Cover Image: Twenty-Seven Minutes

Twenty-Seven Minutes

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Member Reviews

I was so excited for this book, but unfortunately it just didn't live up to the hype. I didn't connect with any of the characters, and I found the story to be drawn out and tedious. Finding out what actually happened in the twenty-seven minutes was the only thing that kept me reading and I ended up being disappointed in that reveal. I always love reading Canadian authors, but I don't think I'll be picking up a book from Ashley Tate again.

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I was very disappointed in this one and I was so looking forwards to reading it. I just found that for over 300 pages long, nothing much happens. All the characters were unlikable and the "twist" was predictable and disappointing.

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The way this book was written was beautiful.
I enjoyed the woven storylines, the characterization and the need to keep turning the pages so that I could learn more.
The twists - more than one - is what sets this book apart from so many others in the genre.
My heart was torn for so many of the characters.
This is a story that won't leave you.

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DNF at 46%!

I didn’t love this one as much as I was hoping to! The concept was intriguing but ultimately the plot moved too slowly and I found the POV’s to lack organization and depth. I wanted to know how everything would wrap up but after nearly two weeks of trying to get through it… I decided to stop reading.

I would never recommend that an author write a book without chapters… it makes the whole thing feel unnecessarily long especially for a story that moved so slowly.

I prefer my thrillers to be more fast paced with unpredictable plot twists, however you might enjoy this one if you are a fan of psychological and slower placed thrillers!

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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for a chance to read and review this book. This author's debut novel tells the story of Phoebe, a teenage girl in a small town who was killed in a car accident 10 years prior. The story also focuses on the lasting affect the death had on her brother and their friends. The story tells us that there's always been speculation about what actually caused the crash and why it took her brother (the driver of the car), 27 minutes to call for help. The upcoming tenth anniversary of the death and accident rekindles the speculation and mystery surrounding that night.
The story itself unfolds from multiple viewpoints and alternates between then and now. The novel starts of with a powerful opening to set the scene and mood, but then things start to slow down and at times even stall a bit . It is a dark read with the sometimes unlikeable characters dealing with their grief and trauma, secrets, manipulation and lies. A large part of the story focuses on the impact of Phoebe’s death on the characters and on their unraveling due to their subsequent loss/grief. The final unveiling of what really happened that fateful night occurs near the end of the book and there is a good, unexpected twist; however, there was too much of a slow build throughout the book for me. Fans of a more character-driven, slow-burn story would likely enjoy this book.

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What a group of complex (and ultimately flawed and unlikeable) characters dealing with grief. This story often made me uncomfortable and i was completely unexpecting the ending! I had to keep reading to see what happened during those 27 minutes !

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2 stars.

A death in a small town haunts the community a decade later.

I should have DNF’d this but I kept hoping it would come together. My 2 star rating is me being generous as this was more of a 1.5 star reading experience.

There were many issues for me throughout this book, the timeline being my biggest problem. This storyline happens a decade after a tragic death in the community. The conversations and (cheesy) dialogue between the characters happening ten years after the incident didn’t ring true at all. The sudden memories and lingering secretive relationships were eye-rolling. The characters behaviours, decisions and relationships didn’t seem realistic to be happening ten years after the incident. The overall storyline was questionable and filled with plot holes.

I didn’t care for any of the characters. None of them were likeable or root worthy. They seemed very surface level and primary. I was confused between characters multiple times as several of them were similar and not memorable enough to stand out. The overall tone had a soap opera feel. My disconnect from the storyline meant that I was too distanced from the plot to feel any sort of atmosphere.

Overall, this was a huge disappointment. When I posted my initial thoughts and rating on IG, I was overwhelmed with the amount of messages I received agreeing with my rating. I would like to say I’m an outlier with my thoughts, but I don’t think I am…consider this your warning…

Audio rating: 3 stars. The narrators did a good job presenting the story but nothing that stood out or enhanced my reading experience.

Thank you to the publisher for my review copy! Thank you to my lovely local library for the audio loan!

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Why did it take Grant Dean 27 minutes to call for help?

That’s what the entire town of West Wilmer wants to know about the after-math of the fatal crash that took the life of Phoebe Dean, Grant’s sister. Was he drunk? What is he hiding?

In this slow burn suspense mystery, now ten years later on the anniversary of her death, there’s a memorial dedicated to Phoebe. Grant has to face his demons.

I wanted to love this book based on the description but unfortunately I didn’t. The characters felt flat and the slow-burn writing did not grip me.

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Based on its description I thought I would love this book, but unfortunately I found myself struggling to finish it. The chapters are short, but I found that several chapters spent time repeating plot points from another perspective. While I think that may be helpful to the reader, it can also make the reader want to skip pages or put the book down. When I hit the 50% mark, I found myself finally drawn into the story and the second half read must faster for me. The twist at the end was satisfying; however, I don't feel like the author tied up some loose ends.

