Author: Danielle Rollins
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery/Thrillers, Contemporary
Publication date: June 6th, 2017
Monsters lurk where you least expect…
Charlotte has always felt ordinary compared to her two best friends at the prestigious Weston Preparatory Institute. Not enigmatic and daring like Ariel or beautiful and brilliant like Devon, Charlotte has never quite met the standards of the school—or those of her demanding mother. But with Ariel and Devon by her side, none of that mattered. They became the family she never had.
Until the unthinkable happens—Ariel commits suicide. And less than a month later, so does Devon.
Everyone accepts the suicides as tragic coincidences, but Charlotte refuses to believe that. And when she finds mysterious clues left behind by Ariel, Charlotte is thrust down a path that leads to a dangerous secret about Weston Prep. There’s a reason Weston students are so exceptional, and the people responsible are willing to kill to protect the truth…
"But I dream of the woods again. Shadows and laughter and running. Searching for the two people I can never find."
Ugh, I really was considering whether writing a review of this book or not, because honestly? I feel like I don't know what to say about it. Did I enjoy it? Probably. Did it blew me away? Definitely not.
The thing with this book and what made me buy it in the first place was the cover and because I wanted to read something by Danielle Rollins aka Danielle Vega that wasn't horror or paranormal. And when I knew about this one I immediatly wanted to pick it up. And well… let's be real here, the cover helped. A LOT.
So even though the book itself didn't have the most amazing reviews, I went with pretty high hopes, expecting something that was going to knock me out of my seat. And… for the most part, it wasn't.
"Once upon a time, there were three beautiful sisters. Their families decided they didn't want them anymore, so the princesses ran away and hid inside an old castle in the middle of the woods. […] They decided they would never leave the castle. Ut would be their home, forever and ever."
First of all let me start by saying this is part of a companion series, but you can totally read it as a standalone. The thing is that it was a bit predictable to me without knowing anything about the world, so maybe if you have read Burning, which is the first book, everything would be way more obvious to you.
It was very fast and easy to get to, that's for sure. I didn't have any trouble remembering events or things or certain things that happened to the characters in the past. I read it in one day, and you know me: I'm a very slow reader. I like to take my time while reading a book and I get so distracted. Anyways, back to the review.
Of course I was really glad it didn't have any horror, and it was set in a boarding school. I don't know why but I love reading stuff that happened in boarding schools, it adds such an eery and creepy vibe and it makes the whole experience so much better. And that's exactly what I felt with this one.
"I saved the princess, though. I ticked her into the pocket of my shorts before I pushed the window close and crept back into bed.
Just that one time, I saved her."
My main problem I believe was with the characters. I had very mixed feelings about them, and I didn't really connect with them as much as I would have liked to. There were some parts I enjoyed and understood, but the mayority of the things the protagonist did did not really make sense to me.
What I really enjoyed some of the twists the story had, and honestly did not expected them (I cannot tell you otherwise it will be a spoiler) but I was a bit disappointed by the ending. As I said at the beginning of this review, it was a bit obvious to me what was going to happen. I expected a punch that would surprise me, and unfortunately it did not come.
However I think I will be reading more by that author or continue the series. I'll be keeping an eye on the next installment and see what's about!
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