Thirty Seconds at a Time

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Pub Date Oct 08 2024 | Archive Date Mar 31 2024

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Kate’s dad was a cop. And now he’s dead. Killed in a random shooting in the quiet suburb of Maplewood, where random shootings never happen.

Before he died, he gave Kate a piece of paper and left very explicit instructions: Don’t read it. Don’t show anyone. Burn it.

But when Kate discovers a quarter of a million dollars her dad hid inside her guitar case, she discovers his secret. Her dad wasn’t just a cop. He was also a thief.

The last thing Kate ever promised her dad was that she wouldn’t tell. Not her mom. Not the cops. No one. So when her mom takes a job at a ski academy in Vermont, Kate hides the money and tries to forget.

Kate is more than out of her league at this mecca for competitive skiing—she doesn’t even know how to ski. That is until Ryan, the school’s shining star, takes her onto the ski slopes and skis off with her heart.

Just as things are heating up on the slopes, the past hits Kate like an avalanche. Random accidents are becoming commonplace and the people she cares about are being hurt. When a mysterious package arrives with a reminder to stay quiet, Kate and Ryan are forced to search for answers with the only clue Kate has left: everything she promised her dad she would forget.

Kate’s dad was a cop. And now he’s dead. Killed in a random shooting in the quiet suburb of Maplewood, where random shootings never happen.

Before he died, he gave Kate a piece of paper and left...

A Note From the Publisher

The book releases in hardcover, softcover, and ebook. Print distribution through Ingram, Baker & Taylor, and Gardners Books. Library ebook distribution through Overdrive (all sales models), Baker & Taylor, and Hoopla.

The book releases in hardcover, softcover, and ebook. Print distribution through Ingram, Baker & Taylor, and Gardners Books. Library ebook distribution through Overdrive (all sales models), Baker &...

Marketing Plan

  • Indie Next List & Library Reads Nomination
  • National Review Coverage
  • Extensive marketing to Booksellers, Librarians, and Book Influencers
  • Digital ARCs on Edelweiss, NetGalley & ARC Giveaway.
  • Targeted Consumer Email Marketing
  • Extensive Social Media Promotion

Key Selling Points:

Fans of Not If I Save You First by Ally Carter, Ten by Gretchen McNeil, and The Girl I Used to Be by April Henry will love the mystery and suspense of Thirty Seconds at a Time.

Tracy Bilen's debut novel, What She Left Behind (Simon Pulse/Simon & Schuster) received praise from Publishers Weekly and VOYA and her second novel, Whisper (Mirette), was named a Notable 100 Book in the 2021 Shelf Unbound Best Indie Book Competition.

Fans of all ages who like exciting mystery thrillers will be fans of Thirty Seconds at a Time.

  • Indie Next List & Library Reads Nomination
  • National Review Coverage
  • Extensive marketing to Booksellers, Librarians, and Book Influencers
  • Digital ARCs on Edelweiss, NetGalley & ARC Giveaway.
  • ...

Available Editions

EDITION Hardcover
ISBN 9781643974033
PRICE $23.99 (USD)

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (EPUB)
Send to Kindle (EPUB)
Download (EPUB)

Average rating from 25 members

Featured Reviews

Holy Shit! Wow that was a great novel!

I read the entire thing in one sitting, took me 3 hours or so. But boy, was it good.

The fast paced story captivates you from the very beginning and keeps you hooked until the very end.

It's a great short ya mystery-thriller that has a perfect combination of romance, mystery and movie-esque action.

I would definitely recommend it for my book club. It's a book that everyone can enjoy. The settings are perfect, the descriptions are succinct and just right. I didn't notice any grammar mistakes or editing mistakes so thats a huge plus point.

I love love love Ryan. I mean, he's so cute. The pawn shop moment was just aww. I loved the friendship between Maggie and Kate. And even Lauren too. Sophia, despite all her..flaws..was quite endearing. It's a nice break from all the usual bitchy teenager drama. Everyone was so sweet.

