Cover Image: Can I Trust Her?

Can I Trust Her?

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Member Reviews

Thrillers and YA - two perfectly matched genres, and this is a perfect example. The two main characters are excellently written, each with a poignant back story and a fierce love for one another which can definitely be felt; they certainly bring the mystery they're investigating to life. I really felt part of this story, which isn't easily done, and I just thought it was fantastic all round - with a cracking twist too.
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Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for providing me with a digital copy of this book, in exchange for an honest review.

This YA mystery novel focuses on a high school "accident" that left a well-loved girl dead by the bottom of the stairs, but eventually, the two protagonists begin to wonder if this depressing circumstance could be considered an accident at all. Especially since this "well-loved" girl was not as popular as she appeared to be. There is romantic turmoil, as this story contains a second-chance sapphic relationship and these two girls begin to gradually pick up the pieces of their broken bond, all while attempting to solve the "accident" that they both agreed is far closer to a successful murderous attempt. 

I honestly really wanted to love this book, but my never-ending streak of being picky while reading YA mystery has struck yet again. I did not connect with either the characters or the story itself, which made it a bit difficult for me to read at times. The pacing felt a bit jarring at times, especially sometimes when the mood was slightly off-put by the flashback scenes, and even though I was not fully invested in the mystery itself, the secrets were a bit predictable and that brought me out of the suspenseful atmosphere while I was reading. The ending as well felt a bit anti-climactic and I was left with an empty feeling when I finished the story, but I am remaining hopeful that the sequel will fill that pit and maybe even provide me with a new light on this plot and its characters. 

Overall, I do think that this is really well-done for a debut novel and I strongly believe that the author will produce ever better books as they continue, so even though I gave this book a 2.5 star rating, I will still read the sequel because of the investment that I did develop towards this series. I am grateful to Netgalley and the publishers for providing me with the opportunity to read this book.
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*Thank you NetGalley and publishers for the ARC. All thoughts and opinions are my own*

I enjoyed this book and that's likely because I'm a fan of true crime, mysteries, etc. This novel follows Katie and Virginia as they try and solve the murder of one of their classmates. Katie and Virginia used to love each other and are now drawn together to work this case. 

I liked the storyline surrounding the search for the murderer. I can't say I was a huge fan of the second chance romance. As other reviewers pointed out, I didn't love that one of the characters was in a relationship and cheating on that partner. I don't always enjoy these types of storylines. 

The writing was great. I'm excited to read future books by Frances Lucas.
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Murder or Accident? Love or Heartbreak? . . .

Oooh this book was filled with so many things: murder, mystery, deception, family drama and trauma, culture, heartbreak and love. I really enjoyed the way the author wrote the MC’s past into the present using the girl’s different perspectives to show what lead them to their current situation. Their lives were changed in heart-aching ways, because people couldn’t be true to themselves but ultimately love wins. The mystery in the story was also well written as it kept a reader guessing and wondering who was the culprit, reminding me a bit of Veronica Mars or Nancy Drew. I really look forward to more in this series and this cute crime solving couple.
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This mystery YA book was an enjoyable read as we dive right into the story with the death of a classmate. Was it an accident or was it a murder? I love how our main characters compliment each other and have the history of trying to solve mysteries. So when Katie returns after some time away and a fellow student dies, it doesn't take much for Virginia to convince Katie to investigate it with her.

This book is great for everybody that loves a good mystery with a little sapphic on the side.
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Virginia and Katie are former girlfriends who team up to solve the mystery of their classmate Marisol's suspicious death. This YA mystery is set in Anchorage where Virgina and Katie are high school students. 
This book is sure to be a page turner for YA readers that enjoy crime solving and sapphic themes. Although the main characters could have had more development, they are intriguing. The twists and turns in the plot will keep readers engaged and wondering what will happen next.
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I enjoyed this book, but felt like I wanted more depth to the characters. But also the end felt a little rushed and could’ve been told better. Other than that, the book was good. I enjoyed the mystery and the two main characters. I really don’t have too much to say about this book, it was good but I don’t know if it’s one I’d recommend to many people.
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•	Mystery/Thriller
•	Second Chance
•	LGBTQIA+
Virginia and Katie are amateur detectives and girlfriends, until Katie’s dad makes them move away from Alaska. Three years go by and Katie's back with a story. Oh, and she believes that their past relationship “wasn’t right… or natural”. However, there has been a murder at the school of a girl who was universally hated, and the police are trying to say it was an accident. Will these two reconcile and trust each other enough to find the killer?

