I am a well...no, scratch that... I am an ocean of adoration, confusion, and affectionate Feels for this book!!
I have to admit that I am quite behind on my ARC reviews BUT I felt like I needed to take some time to read some of the other lovelies on my radar that are not on my early review pile. Note: I'm about to fangirl all over this review so brace yourself.
Do you love brilliant, eccentric, expertly crafted characters? Check!
Do you love enigmatic "Who Done It"s starring quirky teenage virtuosos that are dealing with untimely deaths and also learning to navigate the terrain of their newly budding hormones? Check!
Do you love confusing cliffy endings? Double Check!!
Ok, now that we've established that you're in the right place, let's move along.
I feel the need to shout from the rafters...I LOVED this book and its writing! The writing was smooth and paced perfectly! The humor was slight, alluring and hysterical (in a subtle way). It held me firmly with rapt attention and I was incapable of dragging myself away. It was amazing how the pages, and hours, just melted away leaving behind a bewildered person shaped puddle.
I also LOVED the entire cast! I especially fell for the present day MC, Stevie! She was quietly, nimbly, unapologetically brilliant! She was observant, tenacious and felt like a female Sherlock Holmes... or a CSI- Crime Scene Investigator...or even more aptly a Criminal Minds behavioral analyst... MAN I used to watch too much criminal TV. Anywho, Stevies' best friend, Janelle, was a much appreciated POC representative that happened to be gay and also into the Sciences. GO STEM Ladies!! Nate was a subdued wet blanket but a really good friend in a pinch who put aside his own fears in order to help out a friend. Then there was David... ohhhh David. He was rude and fickle, offputting and angsty but about half way in I fell for his backhanded allure. He was devilishly charming, disarming, a flat out ass AND then back to an exquisitely delicious love interest.
Be warned: there were dueling time periods, which normally irks me to no end BUT it worked here and was even remarkably satisfying. The duality felt like there were two mysteries unfolding simultaneously, which there was, and it was pulled off seamlessly.
Now on to that ending...That ending... holy hell in a handbasket!!! I am a mess right now with theories swirling around my head. I am Sooooo confused. I NEED the next book Toot Sweet! I am exclamation point crazy over this!! I know this whole book was carefully crafted to set up for more books to come but come on... that ending was too cliffy for my brain-heart-Feels to take!! I loved David by the end BUT what the hey hey?? Just be prepared to be abruptly confused, annoyed and in love all at the same time.
Overall: I am a fanatic for this book!! It's going straight into my favorites list. It will not pass GO or collect any cash but it will live on in my pile of literary loves, which I happen to adore more than cash... well.... maybe not but I still loved this book. It happened to be Mysterious and Unconventional and so well paced that I tore through it like it was my personal letter from Hogwarts!! It caused me to (over)use the exclamation point like I have never before... like I invented the damn thing. Not so unlike my punctuation craze, I was also infatuated with the writing, world development and character development. They were all spot on. The character development was my favorite by far. I loved-loathed & felt deeply for each and every character. I can't gush enough about my affections for this book! I highly reccomend it!!