Review: A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder

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Olivia Cornell

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson.

Olivia Cornell, Reporter

Looking for a new read? Mystery-filled and full of shocking plot twists, Holly Jackson’s A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder is sure to draw you into the small town of Fairview, Connecticut.

Synopsis

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?

My Thoughts

This book immediately draws the reader in. The setting is established very early on in the story, and it’s an interesting one: a small New England town that has suffered devastating events.

Pippa, the main character, has a determination and grit like no other, and is very passionate about seeking out the truth. Joined by a witty sidekick Ravi, the two characters’ personalities bounce off each other perfectly. Since Pippa has decided to dissect this case for her senior capstone project, she has a number of people from town she must question, allowing the reader to discover even more captivating characters.

The writing style of this novel is one that keeps me, as a reader, on the edge of my seat. Almost all of the chapters are four to eight pages long, which lets you breeze through the nail-biting mystery, and almost each one has a log entry written by Pip, where she details her process through interview transcripts, “persons of interest” lists, and more.

To avoid spoilers in this review, I won’t elaborate too much on the plot, other than that it is very complex. However, this complexity is perfect for a mystery. By the end of the story, the reader will be surprised to see how many things tie together. 

After rereading some parts of the book, and after reading Caroline Hooton’s review (spoilers in this review) on it, it is important to note that some scenes are not necessarily true in relation to the rules of law. However, this problem does not resurface a lot, and it was only noticed under strict re-reading of certain areas.

If you end up enjoying this book as much as I did, you will be happy to know that A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder is a trilogy, with two other books following it. (Good Girl, Bad Blood (#2), As Good As Dead (#3))

Content Warning

Like most young adult books, and especially in mystery genres, A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder includes many sensitive topics that may be disturbing for some readers to handle. 

Before reading, consider heavy topics that are covered in the story.

Similar Books

Books with similar plots and characters are listed below:

  • One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus
  • The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
  • The Wickerlight by Mary Watson