Margot Hunt is becoming one of my favorite contemporary thriller writers, so I was excited to have this chance to read Lovely Girls. A solid, thoughtful thriller about whether people are "born bad" or raised that way, and how far high school bullies will go for revenge.
This book has all the trigger warnings: bullying, adult sexual relationships with minors, and of course, murder and mayhem, but all these topics are handled with sensitivity and thoughtfulness. This book really brought me back to some of the awful feelings of high school and how mean girls can truly be; now even more so with social media.
Our protagonist Alex and her mother Kate are likable characters, which is a good thing, because not too many other people in their town are. This well-narrated audiobook kept me guessing and the hours flew by. I will continue to check out this talented author's entire backlist. Recommended!
4 Stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Lovely Girls? No.
Mean Girls? Yes.
I’ve been hesitant to pick this one up for several months, mainly because of the “mean girl” trope. I feel like it’s really overdone and the books that I have read with that plot line haven’t really been that great. However, this one was pretty darn good! I listened to the audio version (something I’m new at) and really liked the narrators too.
Kate and her daughter Alex moved to Shoreham, FL from Buffalo, NY to get a fresh start after her husband’s death. Although Kate quickly makes friends with a trio of moms, their daughters despise Alex immediately. Soon, Kate and Alex get caught up in a web of deceit, small-town gossip, lies and murder.
This is a super entertaining thriller that had quite a few unlikable characters. Not only are the three mean girls positively vile, but their mothers are just as despicable. Like mother, like daughter. My anxiety was kicked into high gear while reading this. Bullying is no joke in today’s world. I’m glad my school days are decades behind me!
Somewhat predictable, all the way entertaining. Highly recommend!
Thank you to NetGalley, Thomas & Mercer and Margot Hunt for my advanced copy to read and review.
I was left wanting more. It was slow in some parts. Good thing there was an audiobook.
Thank you to NetGalley for providing an e-arc of the book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are mine.
Sadly this book just wasn't for me. I wish I had more to say but I don't. I just couldn't get into the story and I dnf'd this book halfway through.
Alex and her mother recently moved from NY to FL after Alex's father dies and they're hoping for a fresh start.
While starting over, Alex meets three new girls at her high school and seems to hit it off with him, but it is not what it seems. It gave off Mean Girl vibes if Mean Girls were more of a mystery/darker.
This novel started out kinda slow, I considered not finishing it but I ended up getting sucked in and I'm glad I stuck it out.
It was interesting reading about Alex's diary videos without getting her full point of view.. at the beginning of the story i.thought it was really weird she started recording the girls playing tennis and though I thought their reaction was extreme, I somewhat understood why they were upset. Further into the story I realized even without that event there probably would have been animosity between them just due to who Daphne and her friends were and their past behavior.
I enjoyed how the author portrayed how people could be not all good or not all bad. One example is the neighbor, Lita. She did have good intentions warning Kate about Genevieve but her reactions to Taylor's story and the police investigation after Callie's death were honestly a bit disturbing, but also very realistic. I also enjoyed how Alex grappled with her own guilt after her father's death and felt she wasn't that much different than Daphne, although I agree with the therapist. I knew pretty early on that Alex probably wasn't the one found dead, but the events leading up to the death were unexpected and interesting, keeping me hooked.
After the sudden death of her husband, Kate decides it is time for a fresh start. Kate and her teenage daughter, Alex, move to a beachside town in Florida. Kate settles into her new life much easier than Alex. She befriends a trio of mothers. However, the daughters of these women do not like Alex at all. Not only do they dislike Alex, but they bully her. Alex tries to document the bullying through video diaries. One day, Alex captures something that will change the course of the teenagers and their mothers lives.
This was my first Margot Hunt book. I really enjoyed her style of writing. I will definitely be reading more from her in the future. She does an excellent job at diving into the characters while interspersing suspense. "Mean girls" are so common in society these days, especially in an era of social media. Margot Hunt does an excellent job showcasing the realities of how mean teenage girls can be and the consequences that follow. Although this plot has harsher consequences than what we see day to day, most of what was featured in the novel (ie the bullying) is spot on with reality. The author also explores the nature vs nurture debate, and does an excellent job diving in.
This is a very quick and easy read! I finished it in a day, finding it very difficult to put down! Highly recommend.
Thanks you Thomas & Mercer and NetGalley for the copy in exchange for an honest review.
I absolutely love Margo Hunt. When I first read one of her books, I binged read her entire back list within a week. These books are easy to read and they hook you! This one is no different. I absolutely loved this one as well and can't wait to read more of her books!
The chapters alternate between Kate's perspective and Alex's video diary. This narration adds suspense to the storyline as Alex recounts the bullying she is enduring. Kate's chapters are a little heartbreaking as she continues trying to reach Alex. She overlooks unpleasant traits in her new friends but will she finally listen to other people's warnings about them?
I love thrillers about bitchy, snobby moms acting up so this was right up my alley! Nice, twisted characters. A solid thriller in the private school, badly behaving moms trope
Fantastic book loved the friendship dynamics - loved the way the control was described - loved the way it was written - loved the way the book flowed
I struggled to really get into the story at first, but it was still enjoyable. It was creepy and pretty fast-paced, which is always a plus with any mystery/thriller.
This eARC was provided by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for my honest opinion.
3 stars- this is a quick read filled with suspense. thanks netgalley & the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.
A quick and easy read that is full of suspense and twists and turns. If you're looking for a good psychological thriller set in a small town, this one is for you!
Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for this ARC in exchange for an honest review.
A suspenseful and creepy story, and scarily realistic.
Many thanks to Thomas & Mercer and to Netgalley for providing me with a galley in exchange for my honest opinion.
Completely riveting and disturbing, once I finally picked this up I couldn't put it down! The multiple POVs were equally intriguing and kept the pages turning. These girls are really messed up and I loved to hate them while reading this novel. Highly recommend to the thriller lovers!
Interesting and well written I just personally couldn’t get into the story. Difficult to follow at times and a little slow. I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.
After the sudden death of her husband, Kate and her 17 year old daughter Alex move to Florida. Here they meet Emma, Ingrid, Genevieve and their daughters Shae, Callie and Daphne. While the mothers seem nice to Kate at first, she and Alex soon find out how mean some people can be, with deadly consequences…
Lovely Girls is marketed as a mystery, but if you go into it expecting to play detective the whole book, you should manage your expectations.
This book is more of a character study of mean girls and their mothers, with the mystery aspect of the story only starting at around 70-75%
THE ENDING THOUGH, oof it’s good, greatly improved the rating. But seriously, if you like character driven plots with a Mean Girls or Heathers-esque friend group that focusses on the question of if evil is born or made, you should for sure pick this one up.
A twisty insane thriller that had me on the edge of my seat. I could not put it down. Thank you to the publisher.
This is a quick, easy to read story with lots of Mean Girl vibes. Set in a small town it is full of drama. While I enjoyed this book, there wasn't any big twist or turns along the way that I typically enjoy. I've read other books by this author that knocked my socks off, this one just wasn't my favorite of her work.
If you're looking for an easy to read book, that would be great to read when at the beach or sitting at the pool, this is for you.
Thank you to Netgalley and Thomas & Mercer for this gifted copy.