Monday, September 16, 2013
Review: Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas
Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas
Review by Lauren
copy sent for review, but all opinions are my own
Official Summary: 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...
Review: Sometimes I get random books sent my way, obviously hoping that I will find something I like and review on the blog. Dangerous Girls was one such novel and I probably wouldn't have gotten to it as quick as I did if it wasn't for the reviews I started seeing around the internet. People seemed to really enjoy this suspenseful YA thriller, and I knew I had to see what all the fuss was about!
Really, I could say that this was book was amazing and leave it at that. I could say it gets 4 (or even more) stars and maybe that will be enough for people to pick up this title. However, I think I'll give you a bit more.
Anna is the main character, and we're given her point of view. I liked this because it puts the reader in her immediate thoughts. She's stuck in Aruba, somewhere that should have been a pleasant vacation and that's it. Now, she's in jail awaiting trial for her best friend's murder. It's certainly not something she expected to happen and she's unsure just how to process everything that is going on. One of the worst aspects of her ordeal is hearing about her life from outside sources. Newspapers and news channels are constantly showing photos from her life, talking to people who used to be friends, and reporting on an angry party girl that Anna swears isn't the real her.
The young, murdered girl, Elise, is given depth from the flashback chapters. It shows how Anna and Elise met each other and became the close friends they were up until Elise's death. These background moments allow us, as a reader, to see Anna develop. She becomes more vocal, more willing to go out and have fun. Elise pushes her from the corner to center stage. Anna even finds her wonderful boyfriend, Tate, while at a party with Elise.
Seeing Anna, and others in the friend group, grow and change is important to the overall story. Haas develops tensions, jealousies, friendships, and love throughout the book. Anna is put through the ringer when in jail, from the prosecution, to the media, and even her own friends; people she thought she knew and understood. They pick apart aspects of her life and moments she's experienced in order to create a monster. It's hard not to think about yourself or people you know. If your best friend was found brutally murdered, and people began to suspect you, what would they find in your past? Could people say you're the bad influence? Are you a partier? Are you an angry person? Everyone has aspects of their life they wish could stay hidden, but for Anna, that's not possible.
Before I go on and on, let's just finish the way I started. Give this book a chance. It's a fantastic YA novel, full of questions and thrills. You're bound to find yourself angry, happy, confused, and shocked. It's one hell of a ride!