Author: April Henry

Friday, December 14, 2018

Some Mystery and Bland Characters: The Lonely Dead by April Henry

Posted by 1 Comment

I received this book for free from Henry Holt and Co. in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Some Mystery and Bland Characters: The Lonely Dead by April HenryThe Lonely Dead by April Henry
Published by Henry Holt and Co. on January 29th, 2019
Genres: Mystery, Paranormal, YA
Source: Henry Holt and Co.
Buy on Amazon

A killer is on the loose, and only one girl has the power to find him. But in this genre-bending YA thriller, she must first manage to avoid becoming a target herself.

For Adele, the dead aren’t really dead. She can see them and even talk to them. But she’s spent years denying her gift. When she encounters her ex best friend Tori in a shallow grave in the woods and realizes that Tori is actually dead -- that gift turns into a curse. Without an alibi, Adele becomes the prime suspect in Tori’s murder. She must work with Tori’s ghost to find the real killer. But what if the killer finds Adele first?

Master mystery-write April Henry adds a chilling paranormal twist to this incredibly suspenseful young adult novel. 

Ugh I don’t even know how to word as I write this review. I’ve written and deleted the first sentence about a 100 times. BUT. I guess. Here is the thing, I read an April Henry novel years ago, liked it, and read a BUNCH by her this year. Just looking at the books in the chronological order they were published, it seems that the books have gotten progressively worse? Which is to say, that her later books have lost that kick a lot of her earlier books had.

If you’ve been a fan for a while and coming to this book because you have come to expect some thrill and some mystery from April Henry, you should stay. If you want anything more than that, like character development and to read about people you don’t want to punch just a little, you should maybe scoot along?? IDK. If I were reading my own review, I’d probably choose to read the book because sometimes I ~am~ just craving a quick mystery to take off the edge but The Lonely Dead really doesn’t have much else going for it besides that April Henry basically knows how to write a mystery.

For starters, the girl who died is a bitch. We are supposed to like her better by the end of the novel, but she is a racist bitch and I am NOT HERE FOR THAT SHIT. I will tolerate bullies, I will not tolerate bullies that bully girls by pointing out their darker skin. NOPE. Mind you, there is all but one line that alludes to this but that should give you an idea about the kind of person dear Tori was.

As I’ve grown up and become more aware, I’ve also become more sensitive to books that do the whole “MC is thought to have a mental illness (usually schizophrenia) but can actually see things others cannot.” I think it’s such a fine line to walk and sometimes if not done carefully, it can seem dismissive of people who actually have those mental illnesses and to mental health specialists. I will give April Henry the credit she is due by saying she really does seem to acknowledge this as a larger issue. It did seem a little unnatural, the way it is incorporated within the context of the novel, but I do appreciate the distinction.

As for the actual MC, Adele is SO BLAND. Her entire existence is ‘woe is me’ and she is so dense sometimes. I am pretty sure she is a plot device and not an actual character, lol. So is basically everyone else in this book.

The plot does have a little zing to it in that I became invested enough to continue turning pages even though the characters were basically all cardboard caricatures. I wanted to know who killed Tori and I wanted to the po-po to finally catch the right people. I was also slightly invested in Charlie (who is a sort-of love interest) but he barely had a presence in the book.

UGh. I need to stop talking/typing because this review has also become extremely bland and I am sure anyone reading this wants this torture to end so I WILL SHUT UP SOON. BUT, if you are interested in this book, I say read it if you’re just looking for a quick, semi-engaging read. We need those kinds of books too. If you want actual character development or to have any interest in any of their lives, you should probably not read this book.


2.5 Hot Espressos

Review: Blood Will Tell by April Henry

Review: Blood Will Tell by April Henry

Posted by on 06/01/2015 • 0 Comments

I love a good mystery, and I did enjoy the first book in this series. I guess it’s not really a series as much as companion novels, but whatever. This was actually a really cool one since you actually know rather quickly who the killer is, but all evidence points to the wrong person. So instead of trying to figure out who did it, you are trying to find out how it all points to someone who is innocent. Much like the first book, this is told in numerous POV’s, which took me a bit away from the story, but it also gives you a full picture of what is going on. I have to say, I had no clue how in the world the evidence could be possible until…

Review: The Body In The Woods by April Henry

Review: The Body In The Woods by April Henry

Posted by on 06/09/2014 • 21 Comments

The Body In The Woods is a fast paced thriller that is able to pass off as enjoyable if you suspend logic and just go along for the ride. But, when you sit down and really think about the details there is so much that is unbelievable that I can’t really recommend it to fellow readers.

In this novel we get the three main perspectives of Ruby, Alexis and Nick but we also get a few random chapters that are told from the ominous perspective of the killer himself. As far as the 3 kids go, I can’t say that I connected with any of them in any way. This is in part due to the fact that the story is told in the third person (which always leaves me…

Review: The Night She Disappeared

Posted by on 03/30/2012 • 28 Comments

The Night She DisappearedApril HenryRelease date: March 13th, 2012by Henry Holt and Co.

Goodreads / Purchase

Gabie drives a Mini Cooper. She also works part time as a delivery girl at Pete’s Pizza. One night, Kayla—another delivery girl—goes missing. To her horror, Gabie learns that the supposed kidnapper had asked if the girl in the Mini Cooper was working that night. Gabie can’t move beyond the fact that Kayla’s fate was really meant for her, and she becomes obsessed with finding Kayla. She teams up with Drew, who also works at Pete’s. Together, they set out to prove that Kayla isn’t dead—and to find her before she is.

*A copy was provided by Raincoast Books for review purposes* The Night She Disappeared, with only 240 pages, is a short but…