It’s Spring Break of senior year. Anna, her boyfriend Tate, her best friend Elise, and a few other close friends are off to a debaucherous trip to Aruba that promises to be the time of their lives.
Give the blurb this far and it sounds like a typical teen cliché, not my thing at all. But then…
But when Elise is found brutally murdered, Anna finds herself trapped in a country not her own, fighting against vile and contemptuous accusations.
Anna sets out to find her friend’s killer, but in the process finds all her friendships unravelling, while both her and Tate seem to have the blame pinned on them in the midst of this mess. Not only does the entire island and watching world believe she’s guilty, they believe she’s dangerous.
The blurb and the cover do not do this utter mindfuck an ounce of justice. It flashes between the holiday, the beginnings of her relationship with others in the group, the trial, and so on. There’s no singular time line dealt with but, bit by bit, the story unravels.
It’s a really interesting book when you look at how the media can portray someone vs. how events actually unfolded; Halloween photos taken out of context, school assignments presented as proof of a disturbed personality. More so, it shows how the media can manipulate things, with the same show changing their presenting opinion based on how the tides seem to face.
It’s so on point it’s kind of disturbing. And, yes, it has some little things that can irk you as you go, but then – that last quarter or so? Masterclass on sealing a book up, on making it stick in your mind.
There are some unanswered questions (and if any of you have followed my reviews for any length of time, you’ll know I hate unanswered questions, but I became so stunned and swept up by this book in the end, which felt surprising enough in itself, that I can forgive that. Jeez.