Friday, July 19, 2013

Review of Abigail Haas's 'Dangerous Girls'

Published July 16, 2013
Goodreads Description:
It’s Spring Break of senior year. Anna, her boyfriend Tate, her best friend Elise, and a few other close friends are off to a debaucherous trip to Aruba that promises to be the time of their lives.

But when Elise is found brutally murdered, Anna finds herself trapped in a country not her own, fighting against vile and contemptuous accusations. As Anna sets out to find her friend’s killer, she discovers harsh revelations about her friendships, the slippery nature of truth, and the ache of young love.

Awaiting the judge’s decree, it becomes clear to Anna that everyone around her thinks she is not only guilty, but also dangerous. And when the whole story comes out, reality is more shocking than anyone ever imagined...
About Author:
Abigail Haas is the pseudonym of Abby McDonald.
My Review:
I received this book for review from Simon Pulse and to be completely honest I didn't know what to expect going into it. I have never read a book quite like this and I wasn't sure I would like it, but I proved myself very, very wrong. I LOVED this book. It really blew me away.
It starts off with the murder of Anna's (the main character and narrator) best friend Elise while on vacation in Aruba. It skips around through time telling the stories of Anna meeting Elise, the two of them meeting their group of friends that were on vacation with them, Anna meeting her boyfriend Tate, their vacation, Anna's time in prison, and the trial. The storytelling is really quite remarkable. Even though it skips through time, the reader learns everything they need at precisely the right times. Throughout the story I began to care about all of these characters, who started out as a bunch of random names at the beginning of the book. I almost feel manipulated by the writer, but in a really great way. The way she slowly leaked all of the information to the reader was masterful.
There was also a lot of great commentary on the way of the world and how different foreign legal systems are from the American one I am used to. This book was written at the perfect time with the state of current affairs. Between the murder of Natalie Holloway and the trial and incarceration of Amanda Knox, this story took bits from both of these famous incidents and combined them into a unique story. And I won't give away the ending, but the ending blew my mind. I pride myself on being very good at predicting the ends of stories and books, but this one totally shocked me. I finished it last night after my husband went to bed and it drove me crazy not being able to gush over the ending to anybody.
This was a quick read. It drew me in from the very beginning and delivered all the way through to the end. And what a crazy, shocking end it was. I'm almost sad this is a stand alone book. I'd really love to see what becomes of Anna and the other characters in the book. If this caliber of book is what I can expect in the future from Abigail Haas, I look forward to reading her books to come. This is really a must read. I cannot stress enough how much I enjoyed this book and how surprised I was with just how much I enjoyed it.
My Rating:

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