Everything You Want Me to Be by Mindy Mejia
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I'd like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book!
This is a review of an ARC.
The story jumps in time from before to after the murder of teenager Hattie Hoffman. In my opinion the only part of the story that actually bored me was the police procedural after Hattie's death. I get it, small town cop, out of his depth, is determined to solve this murder. Of course. I was far more interested in reading the key players point of views leading up to (and in some cases after) the murder. And contrary to what most people say about Hattie as a character: I like her. To be honest I found we have similar personalities. Perhaps it's because I feel such a kinship to her that I was so fascinated by this book: and because of this fascination I can't not give it 5 stars.
As horrible as it sounds, I find (close-in-age) teacher/student relationships an interesting conflict in books that can lead to an intriguing plot as there's only really a few different ways it can play out.
I went into this novel telling myself I wasn't going to even attempt to guess who the murderer was, and I was just going to read with an open mind. I lied to myself because not too far into the book I believed I had the killer pegged. I didn't.
Pet peeves: "play practice." It's called rehearsal. Also the amount of boneheaded characters who blamed this very serious and grisly murder on the Macbeth curse. Are you kidding me? Yes, us actors have superstitions regarding the theatre, but oh my god. We acknowledge the "curse" either jokingly, treating it as a funny urban legend/quirk, or sometimes respectfully because some actors who had worked on that show had fatal incidents (of course not every theatre death has been associated in any way with Macbeth, so even that is a bit iffy.) We're not stupid, we're not gullible. And no one is going to casually (or even frantically) blame the brutal murder of a friend on a superstition. No one. Literally the equivalent of saying she died because she walked under a ladder.
The ending really threw me for a loop - and I appreciate that. All in all, I really liked this book. It was an intriguing read, and I totally recommend it.
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