I am a little late to the party with this one but after hearing amazing things about Holly Jackson’s debut novel A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder, I had to buy it and see what everyone was talking about. And it did not disappoint!
The case is closed. Five years ago, schoolgirl Andie Bell was murdered by Sal Singh. The police know he did it. Everyone in town knows he did it. But having grown up in the same small town that was consumed by the murder, Pippa Fitz-Amobi isn’t so sure. When she chooses the case as the topic for her final year project, she starts to uncover secrets that someone in town desperately wants to stay hidden. And if the real killer is still out there, how far will they go to keep Pip from the truth? – Synopsis from Goodreads.
Jackson’s gripping and witty debut novel brings a new element to the world of YA mysteries. It follows Pippa Fitz-Amobi’s quest to solve the mystery of the Andie Bell case as she believes that Sal Singh, the main suspect is truly innocent. But how far will she go to prove it?
Pip’s intelligence and individual sense of humour are excellently illustrated by Jackson and that makes her even more likeable. The dubious town of Little Kilton has suspense and drama at every turn and is cleverly recounted in Pip’s research logs. The innovative style of using an EPQ (Extended Project Qualification) to frame the novel was very nostalgic for me as I completed one when I was at college, though it was not as exciting (or dangerous) as Pip’s! I really enjoyed the style and have never read anything like it before.
Pip’s sleuthing uncovers a lot more than she intends it to, and with someone hot on her heels, the plot begins to thicken. I was immersed in the novel and read it in a couple of days, my mind creating a metaphorical murder board like the one Pip makes in the novel. If you have ever wanted to solve a murder this would be a good place to start!
“But sometimes remembering isn’t for yourself, sometimes you do it just to make someone else smile”
Whether you’re a fan of YA, mysteries or YA mysteries, I would highly recommend A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder! The complex twists made for a captivating read. I can’t wait to get my hands on the sequel Good Girl, Bad Blood!