The case is closed. Five years ago, schoolgirl Andie Bell was murdered by Sal Singh. The police know he did it. Everyone in town knows he did it.
But having grown up in the same small town that was consumed by the murder, Pippa Fitz-Amobi isn’t so sure. When she chooses the case as the topic for her final year project, she starts to uncover secrets that someone in town desperately wants to stay hidden. And if the real killer is still out there, how far will they go to keep Pip from the truth?
Pip is an intelligent teenage girl, who decides to investigate the disappearance of teenager Andie Bell as part of her extra credit school project. Andie Bell was “murdered” five years prior to the book’s present timeline, although no body was ever discovered. Over these years, Pip’s had time to invent different theories as to what happened that night, and the main one is – the boy who supposedly “confessed” to killing Andie, is maybe innocent. Pip is determined to help the families devastated by this tragedy to finally know the truth, but the more Pip digs for the truth, the more she puts herself in danger. Because somebody doesn’t want the truth of that night to be uncovered, and they’re quite serious about the lengths they’ll go to keep it buried.
A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder is an upbeat, Nancy Drew-like mystery, with interesting narration style and brilliant lead characters.
Daaaaaaamn, Holly Jackson pulls no punches! I loved this book. The characters and the plot had my stomach in knots. One minute I was all tense, and then I was crying. It had this air about it that sucked me in.This has great plot development, with thrilling mini climaxes that had me hooked.
The story is narrated through two styles; Pip writing in her project logbook, and what is unfolding in real time. This worked because one delivered the plot’s progression by discovering new information, character interactions and so on. The other (through the logbook) provided a diary feel, and acted like a murder board, where the reader gets to contemplate all the facts and evidence Pip has gathered. And oh boy did I! Everyone was a suspect at some point or another… It genuinely felt like I was there with Pip, trying to figure out what was essential to solving the case. I loved this personal and interactive tone, because it had me completely invested.
I admired Pip immensely because of her tenacity, intelligence and how much she cared. And I cared so much for Ravi and Sal. Ravi’s humorous personality provided entertainment, and his partnership with Pip gave that dream team vibe that they were capable of anything. The fact that these characters were so likeable, it made the story even better.
Overall, I read this in three days and it’s getting all 5 stars.
This is a well plotted and cleverly written story. I can’t quite believe it is a debut novel, never mind it being classified as a young adult book. This has honestly bested what would be considered as adult and mature mystery/thrillers, with its suspense, characters and overall plot. I’d recommend it to everyone – not just teenagers. If your favourite genre is mysteries and thrillers, this is worth reading because it’s currently my favourite mystery/thriller of 2019. Well done Holly Jackson, and thank you so much for writing this excellent book. I cannot wait to see what is coming next from this fantastic author!
A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson
Published: May 2019
Genre: young adult, mystery, crime
Thanks for reading!