Today’s First Line Friday is one that will pull you in and you want to keep reading! In fact that is what happened to me as I was working on this post. I included the first few lines today. I’m going to have to get this one! Yet another to add to the never ending TBR:
This is how I kill someone.
I learn his habit, I know his schedule. It is not difficult. His life consists of quick stops to the dollar store for the bare minimum of things required to keep this ragged cycle going, his hat pulled down over his eyes so as not to be recognized.
But he is. It’s a small town.
A contemporary YA novel that examines rape culture through alternating perspectives.
Alex Craft knows how to kill someone. And she doesn’t feel bad about it.
Three years ago, when her older sister, Anna, was murdered and the killer walked free, Alex uncaged the language she knows best—the language of violence. While her own crime goes unpunished, Alex knows she can’t be trusted among other people. Not with Jack, the star athlete who wants to really know her but still feels guilty over the role he played the night Anna’s body was discovered. And not with Peekay, the preacher’s kid with a defiant streak who befriends Alex while they volunteer at an animal shelter. Not anyone.
As their senior year unfolds, Alex’s darker nature breaks out, setting these three teens on a collision course that will change their lives forever.
Author: Mindy McGinnis
Published: October 10, 2017
Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars
Sasha Stone knows her place—first-chair clarinet, top of her class, and at the side of her oxford-wearing boyfriend. She’s worked her entire life to ensure that her path to Oberlin Conservatory as a star musician is perfectly paved.
But suddenly there’s a fork in the road, in the shape of Isaac Harver. Her body shifts toward him when he walks by, her skin misses his touch even though she’s never known it, and she relishes the smell of him—smoke, beer, and trouble—all the things she’s avoided to get where she is. Even worse, every time he’s near Sasha, her heart stops, literally. Why does he know her so well—too well—and she doesn’t know him at all?
Sasha discovers that her by-the-book life began by ending another’s: the twin sister she absorbed in the womb. But that doesn’t explain the gaps of missing time in her practice schedule or the memories she has of things she certainly never did with Isaac. As Sasha loses her much-cherished control, her life—and heart—become more entangled with Isaac. Armed with the knowledge that her heart might not be hers alone, Sasha must decide what she’s willing to do—and who she’s willing to hurt—to take it back.
Edgar Award–winning author Mindy McGinnis delivers a dark and gripping psychological thriller about a girl at war with herself, and what it really means to be good or bad.
I was so excited about this book! I saw it on EpicReads and all over booktube so I asked my mom to get it for me for Christmas. She obliged and so I started reading. I’ll admit that it started a little slowly, which is why I gave it 4 stars. I liked Sasha a lot because I could totally relate to her. I was the one in high school who sat and read and studied while everyone else was hanging out and going to parties. I was sheltered and easily offended by bad language and off-color jokes. Thankfully, I did not find out that I was a twin who absorbed my sibling in the womb! I totally understand how that would throw a teen for a loop!
And unfortunately, that’s when I started really disliking Sasha! I have no patience for kids who are disrespectful to their parents and manipulates the people around them by being fake. By the end, Sasha is just another stupid, millennial teen who can’t take any responsibility for her own actions. But, the story was awesome! Once it got going, I could barely put it down. In a world of the same stories being rehashed and retold over and over again, this was an original book and I loved it! I would absolutely recommend this to anyone. Definitely some language and mature content, so I would save this for older teens.
Author: Mindy McGinnis
Published: October 6, 2015
Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 5 Stars
Description from Amazon
Grace Mae is already familiar with madness when family secrets and the bulge in her belly send her to an insane asylum—but it is in the darkness that she finds a new lease on life. When a visiting doctor interested in criminal psychology recognizes Grace’s brilliant mind beneath her rage, he recruits her as his assistant. Continuing to operate under the cloak of madness at crime scenes allows her to gather clues from bystanders who believe her less than human. Now comfortable in an ethical asylum, Grace finds friends—and hope. But gruesome nights bring Grace and the doctor into the circle of a killer who will bring her shaky sanity and the demons in her past dangerously close to the surface.
This is the second time I’ve read this book; unfortunately, I didn’t remember much from my first reading, so I went for a second reading. I’m so glad I did! This book is fantastic! I originally found this book sitting on the YA shelf in Barnes and Noble, but I don’t believe this is a YA book. I wouldn’t let any younger teens read it at all. There isn’t anything blatantly explicit, but certain themes are not appropriate for younger readers. I don’t want to imply that this is a dirty, ultra-mature book. There is very little language, some “old fashioned” crude humor, and grisly murder scenes. This is another book for the Criminal Minds fan.
Thornhollow and Grace view crimes through the lens of behavior. There’s also the frustration of knowing who the culprit is, but having no physical evidence to confirm guilt. Although Grace’s life is now centered around asylums, they are not actually the center of the story. Grace goes on a journey of self-discovery that is fascinating to observe. The irony of her status as insane while being of exceptional intelligence thrilled my soul. There is also a theme of true feminism during a time in which women were still fighting for the right to vote and fighting against the power of men to do as they please with no consequences.
Unfortunately, this book highlights problems we still have within our American mental health system. Involuntary commitments are still rampant, based on nothing but one person’s word, for whatever reason a judge deems sufficient. And the ending is oh so satisfying!!!!! I completely forgot how the story ended so I gasped out loud when I figured out Grace’s scheme! Totally worth it! I would absolutely recommend this book to anyone who likes criminal psychology, historical fiction, mental health issues, or just looking for an awesome story.