Social Suicide

( 15 )

Overview

Twittercide: the killing of one human being by another while the victim is in the act of tweeting.

Call me crazy, but I figured writing for the Herbert Hoover High Homepage would be a pretty sweet gig. Pad the resume for college applications, get a first look at the gossip column, spend some time ogling the paper's brooding bad-boy editor, Chase Erikson. But on my first big story, things went . . . a little south. What should have been a normal interview with Sydney Sanders ...

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Social Suicide

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Overview

Twittercide: the killing of one human being by another while the victim is in the act of tweeting.

Call me crazy, but I figured writing for the Herbert Hoover High Homepage would be a pretty sweet gig. Pad the resume for college applications, get a first look at the gossip column, spend some time ogling the paper's brooding bad-boy editor, Chase Erikson. But on my first big story, things went . . . a little south. What should have been a normal interview with Sydney Sanders turned into me discovering the homecoming queen–hopeful dead in her pool. Electrocuted while Tweeting. Now, in addition to developing a reputation as HHH's resident body finder, I'm stuck trying to prove that Sydney's death wasn't suicide.

I'm starting to long for the days when my biggest worry was whether the cafeteria was serving pizza sticks or Tuesday Tacos. . . .

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Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Donna L. Phillips
Detective-turned-reporter Hartley Featherstone (Deadly Cool [HarperTeen, 2011/Voya October 2011]) is back, and once again bumping into the bodies of classmates from Herbert Hoover High. This time, it is Sydney Sanders, top contender for Homecoming Queen until she is suspended for cheating on a math test. When Sydney is found in the family pool along with her plugged-in laptop, everyone else surmises suicide. With the help of best friend, Sam(antha), and love-interest-turned-editor-boss, Chase, Hartley sets out to unravel a more sinister solution—murder. Can she avoid her old antagonist, Detective Raley, solve the crimes, write the story for her school's online paper, and win the heart of bad boy editor, Chase Erikson? Not before plenty of page-turning hijinks and revised profanity. Halliday reprises the well-paced whodunit and teen romance, balanced with her cheeky humor, especially with the relationship between teen daughter Hartley and her vegan, single SMother, who still serves up heaping helpings of tofu comfort food. In a delightful subplot, Mom mortifies her daughter by deciding to go online in quest of a relationship of her own. There are no empty condom wrappers in this sequel, and the "effing" of the first book has been replaced with "fluffin' fudge," making it more suitable for a slightly younger audience. Readers who start with the sequel are likely to want the first, however, so librarians who do not have it should be prepared to consider both. Reviewer: Donna L. Phillips
Kirkus Reviews
In a follow-up to Deadly Cool (2011), Hartley Featherstone returns to romp through another murder mystery. Hartley has joined the Herbert Hoover High online-newspaper staff, working for her intriguing, black-clad friend, Chase, the editor. She's set to interview Sydney, caught cheating on strict Mr. Tipkins' math test. Hartley arrives for the interview only to find Sydney face down in her pool, electrocuted by her laptop, an apparent victim of "Twittercide." Hartley again meets the annoying Detective Raley, who can't really do his job because Hartley won't tell him what she knows. Raley thinks Sydney committed suicide, but Hartley convinces herself that it had to be murder and sets out to catch the culprit. Again, she puts herself in danger, sneaking off at night to dark parks and breaking into her school, trying to investigate how the test answers might have been stolen. She winds up at the homecoming dance with Chase, a welcome development, but her investigation may have worried the murderer, who now targets Hartley. Will she survive? And what's Detective Raley doing with Hartley's mom? Halliday again balances the comedy and suspense notes well, keeping her characters intriguing and her narrative bright. Hartley has enough smarts combined with obvious foibles to make her a likable heroine. Meanwhile, the mystery bubbles along. Suspenseful fun. (Mystery. 12 & up)
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up—After surviving the events in Deadly Cool (HarperCollins, 2011), Hartley is working as a reporter for the school's newspaper. Her first big assignment is to write about Sydney Sanders, a Homecoming Queen contestant who was caught cheating in precalculus class. Hartley knows that she needs to get to the heart of the story, so she tries convincing Sydney to tell how she got the answers to the test. However, when Hartley goes to meet the ditzy girl, she discovers Sydney's body floating in her pool along with her laptop. The police are positive that her death is a suicide (or, since she was on Twitter right before she died, "Twittercide"), but Hartley is convinced that Sydney wouldn't have agreed to talk to her before killing herself. Now it's up to the protagonist, her friend Sam, and love-interest Chase to solve the murder before Hartley becomes the next target. Plenty of clues are left to keep readers guessing as the teens work together to uncover motives and opportunities for each of their suspects.—Natalie Struecker, Rock Island Public Library, IL
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062003324
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 4/24/2012
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 554,502
  • Age range: 13 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

