Cover Image: That Night

That Night

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Member Reviews

That Night by Cyn Balog is the story of Hailey and The Week's brothers, Kane and Declan and how they got tangled in a very deadly web of love and obsession. Sometimes, the line between love and obsession is so thin you don't know you've crossed it until someone gets hurt.

Hailey was on top of the world. She had her best friend, Kane, she had her boyfriend, Declan, and everything seemed perfect. Until it wasn't. Until Declan went into his families shed and shot himself in the head. Until she went to stay in a mental health hospital. Until, until... until. Hailey can't seem to remember what happened the day Declan died. But it turned out maybe there is also more she can't remember. But from what we learn about Declan there is no way he would have killed himself. So what happens when someone might have gotten away with murder?

I really enjoyed this book. It had a lot of emotion and mystery to it but it also had a lot of character development that I enjoyed watching. I loved the relationship dynamic and drama between Kane and Hailey, no matter how good or bad it was. I even liked the relationship between Kane and his "girlfriend" even though that was obviously toxic. The author knows how to write characters, I will always say that.

In the end, I kept going back and forth on how this book would end. I know how the author writes so I kept saying there was NO WAY this could just be a contemporary story about a boy committing suicide and I was definitely right. 

Overall, I gave the book 4.5/5 stars.
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Hailey's boyfriend committed suicide, but she isn't convinced that's the whole truth. That Night follows her journey as she uncovers the events that led up to the night of his death. 

I was pretty excited to pick up this book as I love thrillers, especially YA, but I found myself constantly checking to see how long was left before I reached the end. In theory, this is exactly the kind of story that would keep me gripped and wanting to find out more. In reality, I just wasn't that interested and I think that was due to the character building. I didn't like any of the characters, especially our main character Hailey. I couldn't relate to her at all and there were parts when I just wanted to shake her out of her stupidity.  

I have seen some really positive reviews of this book out there, so I would encourage you to read a few more reviews before making a decision. It just wasn't for me.
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This was a wild ride of a book but I enjoyed it! I really connected with the characters and was shocked at the ending.
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Enjoyed this book! Shorter than I expected but it kept me interested throughout. I also didn’t guess the ending which I usually manage to do when it comes to these types of reads.

It also gave a really good luck into high school romance & how it feels for those involved.

A quick but compelling read!
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This book did not spark my interest once i started reading it. I quickly found myself drifting off and not paying attention.
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I was able to read this within only a little over 24 hours! Why? Because this is crazy good! If you want a fantastic thriller that has clues within every page being turned, Cyn Balog has created exactly what all thriller lovers will want to read over and over again. The clues and the mystery itself had me biting my nails throughout the whole read, making me want more. To be honest, there are so many things that I want to say about this work of art, but I know that I cannot all fit them into this review. So just in general, grab a hold of this book while you can and get reading! This book is amazing and none other than the ultimate definition of a great thriller novel. Every sentence, every word, every letter, all takes part in a haunting mystery that you will finish reading in no time.
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This was a total roller coaster from beginning to end. I didn't know what to expect, and the unreliable narrator quality of the main character's narration due to her selective amnesia made it so I had no idea what to look for or how to piece things together until the big reveal. I was really sad about the overall story, but completely absorbed by it as well!
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First of all, thanks to NetGalley and Sourcebooks Fire for approving my request and sending me an eARC in exchange for a honest review.
You have to know English isn’t my first language, so feel free to correct me if I make some mistakes while writing this review.

Real rating: 3,5 stars.

Hailey's boyfriend Declan died a year ago. It was suicide, but Hailey never truly believed it because she knew Declan. No one knew him like she did and she knows what she's talking about. 
If only she could remember those previous months...

"That Night" opens with Hailey now at present time, then we follow her through the past since the moment she met Declan to the first anniversary of his death - when his mother gives her a box of his belongings and Hailey finds a blurred picture of... something with a threatening message written underneath. 

