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Monday, September 11, 2017

Don't Look Back | Book Review

Don’t Look Back

Written by: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Number of pages: 369

Average Rating: 4.11/5 stars
My Rating: 5 stars

Published: April 14, 2014
Read in September 2017

Summary According to Goodreads

Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all - popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend.

Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it’s one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took “mean girl” to a whole new level, and it’s clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Same is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She’s getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she’s falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her - even if the old Sam treated him like trash.

But Cassie is still missing, and the truth about what happened to her that night isn’t just buried deep inside of Sam’s memory - someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of the fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive?

My Thoughts

I have been eyeing this novel for a while, and have actually owned it since September of 2014. I figured three years was enough time for it to sit on my shelf, and decided to give it a read. And OH BOY what a read it was. 

This was not my first experience with Jennifer L. Armentrout, I read her new adult novel Wait for You, a couple years ago but I didn’t love it. Reading this makes me want to give that one another read, because her writing was so smooth and so easy to read. There was the perfect amount of suspense, the right amount of romance, and even some humour thrown in. 

I love thrillers, and this one did not disappoint. It was engaging from the very first page, and only increased its intensity from there. There were some plot points that were predictable, but I did not guess the ending at all. This novel was written so well, that readers can be so torn between who the suspect was and be kept on their toes until the very end. 

The characters were fairly well-developed considering they were high school students, but my two favourites were Scott (her brother), and Carson (our love interest). It was clear that our main character had strong support systems around her, but everyone had motive to hurt her or Cassie so she couldn’t put her complete trust in anyone. Samantha did make some naive decisions, but given her circumstances I think they were done with the best of intentions. 

This was a difficult novel for me to rate. I originally rated it four stars, but ended up bringing it up to a five. There were a couple of character faults I didn’t like, but they all ended up being justified through the plot. There was nothing I would have changed, nothing I would have liked to see - it was great. 

Overall, this novel has made it onto my favourites list, and I am already looking for another by this author to add to my shelf. This was a great one to kick off the fall weather, and I would recommend it with Halloween coming up!

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