On The Wings of Books, who raved about it when I met her and Kate (aka midnight book girl) to disucss BEA. (Did I tell you I was going? And how excited I am? Tell me if you're going!) I wasn't really interested in reading this book until I read her review. Then I immediately downloaded it on my kindle. Luckily, when I finally got to read it a few weeks later, I was not disappointed.
Book: Deadly Cool by Gemma Halliday
Summary: When Hartley breaks into her cheating boyfriend's room to confront him, she finds the dead body of the girl he was sleeping with instead. All the clues point to Josh, her jerk of a boyfriend, but Hartley doesn't believe he's the killer and she sets out to prove it.
Characters: I. Loved. These. Characters. Hartley is real and funny. She's headstrong, but will admit she is scared when she finds herself in bad situations. She is easy to relate to and her voice is unique and drew me in. I would absolutely agree with the assessment that she is a teenage Stephanie Plum. She solves the mystery through sheer force of will.
The other characters were just as great. Josh... was a jerk, but not one dimensional. Chase was perfect. Sexy bad boy who is smart enough to run the school paper and be a hacker? Yes, please. Hartley's best friend, Sam, has just as much personality as Hartley and I generally found her adorable. Even Hartley's mom is an interesting character. There is not one character who bored or annoyed me (as a character).
Plot/Pacing/Structure: It was a very fast read that moved along quickly. Every time I sat down to read a chapter, I would read five without realizing it. The book hooked me and kept me reading. There were some red herrings, as there are in all good mysteries, and plenty of dangerous situations, but the characters are what made the book for me.
Moments I loved: My favorite moment of the whole book is when Hartley decides to search Chase's room. He comes home early, so she hides under his bed. Then he starts to change. It sounds stupid, but it is hilarious. I promise.
WTF moments: The grief councelor was HILARIOUS, but the big reveal was kind of... really? It was ridiculous in a way that fit the story, but I had kind of hoped for more.
Overall: I can't wait to read the next book in this series. I love the characters, I love the voice. It was fun and I'm pretty sure it will end up on my list of go-to books for when I'm having a bad day.
Reading Challenges: 303 pages toward the 15,000 page challenge and 2012 e-book reading challenge. Track my progress on my 2012 Challenges Page.