I’m not generally one for mysteries or thrillers, but this book captivated me. There were so many elements in the plot to keep you guessing. I loved the side characters, Matty, Yoon-hi, Lilly, Tally and the girls’ families. They made the story feel whole. The little snippets of facts about Alaska throughout and in the Author’s Notes did not go unnoticed. I had no idea about the 2005 same sex legal case that granted same sex couples equal protection as heterosexual couples in regards to health, pension, and insurance benefits. I cannot wait for Is She Lying? next year!
Thank you to NetGalley, Bella Books, and Frances Lucas for the Digital ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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This was a really good book! Virginia and her ex-girlfriend, Katie, have to find a way to work together to solve the murder of a classmate, and along the way reminisce on the love they once shared. 
While this book was very cute, the murder-mystery component felt like it fell a little flat at times. It was good, it just wasn't as nuanced as some other murder-mystery books I've read and really enjoyed. However, looking at it as a queer YA romance novel, this book was great. 
Some of the scenes did feel a bit rushed or forced, but overall it was very well written. In particular, I appreciate the way Frances Lucas incorporated struggles such as internalized homophobia, domestic abuse, racism, and America's poor treatment of indigenous communities - addressing each contributed to the plot in a positive way, but the plot itself was not dependent upon these issues. Very well done.
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A cute and gripping mystery that I think young adults will really engage with. I couldn't put it down and read it in one sitting.
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This was an interesting read. Two high schoolers Virginia and Katie who used to be girlfriends team up to figure out whether one of their most disliked fellow students death was accidental or murder. 
This read almost like a Nancy Drew novel and since I was always a fan of Nancy Drew, I just went with the narrative. 😊 Aside from the mystery there’s some additional family and lesbian coming out drama which added some interesting perspective. I thought Lucas kept the mystery going well that it kept me engaged throughout. 
I think this book straddles the line between YA and middle school and for that age group will probably work really well. For a debut author this was great opening book. 3.5⭐️S

Thank you Net Galley and Bella Books for an ARC in exchange for an honest review
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This was a fun and compelling YA thriller/mystery. My students crave stories like this, and they will definitely enjoy this one.
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Can I Trust Her follows two high school girls, Virginia and Katie, as they try to solve both the strange death of one of their largely disliked classmates, but also the disappearance of another classmate - the sister of Katie's boyfriend. As the two stories meet, the love between former girlfriends Katie and Virginia is rekindled, showcasing the resiliency of teens in the face of so much heartache.

I loved this story! I was rooting for Virginia and Katie from the beginning, as their story was initially told in flashbacks to when the girls were in middle school and first falling in love, interspersed between shots of the present, as one of their classmates is found dead in a stairwell. The girls' families couldn't be more different, with Virginia growing up loved and cared for, while Katie grows up doubting her worth and watching as her mom goes through the impossible and barely comes out alive.

I love the representation of a wide variety of teens in this novel, and felt like I was being shown both what it's like to be white in Alaska, as well as the discrimination Native kids face in school and in their everday lives.  I'm grateful that this novel is an "own voices" novel in a variety of ways - the author is queer, lives in Alaska, and can speak to a variety of the issues she shares in this book.

A definite read for teens who love mystery, it's also a a great book for teens looking for queer represtentaiton outside of coming out stories. Can't wait to add it to my classroom library!
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Can i trust her? follows two girls, Katie and Virginia, as they try and solve the murder of school student/bully Marisol. with some underlying issues between them because of their past.

i liked the murder mystery storyline and the dual pov between Katie and Virginia! i always love a dual pov in books.

TW: there is a lot of racism portrayed in this book against Native Alaskans so if you plan to read please be aware of that. there is also talk of eating disorders, physical abuse and homophobia, i’d love if the author has maybe mentioned all these triggers beforehand. 

there is also some brief cheating that takes place and i’m not a huge fan of that type of storyline. 

i did like the last chapter/epilogue i think it was so sweet and the epilogue sets up the potential for another book, which i would definitely read. 

overall, i enjoyed the book, i just wished some trigger warnings had been marked at the start of the book.
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i’m extremely busy at the moment, so i don’t have much time to read arcs but i will come back and edit this with my actual review once i’ve read it! super excited!
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trigger warnings: homophobia, domestic abuse, violence, injuries, bully, eating disorder, loss, parental negligence 

Can I Trust Her is an okay book and I think I need therapy after this. The events in this book can be (very) disturbing. It’s a well written dark, mystery YA. It has sapphic romance between the two main characters, but that’s not the center of the story and it wished it hasn’t been advertised as a 90% sapphic romance and 10% murder mystery.