I liked all the skiing references. I come from a sunny place and have seen snow maybe thrice in my life. So it was fun to read about skiing and snowboarding and look up all the terms. Very interesting read.

My suggestions for improvements:

- Expanding the book. I didn't want to finish it because it would be over so soon! The novel is so short when it deserved atleast another 50-100 pages.
Everything is there. It's perfect. It just needs to be expanded a bit more. Add more descriptions, more emotions, more relevant details, more scene descriptions especially the action part. The last 30% could've been stretched a bit more and it would've been *chef's kiss*.

- A slower romance. Maybe this is just my personal opinion but I felt that the relationship between Kate and Ryan developed way too fast. It was insta-romance which I sort of tend to avoid. Even the Lauren-Kate friendship was too fast. A few more scenes of them interacting before becoming lovers/besties would make it more perfect.

Things that amused/irked me a tiny bit:

- You sort of realise who the bad guy is from the beginning. But the twist at the end (80%-90%) more than made up for it!.

- Why is this girl shopping soooo muchhh? 2 pairs of expensive shoes, a necklace, a scarf, clothes, etc all within a week??. Where is she getting all this money from?? Ryan? Ok his dad was famous so he might have money especially since he goes to a private academy too. But Kate? Come on. Don't become a shopaholic.

- How are all the characters including Kate so talented? Guitar? Math Whizzes? Calculus? Skating? Skiing? Swimming? Snowboarding? Karaoke Singing? She's (and the other teens) great at all of them? They're all a bunch of child prodigies!

- How do they have access to the fake ids and stuff? It makes it a bit unrealistic and very-movie-like. But not a huge story ruining moment at all.

Overall, definitely definitely read this book! I loved it so much!

Would love to post to goodreads but can't find the book under the author's profile/on the site anywhere.

Thanks for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

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To begin with, I loved the pace of this YA “mystery/thriller with a side order of romance” novel but towards the end I did feel that the storyline is rushed and it is so good it deserves more detail and a few more chapters. There are enough unexpected twists and turns to keep the reader engaged and eager to read on. I think that the pace and easy-reading will appeal to a YA target readership.

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First of all, I want to thank the author to accept my request. This was my first arc and it was SO GOOD, naturally it will have a special place in my bookish heart.
I dont read that much mystery books but I'm thinking to change that after this.
I would DEFINITELY recommend it book to someone (even if they dont read mystery) and I was searching for this book on goodreads but I couldn't find it so ig i'll write a review there whenever it gets on the platform!!

The writing --> I read it within 24 hours as it was fast paced and just so captivating right from page one. Just after reading a single page it wants you to know more, to read more. Even the writing style made it easier to read quick, it's so simple yet so thrilling. It's a short novel and perfect for cozy read or a road trip I would say.

The plot --> Oh I love the story so much. The book is mainly based on plot and not on the other irrelevant details. But the skiing references add a touch to it. Out of everyone I would have NEVER guessed it was THIS person who was hiding in that address, so that part just made my jaw drop. Kate, after her father's death shifts to other city 11hrs away and try a fresh start, but also trying to find answers, just after some 'event' she realizes it has gone too far and it is indeed related to her father.

[Ryan is such a book bf like he gave up everything (literally) for her. he has potential to top my list ngl]

Things that can be improved (from my POV)
- Her changing her school and going to a whole city was kinda rushed and we could have seen some interactions with her friends (not too much that would make it kinda boring but just one/two chapters)
- When they got to Maggie's idk but it would have added more if she sneaked to check the footages rather than just being the (idr but some camera duty officer)
- Ok so see the murder occurred at the hospital's parking lot but I'm guessing there should have been a CCTV and It would be great to see the murderer to alter the footages to frame the victim more

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While I am an older adult, I did enjoy this YA-themed mystery along with its characters, the fast-moving plot line, and the settings. The teen heroine has a very hectic life filled with more than the usual drama, including a book-opening scene where her dad is murdered literally in front of her. Solving that mystery, moving to a new school where her mom gets a teaching job, and finding new love all add to even more drama. The level of violence is appropriate for YA audiences and there were just a few hard-to-believe scenes that didn't really detract from the plot flow.