When Gemma Halliday was sixteen she wanted to be either a rock star or Marilyn Monroe. Instead, she ended up working as a film extra, a teddy bear importer, a department store administrator, a preschool teacher, a temporary-tattoo artist, and a 900-number psychic before settling on the career of author. Since then, her books have been published in several countries, optioned for television, and have won lots of cool, shiny trophies, including a National Readers' Choice Award and three RITA nominations. Gemma now lives in the San Francisco Bay area, where she loves watching reality TV shows, eating takeout pizza, and shoe shopping. She is also the author of Deadly Cool.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 15 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(12)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 15 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 30, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    What I loved: - The writing is very good. - The storyline was

    What I loved:

    - The writing is very good.

    - The storyline was somewhat mysterious, twisted and realistic.

    - The characters were all likable.

    - The romance between Chase and Hartley wasn't rushed. Everything was (and still is) going slowly. So Hartley isn't making any stupid fast decisions.

    - There were a lot of funny moments where I had to read the passages over and over because they were funny and I had to get the full meaning sync in.

    - The pace was good.

    - Sam's creation of amazing words to replace swearing is just phenomenal!! I couldn't stop grinning each time I found "Holy fluffin' fudge!".

    What I disliked:

    - Hartley's personality is somewhat different from the first book. She kept acting in a stupid way and repeating "Dude" a lot, which is not cool! (to me that is).

    - The story in some passages of the middle chapters was blank. I was not moved at all.

    - The mystery in Social Suicide wasn't that hard to solve in my opinion. I was actually able to pinpoint the killer from chapter 6. Don't get me wrong, I love being correct, but I love it when the twists and mystery are too much complicated that it makes it harder for the reader to have a clue.

    The characters:

    - Hartley is the female protagonist. She's somewhat smart and brave. She can't hide her feelings and usually goes directly to the point. She has crash on Chase, who's the school paper editor although she's not sure it is a crush and keeps convincing herself that it is nothing.

    - Chase is the male protagonist (I think). He's strong, good looking and mysterious. He rarely smiles and almost never compliments Hartley. He takes he's job at the school paper very seriously.

    - Samantha a.k.a Sam is Hartley's best friend and her number one fan and supporter. She helps Hartley throughout the story and I love how we get to know her more in this sequel and see her other sides and obsession for making Hartley her dressing doll ;).

    - Kyle is Sam's boyfriend. I wasn't expecting much from him but he turned out to be very nice! He's most known for spreading rumors but in this sequel we see that he's ready to do anything for his friends (Chase and Hartley) and girlfriend.

    There are other main characters in this story who are: Mr. Tipkins, the Math teacher. Connor, Sydney's boyfriend a.k.a ex-boyfriend. Quinn, Sydney's ex-BFF. Chris, a team member at the school paper. Nicky whom you'll need to find out who he is and others.

    Conclusion:

    This book was hilarious. It made me laugh, think, get scared and even be sad. I was somewhat disappointed but not very much.

    If you enjoy contemporary reads with less romance, more mystery and twists all about a murder, then this book is for you.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 25, 2012

    Last fall, I read and fell in love with DEADLY COOL. Author Gemm

    Last fall, I read and fell in love with DEADLY COOL. Author Gemma Halliday delivered a story with a funny, but completely sincere heroine, an awesome best friend/sidekick in Sam, a hot and mysterious semi-love interest in Chase, and an intriguing mystery. To say I had high hopes for SOCIAL SUICIDE would be an understatement. I've been bouncing to read this one for months, but made myself hold out until closer to the release. SOCIAL SUICIDE was totally worth the wait.

    Once again, teen super-sleuth (and I'll admit, busybody) Hartley Featherstone has found herself in the middle of a high school murder mystery. What is going on in San Jose, y'all? First a girl dies by iPod cord strangulation, now another dies by Twittercide?! That's right, Twittercide. I think Halliday has an acute sense for what will draw readers in. When I read the word "twittercide", I knew this book would be the LOL-fest that DEADLY COOL was.

