Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Book Review: THE CHEERLEADERS by Kara Thomas

Oh, this was a terrific murder mystery that had me engaged from page one with just the right amount of suspense and tight writing. Scroll down for my full review.

July 31, 2018
Delacorte Press (Random House)
ISBN-13: 978-1524718329

Description from the Publisher:
There are no more cheerleaders in the town of Sunnybrook.

First there was the car accident--two girls dead after hitting a tree on a rainy night. Not long after, the murders happened. Those two girls were killed by the man next door. The police shot him, so no one will ever know his reasons. Monica's sister was the last cheerleader to die. After her suicide, Sunnybrook High disbanded the cheer squad. No one wanted to be reminded of the girls they'd lost.

That was five years ago. Now the faculty and students at Sunnybrook High want to remember the lost cheerleaders. But for Monica, it's not that easy. She just wants to forget.

Only, Monica's world is starting to unravel. There are the letters in her stepdad's desk, an unearthed, years-old cell phone, a strange new friend at school. . . . Whatever happened five years ago isn't over. Some people in town know more than they're saying. And somehow, Monica is at the center of it all.

There are no more cheerleaders in Sunnybrook, but that doesn't mean anyone else is safe.

About the Author:
Kara Thomas has written for everything from her high school newspaper to Warner Bros. Television. She is a true-crime addict who lives on Long Island with her husband and rescue cat. She is the author of The Darkest Corners, Little Monsters, and The Cheerleaders. To learn more about Kara and her books, visit her at kara-thomas.com or follow @karatwrites on Twitter and @kara_thomas on Instagram.

My Review:

THE CHEERLEADERS, by Kara Thomas, is a terrific murder mystery with just the right amount of intrigue on every page. Kara Thomas is a wonderful writer, engaging my imagination on page one and keeping my attention through the very last page. 

As the fifth anniversary of the cheerleaders' deaths approaches, the main character, Monica, is determined to learn the truth, because Monica doesn't believe the stories that everyone else has accepted. She knows there has to be more behind how and why her older sister died.

Monica struggles to not only find the truth, but she also struggles to find her place in the world, making some questionable choices along the way.

Some of my favorite lines:

"The empty house has been the subject of my mother's bitching. All the house is doing is existing, not bothering anyone. It's exactly the type of thing that offends my mother."

"In my head, I break down the agonizing wait for Saturday. Twenty-four hours; nine class periods; one dance team practice; one awkward Friday family dinner at Ristegio's, the Italian restaurant in town; and one restless night's sleep. All hurdles to clear before I can talk to Daphne Furman."

"...computer club boys plagued by ill-fitting jeans and cafeteria pizza breath."

"I knew what we were doing was wrong, and I didn't care because I was ready to set my perfect life on fire and walk away while it burned."

I highly recommend THE CHEERLEADERS by Kara Thomas to anyone who enjoys a twisty murder mystery. 

[I received an early copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.]

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