Monday, December 26, 2016

Book Review: WE KNOW IT WAS YOU by Maggie Thrash

I first got to know Maggie Thrash's writing when her graphic memoir, Honor Girl, passed by my desk. It was a beautiful book in an of itself, but what I remember most about it was how hard it was to categorize. Did it go with biographies? Graphic novels? The important lesson here, of course, is that Maggie Thrash defies labels. And her new novel, WE KNOW IT WAS YOU is a prime example of this.

It’s better to know the truth. At least sometimes.

Halfway through Friday night’s football game, beautiful cheerleader Brittany Montague—dressed as the giant Winship Wildcat mascot—hurls herself off a bridge into Atlanta’s surging Chattahoochee River.

Just like that, she’s gone.

Eight days later, Benny Flax and Virginia Leeds will be the only ones who know why.

Book Review: This book drew me in immediately, and its unique narrative expounded the twists and turns of the fantastically disturbing mindsets of its characters. For example, the very first part takes place in the head of the perpetrator, and even though I didn't yet know who this person was, I felt like I knew what kind of world they had defined themselves within. This is usually a very difficult thing to pull off, and this author did it beautifully. I also especially admire her ability to bring such a diverse set of palpable voices to the story. Even though the main characters Benny Flax and Virginia Leeds form an odd pair in their Mystery Club, they are able to complement each other in unexpected ways, whether Virginia is honest with Benny about how unforgiving he is, or whether Benny is showing Virginia ways to be a bit more subtle in her investigations. And even though they know who the perpetrator is well before the story is done, it doesn't take away from the suspense, because there are so many interesting moving parts to follow. And while most of these pieces are resolved in some way, there were a few that aren't (like Benny's relationship with his father and what Virginia's life was like before she went to Winship Academy). These aspects will likely expand in further novels within the series, which is a great one for teens (and adults) looking for a mystery with a slightly sadistic twist.

Buy: BookPassage ~ Barnes & Noble ~  IndieBound

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