This book left a bittersweet after taste for me, and like 20% bitter + 25% sweet + 55% anxiety because of how dark it was. But that’s not an issue since that’s the book’s genre. My issue is that the author seems to use all types of stereotypes of certain things. And often I found myself wondering what era the book is taken place in, only to realize that it’s been contemporary when a BTS shirt was mentioned. Character-wise, they can be shallow because all seem to have one thing that is theirs: the closeted, the out, the drag Queen, the Korean, the ex, etc. and that their whole personality is based on that. Closeted because of her broken family, out and proud because of her loving family, the others are for diversity or something… And Katie is a hypocrite and she was following her mom’s footsteps even though she keeps gaslighting herself that she’s not.  The writing style is alright, there are some unanswered questions, but it’s mostly the content and character portrayals that are questionable.
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Thanks to Netgalley and Bella Books for an e-arc of this book! 


What can I say? When I saw that this book was about a murder mystery happening in a highschool with queer detectives, I just thought it would be a perfect read for pride month. 

This was an easy and fast read which surprised me, because I would have love to learn more about the characters and their backstories. This was one of the issues for me about this book. Virginia and Katie are adorable but while Katie's backstory was fleshed out I wish we learned more about where Virginia came from. It seems to me the author maybe wanted to make it look like the Scooby gang with Matty, Katie, Virginia, Tally and Yoohi but it didn't work from because we know nothing about Yoohi and Tally. There is no chemistry/connection between these characters, they felt more like strangers than friends. 

I also felt like the main girls were not really good detectives, of course they are highshcool students, but let's be honest, Matty did most of the work and had the best ideas. I also noticed some stereotypes applied to Matty and Yoohi but they were still great characters.

The mystery in this book is about a young student named Marisol who's been killed in the film club staircase. There wasn't any plotwist at the end, it's pretty easy to figure out who did it at the half mark of the book. Marisol wasn't liked by anyone but I hoped we could get to see more about her family or about why she was so mean to everyone? Maybe this is gonna get discussed in the sequel. 

Now let's get to the good part of this review and it's basically Katie and Virginia's relationship. Honestly this book could've been only about their couple drama/dynamic and I would have love it anyway. The girls are so adorable, always thinking of each other and obvioulsy not being over each other. They are meant to be together and I sure hope it stays that way in the sequel. I appreciate Katie's paticular journey and her questioning her sexuality because of her (horrible) father. 

I suggest this book to highschoolers who like a good romance and murder-mystery solving.
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Sometimes when I am at work, I have nothing specifically that I need to do at that moment. And I thought to myself, what better thing to do than read arcs on my computer? There is nothing better. 

When the valedictorian falls down the poorly-lit stairs at the back of the school, people think it was just an accident. Except, did people really like there girl who fell, or did she make a lot of enemies at the school? And because of course, two girls in the school have to find more information. Katie and Virginia, childhood-sweethearts before Katie's sudden departure, now find themselves investigating the true goings-on of the golden girl. What will they discover about their classmates, and about themselves?

--- SPOILERS AHEAD ---
 
As far as teen-investigation books go, I thought this book was twisty enough to keep me interested. It was very short, which I found odd, and the drama of Virginia and Katie was a bit oddly approached. 

One thing that I wasn't sure about was Matty as a character. I think his importance to the plot was enough that possibly there could have been more research done on a character like his. It just all felt a lot stereotype-ish and I just think it could have been approached differently.
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I was excited to read this sapphic mystery and for the most part it did not disappoint. The chapters were short and kept me interested in figuring out the next piece of the puzzle. There were some good and interesting twists and reveals. The last 10% of the ending was predictable, but I didn't mind it so much. The one element that was missing for me based on the description was that the two girls did not feel like they lacked trust in each other/neither girl felt suspicious or like she was hiding something form the other girl or reader.
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This story takes place in Alaska where a girl killed on a stairway invites suspicion. Virginia and Katie try to figure out whether it was an accident or on purpose. The plot has two stories. Virginia and Katie were friends before Virginia moved away 3 years prior. Virginia moved back but they are afraid of the feelings they have. They band together to be amateur sleuths and find the cause of their classmate's death.  I found the book very interesting and covers the whole gambit of emotions. I recommend this book for young love and mystery readers.
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