Now she's set to uncover the truth, but who can help her? Her on and off ex-best friend Luisa is ignoring her and her other lifetime best friend Kane - and Declan's stepbrother - seems to hide something from her, never telling her the whole truth.

I flew through the pages, I swear - I couldn't put it down because I was captured by the story.
Every character is morally grey, I always wondered whose mental health I should've doubt and I'll admit I was hoping the finding of that picture would have led to a creepier shade in the plot, but I was content nonetheless. 

They are teenagers left alone by their parents, free to escape from the window at night without them noticing the major issues concerning their children.
Everything is told by Hailey's perspective, so we can feel she's not a reliable narrator - and not just because she suffers from amnesia, but because she's blinded by love. 

It's a story about love, selfishness, insecurities, everything we don't know about those around us and about everything we would do for those we love. 
It's a story about the first love, about the way it scars you for better or worse, about letting go or being unable to, about the way we need and want to feel special, about the way we want "forever" and about the way our family and surroundings can influence the way we perceive kisses and sex. 

I didn't formulate hypothesis or something like that - I went with the flow, so maybe it's a little bit predictable but the very ending surprised me. 
Anyway, the more I think about it, the more I wonder exactly what happenend and which side of the story was true. 

So yeah, I think you'll enjoy this book - my rating is due only to my needing of creepier aspects in a novel and I'm still searching for the perfect mix in a mystery YA.
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At first I was on board with this book. The idea that grief can be overwhelming, derailing. We see the protagonist struggling to put her life back in order, to find a way forward after a major loss. She knows her old life is gone but hopes that if she can understand how things went so wrong she may have a way forward. I liked the idea. It's when it started to become a mystery that I began to question the plot. When she embraces the idea that the suicide was staged, my acceptance wavered.
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That Night follows Hailey as she tries to uncover the truth about what happened to her boyfriend, Declan. He was happy, a believer, it had to be something else. Hailey has selective amnesia though and it is only after she become a pseudo-Nancy Drew that she begins remembering the events leading up to Declan's passing. Kane, her best friend and Declan's step-brother, remains her steadfast friend, but as the truth is revealed it becomes harder for Hailey to distinguish from what is real and what is not. 

That Night by Cyn Balog left me feeling sad, like how could any of these people continue to interact as they were after what had happened. How was any of this allowed to happen under the watchful eye of parents and teachers and friends? Oh wait, the parents were absent, school seems to be an afterthought, and no one thought that the strange interactions of one individual were worth mentioning. Is it a gripping story? Absolutely. I didn't catch onto the big twists into quite late into the story, but by then I was already just so sad. Hailey lacks everything she needs to have to be a successful person, it's so painfully obvious, and it's sad to me that she feels like a secondary character even in her own narrative. I couldn't see how everything amounted to what it did, though I admit Hailey was supremely selfish. All her actions should have made someone help seek mental health assistance, not just throw a rug over it. 

It feels like this book was meant to be a thriller, but the mental health portion is handled in such an insensitive way that it makes it more of an uncomfortable read rather than a shocking one.
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I'm not sure why I forced myself to finish this book.  It was terrible.  The timeline was confusing, the characterizations swung between these teens acting too young and acting too old.  The plot meandered and took forever to get to the point of the mystery.  The resolution was absurd.  Thanks NetGalley for the chance, but in the end it's only one star.
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This book gripped me from the first page and well beyond the last one! Superbly written with alternate present day and flashback it kept me guessing from the vey beginning. It shows the obsessive side of first love with realistic and well developed characters and makes an unexpected and almost unreal truth totally realistic. Would 100% recommend to any reader who enjoys romance stories with a healthy dose of mystery!
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A brilliantly crafted and thrilling story about love and loss that poorly handles heavy themes like toxic relationships.

The book follows seventeen-year-old Hailey as she copes with the suicide of her boyfriend a year ago. No one will believe her when she says it wasn’t a suicide, but she’ll have to recollect her memories if she wants to prove it.