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This book sucked me in with the very first chapter! I couldn't put it down. The story line was very easy to follow and I loved the romance story mixed in with the thriller. I kept thinking one way and then it would go another way. It kept me engaged the whole time.

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This book immediately grabs your attention at the beginning, when Kate sees her father being killed in their home. Before his death, he tells her a secret that leaves you wondering what he means. This story keeps building the secret with clues, as Kate and her mother try to rebuild their lives in a new place. Kate keeps getting threats to keep quiet on what she knows. This story will keep you intrigued the entire time.

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I read this book in just a few hours and I enjoyed it for the most part.

I was entertained almost the entire time and once I was involved with the story, I found it easy to read.
The romance bit was fun and unexpected and I liked how Ryan wasn't a total hero. Sure he helped her get off the ski lift but then he gets kidnapped in Canada. Like he is just a kid wouldn't be some superman at that point.

The chapters in the beginning were a bit harder to get through and I had a hard time getting engaged but once I was there weren't other dips.
I felt like the whole story was there, including necessary details, but sometimes they felt more like an after thought that had to be thrown in to keep the story moving forward, like Kate knew how to use a gun, which only comes up when she's asking for a gun. Her dad was a cop, so it does totally makes sense that he taught her, but that could've been a story she had a flashback of, or something like that and not just thrown in randomly.

I have not recorded my reviews for online yet but I will and they will be available in about a week :)

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Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for this eARC.

A multilayered mystery with tons of intrigue and a delightful young romance (which even I enjoyed, and I am not a romance fan.

The suspense throughout this story is taught as a violin string throughout the entire story, and yet, despite numerous murders, betrayals and close calls, it is a bit of a romp with an undercurrent of positivity and youth that makes it all bearable.

A wonderful book, and although the focus audience is young adults, this older adult couldn't put this book down.

An utterly fascinating thriller, by a uniquely talented author.

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This is a YA novel that was a quick read and finished in one day. This story follows a young Kate, who watches her detective father die from a drive by shooting. In his last breath, he left her with a breadcrumb of information, but without context. In the days following the funeral, Kate finds more a substantial amount of money hiding in a crawl space while packing to move to Vermont. Following her dying fathers wish, she keeps the secrets- that is until the secrets start to leave a trail of death leading right back to her. Meanwhile, Kate is falling in love with Ryan, while attending a prestigious private ski academy in Vermont. Everything is going according to plan, until more people close to Kate end up dead. Kate and Ryan set out on a road trip to put an end to the threats and save her mom’s life.

This crazy story is unrealistic, but perfect for a YA thriller. Romance, suspense, independence, and thriller all in one book. There’s the excitement of new love, but without crossing boundaries; escapades of young love, dealing with grief and death, and a clear heroine.

Thank you to NetGalley and BHC Press for the eARC. The review and opinions are mine and are unbiased.

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I got through this book very quickly. I was invested in the story from the very first couple of pages as it starts off with a POW! There are a number of twists which kept me guessing. I do think that the romance development was pretty fast given the timeline. This is a YA thriller so I needed to remind myself of that a couple of times when I thought that it was unrealistic that teens would be solving the case. Overall it was a fun read.

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Wow! This book had me sucked in from the first chapter. I thought I would read a few chapters before bed… well that wasn’t smart because I ended tossing and turning thinking about the book until I finally got up and continued reading.

I couldn’t put it down until it was finished. The story was emotional and captivating. I felt like I was on a roller coaster, a nice moment followed by an oh no what’s next?! I loved it!

Also love me a nice big twist near the end to really give you that well rounded feel. I’m so excited to have this book as my first ARC and can’t wait to read more of Tracy Bilen.
I highly recommend it. Definite five stars from me.

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This book was amazing! It started going right away and went full speed until the end! It was super intense and I could not put it down! I also really liked seeing how the main character's relationship with her friends and Ryan grew!

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