    The fact that I still love Hartley despite the fact she does the exact opposite of the smart thing in almost every situation is a testament to her endearing qualities. Hartley is an everygirl. Smart, sincere and brave to a fault, Hartley is willing to do whatever it takes, even dressing like a chicken, to find justice for these poor girls who keep getting offed by technology.

    As for the secondary characters, I loved them even more in SOCIAL SUICIDE. Hartley's mom is still a riot, rocking out to Aerosmith in the school parking lot and forcing her to eat things like "texturized vegetable protein balls". Blech. Sam is her awesome self, maybe even more so in this book. She's now choosing clothes for her boyfriend Kyle, obsessed with her GPA and has gone from using "effing" in place of swearing to "fluffing". Too cute! And Chase. Chase is still cool, slightly broody, has that crooked smile, and is always gently nudging Hartley to her limits. I really, really love this character. I may have even put hearts around his name while taking notes. (I totally did.)

    The only flaw I found with the story is it's predictability. Having read DEADLY COOL, I could predict almost everything in the plot. I would have liked a bit more of a brain tease, but I still had a great time and enjoyed the story for what it was. And honestly, it's so much fun that I don't mind. If it's not broke, don't fix it.

    SOCIAL SUICIDE is a great addition to the DEADLY COOL series. It's a fast paced, light-hearted adventure that's sure to give you a smile on every page. And, I have to say, these books would make a great tv series or movies. I can't wait to see what Halliday serves up next.


    Favorite Quote:

    (So many great quotes. This is just one of many.)

    "This first thing I did was run. Okay, actually, the first thing I did was scream, lose my balance, flail my arms in the air like some kind of uncoordinated bird, then slide down the side of the tree and land on my butt.

    Then I ran." (pg. 31, ARC)

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2013

    New favorite book (:

    Loved every aspect of it. Wish there was more Chase.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 20, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Social Suicide is the perfect blend of mystery and humor. After

    Social Suicide is the perfect blend of mystery and humor. After having displayed skill at investigation over the course of Deadly Cool, Hartley is now a member of her school's paper and hunting down stories instead of mysteries. However, she can't seem to escape trouble, as she finds out when she discovers the body of Sydney Sanders. Hartley's need to prove that Sydney's death was a homicide (or twittercide, as her best friend Sam calls it) leads her deep into a plot brewing at school with her wit and discomfort about her growing attraction to Chase alleviating the tension.

    I adore Hartley and her friends. While the questions surrounding Sydney's death are key to the plot, the characters are the ones who bring the book to life. Hartley is a smart girl who pursues her goals with determination, yet she's also a teenager who is discomforted by her attraction towards someone she considers (or wants to see as) a friend as well as her mom's sudden announcement that she wants to date again. Sam is the best friend who's there when Hartley needs someone and who is set on playing matchmaker and costume artist for Hartley. Chase is the bad boy who just looks like one; he's there for Hartley, believing in her and supporting her in her investigation. Kyle completes the picture as Sam's boyfriend and fellow cohort in playing the cute, lovey dovey couple. If I ever needed backup on some case, I'd call in these people. Not only are they brilliant, they have personality. No job would be boring with them around.

    I appreciate how the romance plays out in the Deady Cool series. Hints have been dropped at a romance between Hartley and Chase, but they're still at the awkward friends-with-sparks-between-them stage. The two lived completely different lives before the murder of the Chastity Club's president brought them together in Deadly Cool, and they're just becoming friends. I appreciate how the two are taking their time exploring the possibility and not rushing into things. Plus, Hartley's initial denial at her attraction to Chase is cute. As for Hartley's mom, she is a woman who isn't ready to settle down; she knows what she wants just as well as Hartley does, and I enjoyed seeing how her decision to pursue a new relationship impacts her relationship with Hartley.

    Even if you haven't read Deadly Cool, it is perfectly fine to start with Social Suicide, if you so desire. It is better to start with the first book, so that you have all the details. However, Social Suicide provides some context when the situation calls for it, and you won't be missing out on anything if you start with it (like me). This is definitely my favorite mystery of the year, and I will be getting my hands on a copy of Deadly Cool as soon as humanly possible!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 25, 2012

    Urgggg

    Dieseveryine have to make there rewiews tfive paragraphs long?????????????????????????

