White Rabbit is a YA novel written by Caleb Roehrig. I haven’t read any of his other books, but I was excited about the opportunity to read this one because the plot intrigued me.
Rufus is at a Fourth of July party when he receives a frantic phone call from his half sister. They don’t have much of a relationship, so Rufus knows that things must really be bad if April is reaching out to him. Rufus is less than thrilled that his ex-boyfriend Bash wants to come along, but since Bash is the one with a car, there isn’t much of a choice in the matter.
Rufus and Bash walk into a crime scene, and then they spend the rest of that one long night trying to figure out what happened at the lake house where they found April. They crisscross the town, interviewing and reinterviewing the other people who were at the lake house. Everyone has their reasons for being evasive, and truthfulness seems to come at a premium.
And of course, all that time alone in the car gives Rufus and Bash the opportunity to figure out what happened to their short relationship, and why things went wrong.
This was an amazing book. It’s very fast paced, and I loved that Rufus was such a smart protagonist. The plot was intriguing, and there was a mystery to solve, but Rufus’ wry sense of humor made the book even more enjoyable. It was a little bit more difficult to like Bash because he hurt our protagonist in the recent past, but he is equally as intriguing, and he has own obstacles to overcome. Roehrig has created an interesting dynamic with Rufus’ family dynamic, and his secondary characters all offer unique perspectives on the situation.
I would absolutely recommend White Rabbit. I read most of this book in one sitting. It was so exciting that I didn’t want to stop reading. I just had to find out what would happen next, both in terms of the big mystery and the frostiness between Rufus and Bash. It’s astounding that everything that happens (and so much happens) occurs over a single night. This is an epic book, and I am definitely going to seek out more of Roehrig’s books in the future.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advance copy of this book.
S.T.A.G.S. is a young adult novel written by M.A. Bennett. This book had piqued my interest because I love boarding school stories, and I was very excited when I finally had the opportunity to read it.
Greer is a new student at St. Aidan the Great, a posh English boarding school. She doesn’t really fit in with her peers, so needless to say, she is quite surprised when she receives an invitation to spend the weekend at the country estate of the most popular boy in the school. Henry and his friends are collectively known as the Medievals, and they serve as school prefects.
Greer is enchanted by the sumptuous estate, and flattered by the attention from Henry. She’s so wrapped up in these superficial details that she fails to notice that the weekend of “Huntin’, Shootin’, and Fishin’” has taken a sinister turn. She and her fellow guests must band together if they are going to survive the weekend. Read more
Romancing the Throne is a young adult novel written by Nadine Jolie Courtney. I had seen some buzz about this book, and it seemed like a YA version of The Royal We, which is one of my favorite books. I finally snagged a copy from the library, and recently finished reading it.
Charlotte is a student at the posh Sussex Park School, and she has found herself in an elite circle of friends, one of whom is Prince Edward, the heir to the English throne. There is an instant connection, and Charlotte is just thrilled to be dating the handsome young prince.
But conflict arises when Charlotte’s older sister Libby transfers to Sussex Park. Charlotte introduces Libby to everyone in her circle, and is utterly horrified when Libby and Edward start spending time together. Everything seems like a huge mess, but apparently, the worst is yet to come. Can Charlotte salvage everything she holds dear before it is completely destroyed? Read more
One of Us Is Lying is a young adult novel written by Karen M. McManus. I found it on the new release shelf at my town library.
Five teens walk into detention: Bronwyn is an academic overachiever, Addy is a pretty girl, Nate is a drug dealer, Cooper is a baseball star, and Simon is brooding and aloof. They are all there because they were caught with cell phones during class. There’s just one problem- the phones aren’t actually theirs and none of them have any idea what the phones are doing in their bags. They are a rather eclectic group, and don’t necessarily run in the same social circles. Being in detention for a something they didn’t actually do is the least of their concerns because by the end of detention, one of the five is dead. Read more
The Hate U Give is a young adult novel written by Angie Thomas. I kept hearing about how amazing it was, so I requested a copy through my library network.
Starr Carter is a typical teenager who searches for her place in the world. Her parents want her to have more opportunities than her urban neighborhood can offer, so they sacrifice to send her to a private school in the suburbs where she is one of the only African American students. She drifts between these two worlds, not feeling entirely comfortable in either. She is excited to reconnect with her best friend Khalil at a party, but when Khalil offers her a ride home, their car is pulled over and Khalil is shot by the police officer. Starr is the only witness, and initially, she takes solace in her anonymity. But when the police officer claims that she and Khalil were combative and that his actions were self-defense, Starr knows that she has to speak out. Read more
The One That Got Away was written by Melissa Pimentel. This is a cute story that bills itself as a modern version of Jane Austen’s Persuasion. I don’t usually read a great deal of contemporary adult fiction, and I must admit that the Austen connection is what drew me to this book.
Ruby lives and works in NYC, and has dedicated herself wholeheartedly to her career in advertising. As the story begins, she is preparing to travel to England for her little sister’s dream wedding. There’s just one problem- Ruby’s ex-boyfriend is going to be there as well because he’s best friends with the groom. Read more
I received a digital copy of this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Perennials is author Mandy Berman’s debut novel. I was looking forward to reading this book because I spent seven summers at sleepaway camp as both a camper and a counselor, so I could relate to the subject matter and wanted to see how this (albeit fictional) account compared to my own experiences.
Rachel lives in an apartment in the city with her single mother and Fiona lives in a big house in Westchester with her family. But when they meet at summer camp as girls, they find that they have a lot in common. Read more
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Yours Truly is the second book in Heather Vogel Frederick’s Pumpkin Falls mystery series. This book is narrated by Truly Lovejoy, who is turning thirteen as the story begins. It is Spring Break, and Truly’s cousin is coming to visit New Hampshire- all the way from Texas.
There is a lot going on in this book. In addition to the typical trials and tribulations of a middle schooler, we also have maple syrup season, the swim team, vandalism that threatens to tear the small town apart, and discoveries of a historical significance. It almost seemed like there was too much going on for one book, but I’m not sure which aspect of the plot could be eliminated without leaving a noticeable void. Read more
I’ve enjoyed several of Sara Shepard’s Pretty Little Liars books, so I was excited when I found her latest book The Amateurs at the library.
Speaking of Pretty Little Liars… The Amateurs begins in a similar fashion. The details are different, of course, but the bottom line is that Helena Kelly, a pretty girl in an affluent suburb disappears and is found dead.
Five years later, Seneca Frazier is a college student who is obsessed with the Helena Kelly case. She connects with Maddy, an online friend from a true crime/amateur sleuth website. Maddy, who is from Dexby, the town where the crime occurred, invites Seneca to come visit for Spring Break. What better way to cross-reference the details of the case? Perhaps they can uncover some clues that the police missed! Read more
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Brightwood is a middle grade novel written by Tania Unsworth. This was originally published under the title The Secret Life of Daisy Fitzjohn, but the name was changed for the American edition.
Daisy Fitzjohn is a young girl living in a manor house in England. Her life is quite unconventional. To begin with, she has never left Brightwood Hall; this is a modern story, so never having left her house is unusual. Daisy has wondered about the outside world, but she is content to remain at home while her mother leaves the house for provisions. And if being isolated from the outside world was not enough, it is immediately clear that Daisy’s mother is a hoarder. Daisy is unfazed by the unconventional lifestyle; after all, she doesn’t know that anything is amiss. She is content to converse with her friends, like the rat named Tar and a topiary horse. Read more