Hartley Grace Featherstone is having a very bad day. First she finds out that her boyfriend is cheating on her with the president of the Herbert Hoover High School Chastity Club. Then he’s pegged as the #1 suspect in a murder. And if that weren’t enough, now he’s depending on Hartley to clear his name.
But as much as Hartley wouldn’t mind seeing him squirm, she knows he’s innocent, and she’s the only one who can help him. Along with her best friend, Sam, and the school’s resident Bad Boy, Chase, Hartley starts investigating on her own. But as the dead bodies begin to pile up, the mystery deepens, the suspects multiply, and Hartley begins to fear that she may be the killer’s next victim.
Turns out my little murder mystery kick is paying off with awesome books. Gemma Halliday has written a fun and addictive mystery novel. I was super impressed with how the story just took off and didn't look back. Not that you would want to go back if you were poor Hartley. Starting the day with finding an empty wrapper in your boyfriends locker and then a dead body in his room, is not any ones ideal way of starting the day. Then when your now ex-boyfriend says he didn't do it what do you do.
Hartley and Sam are two YA characters that I am not sure I could ever get sick of. The way that Gemma has written them just makes them so fun to read and I found myself giggling and finding people that would listen to the little things that I found amusing. I actually felt rather connected to both of the girls. Obviously more Hartley than Sam due to the amount of page time but I am close to both of them. I know how hard it is to find out terrible things and still feel driven to do something to help. I did find her inability to really freak out on Josh annoying but I think I did a lot of it in my head to make up for it. That I think is the only time I felt like I couldn't really connect with Hart, when all she could see was the boy she loved not the one that betrayed her.
There was lots of fun beyond the dead bodies in this book(not that I think dead bodies are fun, they just stir up drama). The car that Sam and Hartley had to take everywhere that took forever to get there was one of them. This would be the time that I mention that it ran on vegetable oil and they had to make stops to fill it up. The strange and different scents that the car produced would be enough to make most teens avoid the entire issue but these girls were on a mission. Driving around something that send fumes out that smell like old burgers is nothing while you are looking for a murderer! I feel that I should also mention Chase. The bad boy that will totally steal every page that he is a part of. There is NO SHAME in being a bad boy and knowing it. The biggest thing for him with me was his ability to say it as it is and his unique style. I know you are thinking well he's a bad boy they are all unique.... Well Chase will stand out and trust me he is totally worth every page he is on.
This was a totally fun and keep you on your toes kind of book. I did figure out who it was but not right away and did second guess myself a couple of times. There was so much fun and humour packed into a thrilling and action packed mystery that you can't help but love it. The next book has been moved up my reading queue and I can't wait to see how things go for Hartley in it!! If you are looking for a light and fun murder mystery or just a light book to squeeze in this is one I would highly recommend!