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 25, 2012

    Cant wait to buy

    Yay im gonna buy it deadly cool is another good book buy her

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 26, 2011

    Social sucicide

    Cant wait for this book!! :-D

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 26, 2011

    Yea!

    I can't wait for this book!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2014

    Great!

    This is an easy, breezy, fun and fast paced book! It is a great book for teens as well.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 18, 2013

    Best myster murder book i ever read

    I loved how gemma wrote the book from many different chareters perspectives and also just how she chose to write the book. I love how she wrote the chapters by explaining many different events all in the same chapter and towards the end of some chapters have an unexpected ending. Another favorite part was how she spaced out the crimes that occured in the book so for each crime she could give you just enough info to have a small idea of whats going on. Then she cuts you off and has another crime show up an hve you wanting to know how both had happened but also to help you relize how both crimes are connected in a way. Overall the book was fantastic and kept me wanting to keep reading until I found out what happened in the part of the book

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 2, 2012

    This book was just plain fun. The story and characters were fun

    This book was just plain fun. The story and characters were fun, and the story moved along at a nice pace. Didn't realize this is the book after Deadly Cool, but now that I've read this, I'm going to pick up Deadly Cool too. Highly recommended.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 31, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    H is for Hilarious - 4 stars from The Bawdy Book Blog

    Hartley Featherstone just can’t seem to stay away from dead bodies. Hilarity ensues.
    A fun and S-is-for-Sizzling follow-up to Deadly Cool, Gemma Halliday delivers more of the witty writing style I loved in Social Suicide!
    The probable Homecoming Queen, Sydney Sanders, has been suspended for cheating on a test when she “suicides” by throwing herself into her pool with her plugged-in laptop. The clincher? She had an appointment with Hartley, now a journalist for her school paper, that afternoon to do a “tell-all” on the cheating scandal. So did she really commit suicide after sending one last tweet? Or was she pushed?
    Gemma Halliday delivers more of her signature mocking, sarcastic tones in Social Suicide, the Young Adult sophomore follow-up to her first Hartley Featherstone novel, Deadly Cool.
    Having solved the murder cases of two dead girls (one who banged her ex-boyfriend), she’s now working for the school paper, the Herbert Hoover High Homepage. (The author’s penchant for alliteration makes me laugh). As a journalist on the paper, Chase, her hot bad-boy editor, and savior extraordinaire, has assigned the cheating scandal to her, and she’s determined to find a unique angle, one that nobody knows. Except Sydney Sanders dies of Twittercide (death while tweeting) and now Hartley must find out who the killer is – before the killer finds her first.
    I said it before and I’ll say it again: Halliday has really struck gold with a young adult series that also incorporates the mystery and thriller genres into the mix. The young adult genre has lacked, as a blogger friend put it once, a good Nancy Drew-like series for a while now, and it’s refreshing to find in these books what I found in the Nancy Drew books as a kid (albeit generations newer). Halliday writes her characters with wit and realism, although I still find it a bit implausible that three teenagers can solve a crime before the local law enforcement can. However, looking back, Nancy Drew did much the same thing, so these books get a free pass.
    The plot was a little more intricate than Deadly Cool; less people died, the whodunit was a little more complicated (in that more people had legitimate motives). It was highly entertaining, even if some of the pieces (like “Twittercide”) were a bit ridiculous. Can you really be electrocuted by falling into the pool with your laptop plugged in (how small/large does a body of water have to be)? I thought it just shorted out. I did a quick Google search and apparently yes, you can be electrocuted by dropping a laptop into a pool if it’s plugged in. *Note to self*
    I continued to enjoy the relationships between Hartley and the secondary characters in the novel, but specifically Chase, her mother and Sam. I especially liked the new awkward relationship between Hart and her mom, as her mom began dating, and Hartley learns to deal with the uncomfortable feeling of her mom trolling the internet for dudes. (I’ve totally been in your shoes, Hart, I GET YOU. *shudders*). Her relationship with Chase is especially tense, Halliday skipping along, toying with her readers as these two should-be lovebirds clash together in a storm of sarcasm, fun and heat. As a reader, I WANT them to get together, and that’s exactly what Halliday wants me to feel. The anticipation might be the best part of their relationship!
    All around, if you enjoyed Deadly Cool, you’ll love Social Suicide.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 4, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 23, 2014

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2013

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