The boy who shot seven people in the school library is dead. But did his secrets die with him?
Something terrible happened at Hamilton High last year, and those who survived don’t want to relive the past. But Paul has just arrived, and gets the same locker that the shooter used. He wants to know what really happened…and you know what curiosity did to the cat.
I was provided with an e-ARC of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to Booktrope for letting me read this!
I picked this book up mostly because of the cover, but when I read the synopsis, I knew I was going to like this book. And I really did. Come Sit By Me comes out tomorrow (July 15th), so I’m writing this review kind of last minute, but whatever. I highly enjoyed this book, though I don’t think it’s for everyone.
The premise sounded really interesting to me and I really liked the mystery at the beginning. Thomas Hoobler introduced us with the setting and the characters on an interesting way, and the beginning of the book was neither too fast or too slow. I liked how Paul quickly met all the important characters and he was soon just another student, not a newbie (which was very weird for me, since I am not very social, but that’s my problem). But the more he fit in the school and the more stuff he discovered, I realized I knew how this book is going to end. Whenever I read a mystery book, I try to guess ‘the bad guy’ and I usually epicly fail so at the end the twist blows my mind. With this book, I guessed correctly and I was even right about what exactly happened, which odd out from my enjoyment a bit. It’s not that the twist is not good, I actually really like it, but the clues we got through the book were just way too obvious. But other than that, I really liked the plot, it was exciting and intense and I just flew through this book in two sittings. Another thing I really appreciate about this book is that there is no romance. Yes, a YA book without romance. Surprised, ha? Okay, there are some boy/girl scenes and our main character does talk about girls, but there is no real romance. Paul does hook up with girls, but does he fall deeply in love with that one perfect girl and then the entire book is about him swooning over her? Nope. Not in this book. And I find THAT realistic.
I really liked Paul as a protagonist. His obsession with wanting to find out what happened was very interesting and I was excited just as much as he was whenever he found another clue. I found him to be a very realistic character, and not this idealized main character who does everything right. He was portrayed as a curious teenage boy who wanted to be accepted. He got in trouble, he made stupid decisions, he was very interested in girl’s boobs and he kept secrets, but you can’t really blame him for any of that. Which teenager isn’t like Paul?
I really like Terry. She was a bit stereotypical and she reminded me a lot of Annabeth or Hermione (you know, Percy Jackson, Harry Potter). But I liked her relationship with Paul and how it all played out between them at the end (I already said there is no romance, so don’t expect it).
When it comes to Cale, I have no idea what to think about him. I really appreciate him as a character and it was definitely interesting to unravel that mystery surrounding him. He was weird, but he was also very naive and dumb. No wonder it was so easy to manipulate with him.
Overall, characters in this book were all very different and unique and I enjoyed reading about all of them. They all added a lot to the whole story, but Cale’s backstory was just wow. I even feel a bit sorry for him. Though he is very weird and very creepy.
Through the first part of the book, I though the writing was okay. It was good, pace was fitting to the storyline, protagonist was funny and I really liked his voice, but I wasn’t really impressed. You know, just a regular, high-quality writing style. But then, the second part of the book came, Caleb’s Book, and I was completely blown away. All that misspelling and confused writing, but also some beautiful quotes at the same time, made me really appreciate Thomas Hoobler. Yeah, it was painful to read all these words misspelled and I felt like I won’t be able to spell properly after reading this book, but I also really enjoyed decipering all the words. Also I have to mention this beautiful, but morbid, quote: They can’t hurt you when you’re dead. I know I’m a weird person, but I find this quote to be very cool and very empowering.
If you’re okay with reading a book about a weird, crazy character, I definitely recommend this book to you. I highly enjoy it and I am very happy that I got to review this book. It was an insane ride and I would be really happy if this book becomes popular in the book community (though I don’t think it will, unfortunately). But YOU can read it and spread the word. It definitely deserves a lot of love.