I received a copy of this book from Netgalley for an honest review.
This was probably my least favorite McManus book. It still had some good parts but I found myself skimming quite a bit, which is too bad because I really liked the Cousins. The twist at the end was just kinda weird and I wasn't really invested in the mystery.
I’ve read and loved every Karen M. McManus book…that is until this one.
This book suffers from several issues: a convoluted and often overly cliched plot, boring characters that are hard to care about, pages and pages of boredom broken up by underwhelming “twists” and conflicts. Ultimately, this book feels very much like someone bored One of Us is Lying, took out all the good stuff, changed some details, and said that’ll work.
One of the biggest let downs was the secrets that Cal, Ivy, and Mateo were hiding. In particular Ivy’s childish prank that ruined an entire family’s livelihood because she was jealous of her brother. Once it finally came out, I found myself rolling my eyes. I’ve really enjoyed her other books, but even religious mystery/McManus readers should just skip this one.
I've really enjoyed all of Karen M McManus' mysteries and this one was no exception. Engaging, highly readable, and some twists and turns that will keep readers guessing until the end.
Before I get into the book itself I just want to talk about the cover design and the amazing job that the artist has done to embody the McManus theme in each of her books. You can always point out a McManus book from a mile away with its tell-tale reds and scratched out faces and I’m here for it! Now to the subject at hand:
As a McManus Stan I think I came into this book expecting too much. The premise was there after all, three old friends briefly reunite to play hooky, only to become murder suspects when they witness the death of a classmate that they all had a personal connection to. Sign me up!
The truth is there was some disconnect between the actual plot and the synopsis and it almost felt like I was reading a story based on the synopsis rather than the other way around. The stakes didn’t seem as high in this book as they should have been and the revelations as to what happened felt…lacking. The murder mystery part of this high school drama wasn’t as strong as McManus’ previous novels and it showed in the slow plot and tacked on ending.
That being said the characters were prime McManus as we really got to see the relationships each of the characters had to one another and to their families. It is what McManus arguably does best: the development of characters and their connections within the context of a mystery. My only caveat is that not all MCs are made equal and Cal’s storyline and development seemed to take a backseat to Mateo and Ivy’s. At times I even forgot he was along for the ride.
Now was this the best McManus book? No. I’d probably rate it 3rd behind One of Us is Lying and The Cousins especially since it took me awhile to actually get into it. That being said if you’re a McManus fan or love a fun high schoolers try to solve a murder plots I’d definitely give You’ll be the Death of Me a try!
Thank you to Netgalley, Karen M. McManus, and Random House Children’s Books for the advanced read of You’ll be the Death of Me in exchange for an honest review.
Received a digital ARC of this book via NetGalley.
Ferris Buller meets murder mystery. Had suspicions of who the suspects could have been. I was wrong on most. It’s a shame like zero adults were involved in helping the teens. Wish there was more justice. God the ending seems like there could be a sequel. That ending! Another McManus book that has blown me away.
I have enjoyed Karen McManus's other novels so when I saw You'll Be The Death of Me on NetGalley, I requested it right away and really enjoyed reading this book. Ivy, Mateo, and Cal were friends years ago, but since they have been in high school they have gone their own ways not able to get over hurt feelings, misunderstandings, and changes in interests.. But as the story opens, they are suddenly back together and in a Ferris Buehler type of move, they head to the city together, however, unlike Ferris, they have to solve a murder.
This is a great YA novel with mysterious, authority figures you don't know if you can trust, and a little romance thrown in. I will highly recommend this to students!
After high-strung Ivy looses the student council election to someone who ran as a joke, she is humiliated and doesn't want to return to school the next day for her competitors victory speech. In the parking lot, she runs into her old childhood friends, Mateo and Cal who agree to a day in Boston instead of attending school. As they're walking down the street, they spot another student skipping, and decide to follow him to see what he's up to. They quickly realize this may not have been the best idea, when they stumble upon the crime scene of a murder. All three are connected to the dead body in some way, and all are hiding secrets that end up coming out in the end.
