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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

#allthebookreviews: All These Beautiful Strangers by Elizabeth Klehfoth @wmmorrowbooks @lizklehfoth

All These Beautiful Strangers
by Elizabeth Klehfoth

Thanks so much to William Morrow for these gifted copies!
Another #allthebookreviews recommendation for you!

Publisher:  William Morrow
Publish Date:  July 10, 2018
448 Pages
Genres:  YA, Mystery

In the last day of summer, Grace Fairchild, the beautiful young wife of real estate mogul Allister Calloway, vanished from the family’s lake house without a trace, leaving behind her seven-year old daughter, Charlie, and a slew of unanswered questions.

Years later, seventeen-year-old Charlie still struggles with the dark legacy of her family name and the mystery surrounding her mother. Determined to finally let go of the past, she throws herself into life at Knollwood, the prestigious New Englandschool she attends. Charlie quickly becomes friends with Knollwood’s “it” crowd.

Charlie has also been tapped by the A’s—the school’s elite secret society well known for terrorizing the faculty, administration, and their enemies. To become a member of the A’s, Charlie must play The Game, a semester-long, diabolical high-stakes scavenger hunt that will jeopardize her friendships, her reputation, even her place at Knollwood.

As the dark events of past and present converge, Charlie begins to fear that she may not survive the terrible truth about her family, her school, and her own life. 

My Review:

I love it when a debut novel, especially one in the YA thriller category (which is starting to boom these days), really sucks me in.  Admittedly, this did run a little slow at the beginning, but then around 100 pages or so in, I didn't want to put this one down.

Like most YA thrillers I've read, this is just fun and entertaining.  As discussed with my fellow Bookstagrammer, Amy, it definitely has Gossip Girl/Skulls vibe and these are guilty pleasures for me, so how could I NOT like this?!

I'm always fascinated with boarding schools - I went to a community college and commuted so I never really got that dorm room life and feel like I missed out on something at some point.  However, in reading about them, they're almost full of drama and cliquish mannerisms as this book also relays - so maybe I didn't really miss out on much!

I did like Charlie's character.  We've all done some sketchy things as teenagers - especially when wanting to be a part of the IN crowd (which almost always is indulgent in egotism, bullying and atrocious behavior - at least in books, right?).  It's how we come out of these incidents and what we learn from them that make our character at the end. (No pun intended).

I will say that I was more fascinated with Grace's storyline and wanted a LOT more of that.  As Klehfoth brings everything together, I wasn't necessarily surprised with the outcome but I was impressed with how cleanly she pulled it all together.  It didn't feel rushed or mashed up like I've found a few books as of late.  I especially find this so impressive with debut novels.

I will definitely be looking for more from this author.  This is a genre I'm falling in love with quickly.


Jessica's Review:

When I had read the synopsis for this one, it definitely piqued my interest. I have seen it compared to PRETTY LITTLE LIARS and GOSSIP GIRL (both of which I haven’t read or seen…I know, I know I definitely need to remedy that). I have seen this one being categorized as a Young Adult novel, but to me it didn’t read like one. This is a solid debut and I’m excited to see what she comes out with next!
The prologue definitely caught my attention and then I found myself getting sucked into the characters. Years ago, the young wife of a successful real estate mogul, Allister Calloway, disappeared from the family’s home without a trace. Her daughter, Charlie, was a child at the time and was left with so many unanswered questions.
A decade later, Charlie is determined to move on from her complicated past and focuses on school. She is quickly recruited by the elite school’s secret society, the A’s. What they refer to as The Game added a level of drama to the story and I really enjoyed seeing where that would go.
There are so many secrets that were so expertly woven together throughout the story! We go from different perspectives and timelines without getting lost. Present day with Charlie, in the past with Grace (her mother) and another mystery surrounding a classmate’s apparent suicide.
There is plenty to go around in ALL THESE BEAUTIFUL STRANGERS to keep you flipping those pages!
4/5 stars!

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