Premeditated, by Josin McQuein

Josin L. McQuein's Premeditated is the kind of novel that helps teenage mystery fans grow up into adult ones. In addition to featuring a lot of very teen-friendly romantic and familial drama, McQuein sprinkles her text with a series of tantalizing clues that are just tricky enough to make a young reader feel like Sherlock Holmes.

When Dinah's 14-year-old cousin Claire ends up in a coma after a suicide attempt, Dinah is determined to find out why... and when she discovers that Claire was used and abandoned by Brooks Walden, the most popular boy at her exclusive prep school, she is equally determined to get revenge. With the help of her two creative—and utterly ruthless—best friends, Dinah enrolls at Brooks's school, wriggles into his social circle, and embarks on a campaign to ruin his life, ranging from getting him arrested to breaking his heart.

Premeditated is a remarkably strong debut. Dinah and her friends have distinct and appealing voices, the stakes are high, and, while most of the characters are a shade too glamorous to be plausible, that actually added to my enjoyment of the story. (I'm not looking to be legitimately depressed by a novel about teen suicide. A prep school version of Revenge, on the other hand, sounds great.) I'm assuming Premeditated is a standalone, as the central mystery is conclusively resolved, but Dinah and her friends are interesting enough—and, thanks to their twisted family lives and complicated romantic relationships, have more than enough ongoing problems—to justify another book. And if McQuein writes one, she can totally count on my $17.99.

Review based on publisher-provided copy.
Posted by: Julianka


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