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The Telling Paperback – July 25, 2017
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From School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up—Lana has been living in the after—after her stepbrother and best friend Ben was murdered in front of her and his girlfriend, Maggie. Before, she spent her time working to graduate from high school and get accepted to college and hanging out with her best friend. Now, she needs to distract herself from Ben's death, so she becomes friends with The Core, a group of popular teens who drink and carry out dares. While cliff-diving at Swisher Spring, Lana finds Maggie's body buried underwater. The protagonist becomes the prime suspect, as she knows the cliffs well. Lana and her friends don't know what to think. One of Lana's classmates turns up missing. Someone's dogs are killed. Lana wonders if Ben's ghost isn't still around, taking justice for how she's been treated. This story is realistic, descriptive, and hard to put down. Lana is a likable character who is dealing with tragic loss in the best way she knows how. Told in first person, the narrative slowly reveals details to readers as Lana becomes aware of them. Teens are left wondering who could be the culprit and if Lana will discover the identity before it's too late. The secondary characters are distinctive enough to stand alone, but Lana and Ben are the real focus. Readers may anticipate the ending, but there are plenty of plot twists along the way. References to drinking and sex throughout make this appropriate for high schoolers. VERDICT Recommend for fans of realistic murder mysteries with twists and where nothing quite fits together.—Natalie Struecker, Atlantic Public Library, IA --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
“Haunting…[an] addictive novel." (Publishers Weekly)
“Will leave readers stunned and satisfied.” (Booklist)
"A neatly done murder mystery." (Kirkus Reviews)
"Lana’s got a steely edge to her narration, even in her most vulnerable moments, and her confident determination that she’s going to figure out what is going on may inspire plenty of readers to follow her." (BCCB)
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'The Telling' is a thrilling young adult mystery that will keep you guessing until the end. I'm a huge fan of mysteries and thrillers, so this book sounded right up my alley. The plot was intriguing and easily pulled me into Lana's world - both the "before" and the "after." The writing was well done with lots of detailed descriptions and vivid imagery. I could see myself alongside Lana as everything happened. Lana was a good main character - but she had one issue that bugged me. She seems obsessed with her step-brother. She's constantly thinking about him, remembering him, talking about him - even though he died a couple months ago. The way she spoke about him annoyed me and felt weird - like I said, obsessed. That really put a damper on my reading experience and I wasn't able to get as into the story as I normally would have. The author uses the first person point of view, which I love. It works very well with the book and we get to know Lana on a deeply personal level. She's realistic - flaws and all - and could've been easy to connect with (if not for the obsession thing). The plot was intriguing but overshadowed by Lana's fixation on Ben. Again, the story line would have been great - if not for Lana's seeming obsession. Overall, this was a good novel and I definitely recommend it to fans of the genre.
After Lana’s stepbrother Ben is brutally murdered she finds herself withdrawing from everything as she mourns until one night her long time crush Josh finally approaches her. Josh is a member of the “core”, the group of cool kids that Lana had never been a part of but now they let Lana into their world as she finds herself starting to heal from Ben’s passing.
One day Lana and her new friends are out swimming and when Lana dives under and sees a body. Diving down and freeing the body Lana discovers it was Maggie, her stepbrother Ben’s ex-girlfriend who police had wanted for questioning about Ben’s murder. Had the killer returned for Maggie or was something else going on?
The Telling is one of those books that absolutely sounded amazing but surprisingly when I began to read I just couldn’t find myself connecting with this one. Lana just seemed to have such a dull personality that I wasn’t getting excited to find out what had happened with her telling the tale which kept making it very easy to set this one to the side.
After a while the story seemed to pick up a bit more and made reading a bit more engaging as more began to happen. But unfortunately I also had a theory very early on that I hoped wouldn’t be that easy to figure out but in the end ended up exactly what I’d been thinking so I couldn’t help but feel a let down that it wasn’t a bit more of a twisty ride.
Overall, 2.5 stars for this one. I just didn’t find the MC that exciting and thought the ending was fairly obvious from pretty early on.
I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
I award this book 3.5 stars. I enjoyed the suspense, and the mysterious backdrop of her stepbrother and the two mysteries that seem to be connected. The prose is really nice in several places, and I read the entire book in one sitting. I sped through the chapters because I thought I knew where the story was going, but Sirowy did a good job of planting clues but then taking the story in a different way.
Lana was a hard character to root for, and I felt terrible for her best friend, who seemed to get screwed left and right. The other issue was that although I didn't guess the ending, it felt like a bit of a cop out, so I wasn't quite satisfied. This of course is just a personal opinion.
Overall, I thought a many times wonderfully written suspense/mystery novel where the intrigue and suspense building is well done, but I was a bit disappointed by the ending
Most recent customer reviews
The Telling was one of those books that I had been drawn to since I first heard it was coming out, way back...Read more