in a new series and a really strong start! I was intrigued right from the get-go – every 10 days a woman is killed – and was as eager as the detectives to figure out how the women are linked and how to stop the killer from striking again. Long gave her detectives pretty substantial backstories, particularly Rena who’s struggling with fertility issues, that I’m sure will only been expounded upon in the following books. One quibble: A.L.’s name bugged me the entire time! I kept calling him Al before I finally noticed they were initials! At one point he’s asked what the A and L stand for and so far he’s tight-lipped. That’s one case I’m looking forward to cracking in the next book!

A HUGE thank-you to MIRA for a review copy!

The Third Rainbow Girl: The Long Life of a Double Murder in Appalachia by Emma Copley Eisenberg | January 21, 2020 DNF
I went in fully expecting a true crime read about a double murder in the mountains of West Virginia at the Rainbow Gathering back in 1980.

What I got was the author’s memoir about her time in college when she volunteered to mentor girls at a summer camp. How she read feminist poets and promptly dumped her boyfriend, opting instead to date women. PAGES of bumper sticker sayings from the assortment of cars parked in a Walmart parking lot. …I didn’t care about any of this. I didn’t care about what her naked body looked like as she was in bed with a partner. I didn’t care about her semester abroad in France. I DID care about the double murder the cover promised, but sadly time spent on that story was few and far between.

I will admit there were some really interesting (and startling) socioeconomic facts about West Virginia, particularly in how it relates to Virginia and in proving stereotypes wrong. Still, I went into The Third Rainbow Girl anticipating one thing and wound up with something vastly different that I never would have picked up otherwise.

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