The story switches between two timelines—before and after Hailey’s boyfriend, Declan’s suicide. It’s always clearly mentioned which timeline we are at, which makes the story straightforward and interesting. The voice is crisp and snarky, and the narrative doesn’t drag. The suspense builds up from page one, and it’s an obvious page turner. That is, until the truth about the night Declan killed himself starts to unravel.

Balog never fails to keep up the intriguing voice and fast pace of the plot, but there’s so much it can cover up. As the story progressed, I couldn’t feel comfortable with it anymore. Nowhere in the story do you ever see Hailey as a fully-grown person. Her character arc was poor, and the only development she saw was through her boyfriend. Hailey was never anything more than the boys in her life, even in the very last chapter where she starts dating again, she is defined by that new boyfriend.

The ending was equally disappointing. Hailey’s been so depressed after Declan’s suicide that she cannot eat or leave her bed, or even interact with friends, and her grades are dropping. Still, what Balog focuses on to show Hailey overcoming it is her dating again. There was no personal growth for her that could make her a self-sufficient human being.

Hailey was clearly been in a toxic relationship with both her boyfriend and her best friend. The story never bothers to address it, though. Instead, it is normalized, even romanticized, showing each of the boys doing everything for Hailey. But it doesn’t show that the boys are not doing it for her, but to control her.

Hailey’s mentality along with the story-line focusing solely on her dating life might have worked in another genre where male authors condescend women to plot devices and show women’s story through the men in her life, but not in YA.

Overall, the story is good if you are taking notes on writing thrillers, but a complete mess and better avoided if you are trying to connect with the story.
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A year has passed since the death of Hailey’s boyfriend, Declan. This had a really negative impact on her social life and mental health. She’s no longer the president of Key Club, she’s been caught with alcohol in school twice, and shes been fooling around with random guys for the sole purpose of proving to herself that she can still feel.

After Declan’s alleged suicide, she was sent to some sort of mental institution (I think. Either that or just the counseling) and the medicine that she was given did detrimental things to her memory. She could no longer remember the day of and the days leading up to the death of Declan. She starts to contemplate what really happened to Declan with the reluctant help of Declan’s stepbrother and Hailey’s best friend, Kane.

I did not like Kane. He was gross, treated girls like walking body parts, and too carefree. But I could see him gradually maturing through the book so that was good.

The plot-twist was pretty shocking and I read the last 20% of this book with my eyebrows crinkled. So the suspense? It’s at upper levels.

This book had the kind of chapters with alternating timelines—one that was the days leading up to Declan’s death, and then the present time, around a year after his death. I don’t typically like this kind of format, but the timing was perfect. 

Hailey doesn’t have much of a personality, and I found it difficult to sympathize with her.
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Cyn Balog’s new book That Night was coming out and the moment I heard about it I knew I had to read it. I was a fan of her previous book, Alone, that I had reviewed and I could not wait to get my hands on this one.

I devoured this book. That is the best way I can think to describe it. Finished in approximately 4-5 hours of reading in one day, a page turner is an understatement. To start, the characters are so different and well written. Each one could be your friend, family member, or neighbor. There is someone to relate to no matter your viewpoint in life. I personally loved Declan. He was that super appealing, attractive boy next door, but also sweet and sensitive and had depth. There was layer after layer of personality to get to know as I read. I also love how a person can change when they go through something tragic, heartbreaking, or just hard for them. People’s behavior is very much controlled by their environment and the things that happen to them. I loved the point of view of Hailey because she was such an intricate character that I could not quite peg what was going on with her at any given point.

Balog writes in a way where you think you have the story figured out, but then the ending comes and you are left stunned. I had not guessed the ending, even though in my head I was convinced I had. She writes smooth, even with jumping from past to present. I quite enjoyed reading about the present and how the characters were feeling, dealing, and coping, and then the next chapter would flash back and you’d get a bit more insight into the why’s of their behavior now. Not giving anything away, but as you read tell me if you agree. I was 100% sure that Kane was shady to the core. Maybe he is? You’ll have to read. I think Balog’s way of writing this back and forth made the story that much more interesting. It was like putting together a puzzle. You could see the final outcome forming, but until that last piece was placed you had no clue what you were really looking at.

