Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Death and the Girl Next Door by Darynda Jones

Death and the Girl Next Door by Darynda Jones
Release Date – October 2, 2012
Publisher Website –  St Martin’s Press/Raincoast Books
Publisher Social Media -  Twitter
Pages - 274 pages
My Rating- 3/5
**obtained from publisher for an honest review**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
Darynda Jones, author of The New York Times bestselling series that began with First Grave on the Right, brings us Death and the Girl Next Door, a thrilling Young Adult novel garnering high praise and early buzz from major authors
Ten years ago, Lorelei's parents disappeared without a trace. Raised by her grandparents and leaning on the support of her best friends, Lorelei is finally beginning to accept the fact that her parents are never coming home. For Lorelei, life goes on. 
High school is not quite as painful as she thinks it will be, and things are as normal as they can be. Until the day the school's designated loner, Cameron Lusk, begins to stalk her, turning up where she least expects it, standing outside her house in the dark, night after night. Things get even more complicated when a new guy—terrifying, tough, sexy Jared Kovach—comes to school. Cameron and Jared instantly despise each other and Lorelei seems to be the reason for their animosity. What does Jared know about her parents? Why does Cameron tell Jared he can't have Lorelei? And what will any of them do when Death comes knocking for real? Thrilling, sassy, sexy, and inventive, Darynda Jones's first foray into the world of teens will leave readers eager for the next installment.
I went back and forth after reading this novel. I couldn’t decide whether or not I liked it. I am still unclear. This novel has some entertaining aspects to it, but other parts that felt like rehash of many other novels out there.

The characters where a little hit and miss for me. I didn’t connect with the main character at all. Lorelei quickly turns into a blushing, boy obsessed girl who can barely focus on anything else. A majority of the novel is spent discussing the many ways in which Jared is sexy, attractive and so perfect. Lorelei also spends that same amount of time wondering what he could possibly see in plain, average, ordinary her. I, however, found the secondary characters of  Brooklyn and Glitch to be much more enjoyable. Brooklyn is full of sass and quite funny. Glitch is geeky, really funny and so sweet. Their friendship was one of the more fun aspects of the story. It was refreshing to see the reveal to her friends not be dragged out. I liked that people in Lorelei's life knew what was going on. It seemed much more logical than having her hide everything.

The two new guys in Lorelei’s life Jared and Cameron are what the plot mostly revolves around. The mystery of what exactly is going on with these two guys was part of the fun for me. The fight scenes involving these two are action packed and grab your interest. However, other than being attractive, strong and something to propel the mystery, these two don’t get much development. We learn a little, but both have deeper secrets that I wish would have been fleshed out more. Jared’s secret is captivating and I wish it would have been the primary focus, because who and what he is…that is the story I want.

The ending half of the novel is much stronger than the second. The action ramps up and things are revealed that allows the story to fall into place. I am completely intrigued by where the story is headed. The real story, for me, seemed to develop at the end. Sadly, I felt the pacing was off and it hurt the overall story.

A novel that had some nice quirky, humorous moments and a wonderful ending that sadly couldn’t distract me from other issues. A heroine who is focused on the boy, and some pacing issues made this one not for me. A slower start but leaving off with an ending that hints at potential for the sequel.


  1. Great review. I've heard mixed feelings about this book, still unsure as wel.


  2. I had mixed feeling about this book. Some parts I really enjoyed but the heroine and her TSTL boy fixation was really disappointing. Great review.

  3. I was really unsure whether to request this when I saw it on NetGalley, but after reading your review I'm glad I didn't. I'm still interested in maybe reading it one day, but it doesn't really sound like a very addictive, but rather like a typical YA book. I'm glad you liked it despite these few problems - thanks for sharing your opinion with us. Great review!


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