Mystery novel proves to be a page turner

Balance of normal life, crime-solving makes book realistic


Fair use from Random House.

Isra Mohamed

When I first picked up “A Good Girl’s Guide To Murder” by Holly Jackson, I thought that it was going to be a cliche teenage mystery book, but I was blown by how well the author had written this book. 

This book is set in 2019, and it takes us on one girl and her journey of uncovering the truth about what really happened to a girl in her school. As the truth begins to unravel, there are lots of unexpected turns that lead the reader to an ending that they may have not desired.

One of the first things I noticed about the book was the format that it was written in. Usually, books are written by one narrator and the book goes on forever. But, in this book, there were journal excerpts from the narrator as she wrote about her research in trying to solve a murder. This was a really good attention grabber and gave us deeper knowledge of the main character.

The book also included transcripts from voice recordings that the main character Pippa got from people she interviewed that she believed would help her find justice for a wrongfully convicted person. The excerpts made the book seem more realistic instead of it seeming over-exaggerated and dramatic like other mystery books that I have read in the past.

Another thing that caught my eye in this book was that instead of the focus only being around finding the suspect, it also had typical high school problems like studying for the ACT, writing college applications and picking out the perfect dress for homecoming which again helped the book seem more realistic. The author made sure to have the perfect balance of crime-solving while also writing about a normal 17-year-old girl’s life who happened to be solving a murder. 

If you like a good murder solving book which is also set in a teenage girl’s life, then this has to be the book for you. The cliffhangers as Pippa seems to find herself closer and closer to the truth will have you flipping pages for hours. This book is very realistic and does not in any way seem fake. 

“A Good Girl’s Guide To Murder”: ★★★★☆