Wednesday, 1 May 2019

A Good Girl's Guide To Murder by Holly Jackson (Young Adult, 10E/10E)

 2nd May 2019, Electric Monkey, 448 pages, Paperback, Review copy

Book summary from press release
The case is closed. Five years ago, schoolgirl Andie Bell was murdered by Sal Singh. The police know he did it. Everyone in town knows he did it. But having grown up in the same small town that was consumed by the crime, Pippa Fitz-Amobi isn't so sure. When she chooses the case as the topic for her final project, she starts to uncover secrets that someone in town desperately wants to stay hidden.

And if the real killer is still out there, how far will they go to keep Pip from the truth . . . ?

Nayu's thoughts
Wow! Oh boy this was a good book, not just because of the story either. I flipped through the book before reading it and discovered a whole load of pages missing, with a note saying that the murderer had them and I needed to email the publicity team for the pages. It wasn't as simple as being given them. I had to guess out of 3 suspects who did it, then reply. 
If you don't want to know how I figured it out then don't highlight the next paragraph! 

I was so worried that I wouldn't get the pages if I guessed wrong, that on seeing Holly had posted a video of her flipping through the final chapters in a finished non-ARC copy of the book, I spent time stopping and starting those clips to see if I could get a clue. I did. Although there's a lot more to the end than I expected, so I was surprised by the truth. However, even if I hadn't have worked out who it could be, I still would have raised suspicion on that character just because a few things stood out when I read the book. I am not saying what, you can read it for yourself. Unsure if this counts as cheating, but it definitely means that authors need to be careful what they flip through on social media!!!! I should have known better that I would still get the chapters even if I did guess wrong. I don't regret looking either! 

Back to the book review...

The ARC publicity antics added to the fun of reading the book. Pip is a likeable characters, unlike Andie who personally reminded me of Alison in the book and TV series Pretty Little Liars. It felt so much like that in the beginning which made me like the story even more. Pip isn't afraid to dig deep for the truth, and I am not the only person thankful that she did that. I was frequently scared for the danger she put herself in, especially when someone (not necessarily the murderer) started warning her off from her investigation. It made me glad I was reading it in daylight, and extremely annoyed I had to wait to read the last few chapters because I wanted to know right then! The sense that Pip was in danger for what she was doing grew greater throughout the story, and she isn't the only one directly affected by her quest for the truth, which made me even harder to read.

There are some real sad parts, so be prepared to need tissues and a cup of hot tea to relax you. There's no denying some of the scenes are hardhitting, but that's what a thriller and mystery book should entail. Pip's friends, both old and new, really do help support her. I liked how the style of the information was portrayed to the reader because readers will easily relate to that format, it made it seem more real. especially at the beginning because the inclusion of technology is very relevant to readers. I still don't really know what an EQP or whatever assessment she was writing is, but I didn't need to know because it was important, even if she did break all the rules set by her teachers to keep her disruption and possible distress to those involved in Andie's case to a minimum. But then there wouldn't have been a story, so I'm glad she bent the rules. 

I especially liked how much Pip's family featured in her life. I like how her younger brother always asks a new friend to play with him, it's what children do and while I don't have a younger sibling, I can easily imagine one being a bit pesky. 

I feel this book does genuinely need to be reread a few times to pick up all the hints that are in the story, and it's so good that I know I will reread the mystery, as I will forget the finer details of exactly what happens to Andie. Be sure to pick it up - don't worry, the finished copies have all the chapters in the book already in them, no clue solving for you!

Be sure to follow Holly on Twitter to keep up with her news!

Suggested read 
For another girl caught up in a murder case check out I Have No Secrets by Penny Joelson (Young Adult, Thriller, 10E/10E)

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