Friday, April 26, 2013

Prep School Confidential (#1)

Prep School Confidential (#1)
Kara Taylor
$9.99, Paperback
St. Martin’s Griffin, 2013

Genre: School Story, Mystery

Age: 12+

Description: Anne Dowling is the Queen Bee of her exclusive Upper East Side private academy. She can do and get away with whatever she wants—that is until she ignores her instincts about the hot bad boy and accidentally nearly burns down the gym. The key to this incident being accidentally! Unfortunately that is the last straw for her parents and they ship Anne off to a boarding school in Boston called the Wheatley School. There Anne discovers a world wholly different from the one she’s used to. Everyone has already been friends since kindergarten and she is not longer the reigning queen. Anne doesn’t care much for making friends with anyone as she is more concerned to find a way back to New York. Luckily for her though her new roommate, nerdy Isabella, is nice and she does end up caring for her and enjoying her company. That is until a week into her stay at the school that Isabella’s body is found cut up in the woods behind the school. Anne knows something is up especially when the clues don’t begin to add up and the administration seems more concerned with the public image of Wheatley School than justice for a dead student. With the help of Anthony, Isabella’s estranged twin brother, and Brent, the cute King Bee of the school, Anne begins to discover that nerdy Isabella might not have been as innocent as she appeared and that someone on campus may have had a really good reason for killing her.

Opinion: Prep School Confidential is an awesome read! The cover is pretty plain but I enjoy it and it makes sense—a uniform. It takes a while for the story to get going as we join Anne when she is still at her old school and proceed to see her get kicked out. However, none of the book moves slowly so I was never bored with any part of it. I think one of my favorite parts is Anne herself. She starts off a total bitch—so stuck up she can’t do wrong. As the novel progresses and she’s out of her element for once Isabella’s friendship rubs off on her and she realizes a side of her that she never knew existed. And it is a good side—one that is loyal enough to her new friend she would ignore the risks and put herself in the path of the killer in order to bring Isabella’s death to justice. By the end of the novel, Anne is a much more likeable character. There are enough twists and turns in the story that a seasoned mystery fan will be rubbing their head over who actually killed Isabella. I don’t know how Taylor is going to turn this into a series but I welcome the second book!

Thanks to Talia Sherer at St. Martin’s Griffin for the ARC for the YA Galley Group!

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