I liked how this was told over the span of one day, it was a lot of fun trying to solve the murder along these three characters. I liked the alternating POVs between the three, it was interesting to learn about their backstories, and how they became, and ultimately stopped being friends. I like how they all had their own issues they were trying to deal with alongside the mystery. I felt that the pacing was a bit slow in the beginning, but it did pick up a bit around the half way mark.
I was able to guess the killer pretty early on, so that was a bit disappointing... I still had a fun time reading, but I don't think this is one I will ever revisit.
The latest Karen McManus book is..... fine. Definitely not her strongest work. I felt like it was a throwaway story. The biggest problem is that this book takes place over 24 hours. So the relationships between the characters don't have enough time to develop. There are also decisions made by characters in this book that just made no sense. While teens will like it, it felt sloppy to me. There were some good compelling sections, but then it was surrounded by blah.
This face-paced thriller for teens centers on three former close friends named Ivy, Mateo, and Cal. Ironically, all three of them run into each other one morning and decide to skip school. Their reunion leads to them coming across a dead body. One of them is mistaken as the possible killer and the book chapters mainly have the reader watching them going from one scary situation to another. The varied families in the story are present and supportive, helping to balance out the choices of the teens and their consequences.
This novel is for teens who like quick transitions and snarky conversation. There is a social media element in which two fellow school members run a YouTube channel and sensationalize the crime. A roller coaster of a "second chance romance" is present in the book, but is not key to the main plot.
I mainly listened to the released audiobook of this title. The three friends are betrayed by three main voice actors and another creates the voices for the YouTube excerpts. I recommend the audiobook as a supplement or alternative to the physical novel. Thank you to Random House Children's Books and NetGalley for the
e-galley. My ratings and reviews are my own.
TW/CW: murder scene; mentions of a possible harmful student and teacher connection; discussion of selling and use of drugs; physical assault on page; scene with a gun
I cannot get enough of Karen McManus! My students cannot get enough of Karen McManus! You'll Be the Death of Me is the perfect amount of thriller and suspense for high school and upper middle school students.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an advanced copy to preview for my library.
Another classic Karen McManus mystery! Extremely fast paced and you won't want to put it down! A must purchase and a must read
First line: I respect a good checklist, but I’m beginning to think my mother went overboard.
Summary: Ivy lost the student council election for senior class president to the class clown, Brian “Boney” Mahoney. She is desperate not to go to school after her loss. And when she runs into two of her friends from middle school, Mateo and Cal, they reminisce over the best day of their lives. The day that they skipped school together and became friends.
With the bright idea of trying to rekindle that day, the three decide to head into Boston. But as visit an unfamiliar neighborhood they spot none other than Boney Mahoney. Ivy, angered that he would skip the assembly for his election, she decides to confront him. As they follow him into an empty building they suddenly find him dead on the floor in an upstairs room. Before they can decide what to do the sound of sirens comes to their ears. Rather than being caught with the dead body, they flee the building.
However, as more information about Boney’s death emerges they find that they may have stumbled into something that will be very hard to get out of.
My Thoughts: As with McManus’ other books, this one takes the reader on a wild ride. I enjoyed all the twists and turns throughout the story. It gave me a Ferris Bueller’s Day Off vibe mixed with Pretty Little Liars. It was a quick read and/or listen. I flew through the story, needing to know what happened next. Part of me guessed at the ending but I felt it was a reach so I did not consider it too strongly. But when it was revealed it made lots of sense.
I don’t know about anybody else but the donut shop that Cal takes the group to sounds delightful. It reminds me the Voodoo Donuts with their quirky combinations and experiments with flavor. If you haven’t experienced Voodoo then definitely add it to your list of places to eat before you die!
FYI: Trigger warnings: death and drug use.
This YA 'thriller' was more mystery than thriller, and while it was perfectly fine, it was pretty weak compared to McManus's earlier books, particularly her debut and its sequel.
I was instantly sold when I read Ferris Bueller's Day Off but with a murder...a book couldn't be MORE up my alley. Karen McManus is a master of YA mystery and I think she is one of the main reasons for the genre becoming more popular. This wasn't my favorite of hers but it had so many elements I enjoyed; interesting characters, a good mystery that isn't too obvious off the bat, and an easy to follow storyline that takes place over just one day! It was an easy enjoyable read as an adult, and I think teens and regular YA readers would devour this!
