Author: Margaret Willey
Release date: October 1, 2012
Publisher: Carolrhoda books
How I got it: From Netgalley for review
"To you the idea to kidnap Chase Dobson might seem like a mistake. But to us... we were just trying to stop him from being so...evil. We just...we had to stop him. No one helps kids like us. Not at my school. We aren't the important kids. We knew it wouldn't stop unless we stopped it ourselves."
Katie, Nate, and Renata had no farther to fall down the social ladder. But when they hit bottom, they found each other. Together, they wanted to change things. To stop the torment.
So they made a plan. One person seemed to have everyone's secrets—and all the power. If they could stop him...
But secrets are complicated, powerful things. They are hard to keep. And even a noble plan to stop a bully can go horribly wrong.Willey has crafted a novel completely different than any other YA I've read. Instead of relying on characterization, she builds up suspense and mystery throughout the entire novel, and even though you don't know why you care you DO. You care about these characters secrets and their past.
It becomes apparent in only a few pages that Nate, Katie, and Reneta are fiercely loyal to one another. When I shut the book, this was--well, aside from their secrets--the only real things I knew about the characters. Because of this, I know this book won't be gracing my shelves, but it made Willey's story different and maybe a little special.
I honestly could not stop flipping the pages. I kept trying to figure out everyone's story and their secrets until I felt as invested in their case as their social worker did. When the end came, I couldn't help being a little...disappointed. There was so much build-up and intrigue, so when the secrets were revealed they just felt a little anti-climactic to me.
Four Secrets proved to be a fast, interesting, and engrossing read, but for me that's all it was. Still, I'd recommend it to those interested in different ways to tell a story, or anyone who's just looking to kill a few hours lost in a nice story.
Plot: Interesting and unique.
Characters: Eh, I didn't connect with any of them, but I didn't need to. (It's also worth noting that my e-reader wouldn't show any of Reneta's pictures, so I knew pretty much nothing about her.)
Writing: Good. Nate's journal could get really rambly, but I think that was intended.
Ending: Good, but kinda anti-climactic.
Mature content: Mentions of date rape, drugs, drinking, and some swearing, I believe. And of course kidnapping.
I considered asking the dentist to work around my e-reader so I wouldn't have to put this down.