Sunday, September 15, 2013

Review of Dead Girls Don't Lie by Jennifer Shaw Wolf

Title/Author: Dead Girls Don't Lie by Jennifer Shaw Wolf
Publisher/Date published: Bloomsbury USA Children's Books, September 17th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Rachel died at two a.m... Three hours after Skyler kissed me for the first time. Forty-five minutes after she sent me her last text.
Jaycee and Rachel were best friends. But that was before... before that terrible night at the old house. Before Rachel shut Jaycee out. Before Jaycee chose Skyler over Rachel. Then Rachel is found dead. The police blame a growing gang problem in their small town, but Jaycee is sure it has to do with that night at the old house. Rachel’s text is the first clue — starting Jaycee on a search that leads to a shocking secret. Rachel’s death was no random crime, and Jaycee must figure out who to trust before she can expose the truth.

I'd heard AMAZING things about Breaking Beautiful, Jennifer Shaw Wolf's debut novel, but I haven't actually read it (I did pre-order the paperback, so this should be remedied soonish), which meant that I went into Dead Girls Don't Lie without expectations that were insanely high. And guys, it totally worked for me!

Since I started my new residency, I have a LOT less free time to spend on reading and because of the bits and pieces I could snatch over the span of a couple of days, I struggled a bit at first. Because the book wasn't gripping me right from the start and there was all this information and rigidity and things I couldn't make sense of. But when I picked it up again on the weekend and just spent hours reading it: TOTALLY DIFFERENT STORY! I finally connected a bit to Jaycee and started getting into the story and the creepiness of it.

Jaycee was a bit too much of a goody-goody for me, but in the end I started to like her. Though what Eduardo called her sounded about right to me: boba (which according to the book translates to naive, stupid, silly), focusing mostly on naive for me. She was so ready to trust everyone! I mean, at one point I was just screaming at her to try and see what was right in front of her and GAH!!
But I sort of get that she didn't see it, I mean, it's always easier when you're on the outside, right? I did like that she genuinely cared about people. And I respected that she was determined to be worthy of Rachel's trust in figuring out what had happened. I mean, she didn't necessarily go about it in the best way, but she did commit to it and I liked that.

Jaycee's dad REALLY annoyed me at times. I mean, ok, he wants to protect his daughter, but seriously dude, we live in the 21st century. The whole thing with her not having access to a computer at home and not being allowed to do pretty much ANYTHING a girl her age would want to do aside from school and taking away her cellphone and everything... That just bugged me. I'm a firm believer that you should just talk to your kid about the stuff you want to protect them from and not try to lock them up or something. I definitely felt that both her parents failed at parenting.

The small-town vibe that echoes throughout Dead Girls Don't Lie is something that I SO recognize! Everybody knows everybody's business, or at least they THINK they do. Don't get me wrong, small towns are cute, but they do have their disadvantages, especially when people living in it are scared of things and people that are different, or not from there. And Dead Girls Don't Lie showed this perfectly.

After the rocky start, I really got into the story and the pace went up and the stakes got higher and everything got creepier and I didn't trust anyone anymore and that was awesome! I'm not much of a mystery girl, but Jennifer Shaw Wolf definitely did it right with this one! I did figure out who had done it way before Jaycee did, mainly because I started to feel uncomfortable every time the killer was mentioned or in a scene.

I blew through the second half of the book and I'm really excited to get my hands on Breaking Beautiful as well soon!

My rating: 3,5 stars


  1. Unrealistic parents annoy me in YA fiction; either end of the good/bad spectrum. I always feel like they're making adults not to be real people, just in the way of teens/or meal ticket.

  2. Another case of failed parents. It's always: they don't exist or they are bad parents. I hate it when they try to smother their children. I think I'd have some problems with Jaycee, but she doesn't sound too bad :) I hope you're going to enjoy breaking beautiful too!


  3. I despise unrealistic or absent parents and can't stand stupid heroines, so I'm not sure this is for me... I'm totally recognizing the small town thing though! You can keep nothing a secret here (I live in a small town in Drenthe) ;)

    Great review :)
    (I love your header, by the way)

  4. Sounds great. It's recognizable: the small town and parents who want to protect you from almost everything. ;) I'll keep my eye out to this one!

  5. I definitely agree about Jaycee's naivety-it was the most annoying trait to me as I'm used to more cynical YA protags but it was also a nice change and a bit endearing that she still has such innocence.