LOVE LOVE LOVE Karen McManus! This book was no different. The mystery and twists and turns of this book keep you on edge. I couldn't go to sleep until I finished it! I have read everything that she has written that is available to me. Huge fan!
You’ll Be the Death of Me is a young adult contemporary suspense mystery by Karen M. McManus. This line of the book blurb totally sold me- “It’s Ferris Bueller’s Day Off with murder when three old friends relive an epic ditch day, and it goes horribly–and fatally–wrong.” You’ll Be the Death of Me was a crazy read from start to finish and I really enjoyed it. You’ll Be the Death of Me finds our three used to be friends, as they run into each other as they are ditching school, and the day takes insane turn after turn from here.
We meet our main characters, Ivy, Cal and Mateo. They used to be great friends, but as is often the case, they have drifted apart throughout the years, and they each now have their own thing going on, including their own secrets to try and keep hidden. While ditching school, they somehow happen to witness one of their classmates get murdered, and they find themselves as main suspects from the police. While I thoroughly enjoyed the wild ride that this book took me on, I will admit that the scenarios sometimes felt a little out there. But if you just go with it and accept each of premises as is, I think you will really enjoy reading You’ll Be the Death of Me. It certainly made me glad that I never skipped school.
I liked watching our three used to be friends reconnect, and I had fun trying to guess what each of their secrets would be. You’ll Be the Death of Me is a standalone read, so it does wrap up neatly at the end of the book, and the pacing of the book clipped along at a steady fast pace. There was always something happening to move the story forward, which I appreciated. Overall, this was a wild murder mystery. I enjoyed it.
McManus is popular with our high school students and is pretty much an 'autobuy' at this point. This stand-alone mystery is great, but not her best, in my opinion. Maybe I've read too many of them? I'd recommend it to students if her other titles are checked out. I wasn't totally compelled to want to solve the mystery this time. The characters are fun and relatable and I do appreciate her twists at the end and the stand alone aspect of the book.
Thanks so much for the ARC!
I have read all of McManus' previous books and enjoyed them a lot. This one fell a little flat for me. I really liked the concept but I felt the action dragged a little and then was resolved quickly. I will recommend to fans of McManus, but it's not the best book to start with if you aren't already a fan..
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher I was able to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
You’ll be the Death of Me by Karen McManus is the author’s 5th book and similar to her previous, it’s a mystery.
The book starts with previous best friends Cal, Mateo and Ivy running into each other in the school parking lot and deciding to play hooky, each for their own reasons. While doing so they see another classmate of theirs and when they decide to follow him their day goes from “meh” to “someone should really, probably call the police, please call the police already” when they find him dead.
While the three try to unravel just what happened they also unravel how and why their friendship fell apart and reveal their own secrets in the meantime as they try to figure out just what is going on and their own ties to the dead student.
Fun, quick easy read. Maybe not my favorite of the authors but her writing can easily draw you in and keep you following along until you hit the finish line.
I liked all three of our main characters, not easy to really get a lot of development because the main story spans a day so you’re not going to get any supreme growth or changes in them, it is easy to see where and how things went wrong when their friendship first fell apart and the work they’re putting in now for it at the end. Would recommend for someone who wants an easy going mystery read.
Rating is more a 3.5, rounding up to 4.
First of all, thanks for the free book, @PRHGlobal @prhinternational in exchange of an honest review.
I have to say that this author is able to catch my attention in few chapters, this was no exception. Having already read One of Us is Lying (plus sequel), Two can keep a secret and The Cousins, I enjoyed so much the new structur of this book: in fact, the entire story develops itself in only one day.
The main characters are, as always, different from one another with personal stories that make them a little bit "grey". Yes, they're good people, but they make mistakes too (little o big ones) that in a way or another are related to the main plot, and it's always so interesting gradually seeing how they affect the present events o have had a great influence in previous ones.
Gorgeously written, I wasn't sure almost until the end who the main villain was.. .and that closure?! I love that kind of cliffhangers, but now I'm dying to know what has happened next!
I'm ready to be suprised (again).