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The story of a tragic accident ten years in the past had the potential for a lot of tension, suspense and revelation. Instead, I found myself bogged down by the slow pace, the alternating POVs and the ending that didn't surprise.

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After leaving a party, a small-town golden girl is killed in a car crash. The details of which are not clear. Her brother, the driver, waited 27 minutes before calling 911. It is later confirmed that the time delay led to her death. Rumours swirl that he was drunk and waiting to sober up. No charges were laid (are you serious?). A decade later, the town is still in a vice grip of loss(es) and what took place that night.

I should not have finished this book. With rotating timelines and perspectives, there was a lot going on. It was disjointed, drawn-out, and the twist wasn’t worth the pages read. I can’t recommend it.

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Personally, every character exhibited unlikable traits, they each had their own distinct personalities, making it easy to distinguish between points of view. I couldn't find a single character that I genuinely liked. Even the deceased failed to elicit sympathy as her unsettling nature was gradually revealed. The chapters set a decade ago were narrated by different individuals who were present at the party, offering unique perspectives that I found intriguing. Despite the chapters set ten years later covering only three days, they seemed to drag on much longer.
Overall, this debut novel was ok, but it felt more suited to a young adult audience, especially since the characters showed minimal growth over the ten-year period. The suspense was effectively built up, albeit at a slow pace, taking considerable time to reach the core of the story. The unexpected twist was a pleasant surprise. I believe the author has potential, and I look forward to reading her next book.

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I loved this book. It was filled with suspense and surprise throughout, and demonstrates clearly to the reader just how negatively an ugly hidden incident can impact people's lives for many many years. A community living with guilt and suspicion, and many of whom are simply unable or unwilling to move past the lies and secrets and get on with their lives. I was astounded as to the many characters in this book whose lives intertwined negatively as a result of a party one evening. While I realize this is fiction, the book demonstrates what can and has happened to several people that I know. We cannot get on with our lives until we sort out the past, despite what it reveals about ourselves and our loved ones. An excellent psychological book that moved along very quickly, and certainly kept me on edge.

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I was really excited for this based off of the potential of the plot but was disappointed when there was no character connection built between the reader and the characters. I didn't feel for any of the characters or care about their stories. The ending was good but I just wish there was a deeper connection built and more character development.

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A slow-burn character-driven who-done-it that peels back an intrigue like layers of an onion. I loved the interaction of these bruised and damaged characters ten year after the worst day of all their lives. The novel begins slowly, but grabs onto you. The finish surprises, but is perfect in every way. This will appeal to readers who appreciate non-tropey thrillers.

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I had a hard time with this one. I didn't find it an easy read. Most of the characters were unlikable, the story dragged out longer than necessary. I was not expecting the twist at the end, that was a surprise. I would definitely give the author another chance, but this one wasn't for me.

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As an avid thriller consumer, I found this one hit in the middle of the rating.
I found the story was slow and at times struggled to keep my attention. The plot took awhile to get going and was windy, making it difficult to follow at times for me. The story got a bit more interesting and quick about mid-way through but I feel it was still too long. Overall, the premise and plot were enjoyable but I was able to predict the ending fairly early.

Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for the eARC copy of this book.


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If you like small town, slow burn mysteries, then this one’s for you!
I really, really wanted to like this one, but it was honestly a chore to get through. Very close to becoming a DNF. The plot had potential to be a great mystery culminating to an unexpected twist, but the journey to get there was arduous, repetitive, and fraught with unlikeable, self-absorbed characters.
Decent debut, but a little too “YA melodrama” for my liking.

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Sadly although the synopsis and early reviews of this book were enough to catch my attention, this book struggled to keep my attention and was too grief-filled for me to fully immerse myself in. I would try another book from Ashley agate in the future, but this wasn’t for me.
Thank you NetGalley and Penguin Random House Canada for this ARC!

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Another Canadian author debut! I love how Canadian female authors are killing it right now!

Twenty Seven Minutes is a strong debut. Tate excels at creating and developing unreliable narrators. I enjoyed seeing the same moments and memories through different characters POVs a la The Affair. This is not easy to do and at times the repetition felt like it added unnecessary length to the book and brought the momentum down. But when it worked, it tied everything together.

For me, the book is an exploration of tragedy and grief and how it consumes people. It was a completely different book than I was expecting based on the "thriller" marketing.

While reading, I would never have guessed that the story would stay with me the way it has over the past weeks. The town may have memorialized and idolized Pheobe, but it is Rebecca and June who have captured my attention. They are both frustrating and heartbreaking characters. They show how grief and tragedy can become your identity and how you feed off it.

Twenty Seven Minutes will appeal to readers who enjoy a slow burn, melancholy story with layered characters. Go into it without preconceived genre expectations for the best reading experience.

I look forward to reading Ashley Tate's next book!

Thank you to the publisher & NetGalley for the eARC to read and review.


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