Title: Dangerous Girls
Author: Abigail Haas
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Paradise quickly gets gruesome in this thrilling page-turner with a plot that’s ripped from the headlines and a twist that defies the imagination.
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…
There were a few reasons that I picked this book up at the library despite not already having it on my to-read shelf: 1. I heard read some pretty good reviews of this; 2. The summary definitely got my attention; and 3. I had to know what happened. Seriously, I am not good at hearing about mysteries and not knowing what happened. Even if I start watching a procedural and am uninterested in it at the beginning, I’ll normally stick around because I need to know what happened. I’m definitely glad I picked this book up to get to the end, because the journey there was interesting.
You think that you know who Anna is at the beginning of the book, but I’m no longer sure that you ever really do. At the trial and through flashbacks, you get many different looks at who Anna is and might be, which was both interesting and confusing. You also learn more about some of the other characters through these flashbacks – but main the murder victim, Anna’s best friend, Elise.
In between these character studies and such, we also have the trial and the murder mystery. Things seem pretty clean and easy to figure out at times and totally confusing and twisty at others. This makes for some frustration, but mostly it makes for a book that you race through to figure out.
That ending is what’s tripping me up, though. I’m not going to spoil it or anything, but it left me with so many different emotions and wishing that I could talk to someone else about it, but I just don’t really know many people who have read this book, and no one from my everyday life. I just have so many thoughts and emotions about it and no way to really discuss them!
So, overall, I was quite impressed with this debut (at least, a debut under this pseudonym, if I remember the author summary exactly), but the end left me impressed, frustrated, confused, and many other emotions that make it difficult for me to pinpoint my exact feelings about this book.