If you like a good mystery… a REALLY good mystery… intertwined with a little romance, lots of drama, a few laughs, and a ton of suspense then That Night is definitely a book to check out. Every time I read another of Cyn Balog’s books I become a bigger and bigger fan. Her writing is like none other and her stories are unique to the core. I cannot wait until the next one.
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Thank you to NetGalley for access to an ARC in exchange for an honest review. 

Cyn Balog weaves a brilliant mystery with a great twist! I enjoy an unreliable narrator and Balog does a great job achieving this literary task. 

I look forward to reading more from Balog in the future! 

Trigger Warning: Covers the topic of suicide.
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Cyn Balog blows me away more and more with every book she writes. She's written fantasy, paranormal, horror, and mystery/suspense. I love how she's not pigeonholed into one genre or another and it only makes her writing stronger. THAT NIGHT is an incredible mystery that delves into friendships, relationships, and awful, painful truths.  I also love the way the story was told... alternating between present time and the past leading up to the night of Declan's death. Balog's writing is impressive and creative, with very natural dialog among the teen characters. I will excitedly recommend this title to pretty much anyone who will listen to me.
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Such a good thriller and brilliant character study. I loved how the relationships were so complex in this book. There is a bit of unreliable narrator plot stuff going on—I kind of saw it coming as I’ve read Cyn Balog’s previous work, but still… A great mystery with a solid twist.


Caution: you might be up late reading this one…
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**ARC provided by NetGalley**

This novel was so many different things—it was heartbreaking, suspenseful, but also real. I found the main female character, Hailey, very easy to relate to. She went through serious heartbreak losing her boyfriend, struggled with mental health issues, and had typical teenage friend drama. I found myself always siding with Hailey, even after finding out things that would make many people turn away from her. 

I think the author did an excellent job crafting the story so that you are never really sure *exactly* what happened when Declan died—much like I'm sure you would feel if you had to go through that exact experience yourself. I really appreciated the characters, plot, and emotions that went into writing this book. 

Overall, I definitely enjoyed it! I've been on a suspenseful/mystery-ish kick, and this was very satisfying for me.
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Weaving seamlessly back and forth in time, That Night by Cyn Balog is a compelling young adult mystery.

  One year after her boyfriend Declan Weeks’ suicide, Hailey Ward is still struggling to make sense of his death. The past year has not been easy for her since she spent time as inpatient at a psychiatric facility. Although back in school, Hailey is drinking and self-harming in an attempt to stop her emotional pain. She is also still trying to recover the memories she has suppressed about the weeks leading up to Declan’s death.  Equally confusing is her uneasy relationship with her longtime friend and Declan’s stepbrother Kane. But what Hailey finds most upsetting is the troubling discovery of a photo bearing an ominous message in Declan’s belongings. Hailey becomes even more convinced her deeply devout boyfriend’s death might be murder. But will her slowly returning memories bolster her supposition?

  Despite her hospitalization, Hailey has still not come to terms with Declan’s death.  After seeing the photograph, she becomes insistent in her quest to uncover the truth. Kane is reluctantly helpful but Hailey resents how easily he has moved on. She is extremely distressed by some of the memories that gradually return in the months after the anniversary of his suicide.  Is Hailey fully prepared to handle the shocking details of what really happened during the weeks before Declan died?

  That Night is an intriguing young adult mystery. Through a series of flashbacks, Hailey’s life in the present is cleverly interwoven with her romance with Declan in the past. With an absolutely unanticipated stunning plot twist, Cyn Balog brings this riveting novel to jaw-dropping conclusion. A very engrossing young adult that I recommend to older teen and adult readers due to content such as suicide, self-harming, and underage drinking.
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