Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Publisher: Random House
Publication Date: January 3rd 2017
4 OUT OF 5 STARS
Disclaimer: A free copy of this book was received through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Molly Nicoll is a new teacher, young and hopeful. Her first job is started in the middle of the year and she quickly becomes intrigued by her students. Each child has a fascinating life full of dark secrets. What Ms. Nicoll doesn’t know is that her students are still deeply affected by the suicide of a middle school classmate. Told through multiple points of view the novel explores students, teachers, parties and school which might actually be the most dangerous place on earth.
Lindsey Lee Johnson hurtles into the young adult scene with this riveting multi-POV novel that explores an affluent high school. The school hierarchy and social scene is explored through the eyes of eight different students intercut with their teacher’s own POV as she tries to get more involved in their lives. Bad things happen, and it’s thrilling. Rest assured that not every ending is a happy one but somehow everyone finds a place and finds a way to keep living.
While all the plotlines have rather abrupt endings Abigail’s felt particularly shafted. The last character sums up everyone’s future and how she was involved in their story but she barely touches on her ex-best friend and the rather volatile moment they shared in a girls’ washroom. Considering the gravity of what happened to Abigail it could have been spared a little more attention at the end of the novel. Ryan’s ending was also disappointingly ambiguous but not everyone gets clean endings in real life either.
There were a few issues (for example what seemed like a misunderstanding of how Snapchat functions) and the kids were a little too wild, but it was an exciting read. It’s rare that a book can keep excitement coming from the first few pages to the last but the bad things keep happening and there’s a guilty pleasure in waiting for the next disaster. I don’t remember my high school being quite this raunchy – but the book captures the feeling of being a teenager.
An absolute roller-coaster ride of a novel. There were characters I cared more about than others (Elisabeth) but every single one (including Molly!) had an intriguing story to tell and I was absolutely thrilled to be along for the ride.