Truly, Madly, Deadlyby Hannah Jayne
"What a ride! Full of twists and turnsincluding an ending you won't see coming!"April Henry, New York Times bestselling author of The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die
They Said It Was An Accident...
Sawyer Dodd is a star athlete, a straight-A student, and the envy of every other girl who wants to date Kevin Anderson./strong>/em>/em>
"What a ride! Full of twists and turnsincluding an ending you won't see coming!"April Henry, New York Times bestselling author of The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die
They Said It Was An Accident...
Sawyer Dodd is a star athlete, a straight-A student, and the envy of every other girl who wants to date Kevin Anderson. When Kevin dies in a tragic car crash, Sawyer is stunned. Then she opens her locker to find a note:
Someone saw what he did to her. Someone knows that Sawyer and Kevin weren't the perfect couple they seemed to be. And that someonea killeris now shadowing Sawyer's every move...
"What a ride! Full of twists and turns-including an ending you won't see coming!" - April Henry, New York Times bestselling author of The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die
"A fast-paced thriller . . . an engaging balance of atmosphere and action." - Kirkus
"[A] tense psychological piece . . . Jayne delivers a healthy dose of paranoia amid the story's growing tension." - Publishers Weekly
"The characters are well developed and multidimensional, no matter how big or small their role. A solidly good novel-an enjoyable read." - RT Book Reviews
""A heart-pounding narrative . . . If you're looking for a suspenseful whodunit with a cinematic climax, this fits the bill."" - Booklist
Read an Excerpt
"Thank you for coming."
The words rose and fell on the soft pile carpet, and Sawyer wondered whether she should brush the small ball of fuzz from Kevin's earlobe. It stuck there, stark and white against the dark navy blue of his suit.
"I couldn't have gotten through today without you," Mrs. Anderson said, squeezing Sawyer's ice-cold hand.
Sawyer knew she should say something comforting, something warm and thoughtful, but all she could focus on was that little bit of fuzz on Kevin's left ear.
"They said it was immediate," someone whispered. "They said he was drunk."
Sawyer had heard those words tumble over and over in her mind every minute for the past forty-eight hours. It was immediate, Kevin was drunk, he didn't stand a chance. She wasn't crying-couldn't anymore-as she stared down at Kevin. His eyes were closed, his lips slightly parted, and his hands were gently crossed against his chest. Sawyer couldn't help but think from somewhere dark, somewhere deep inside of her, that at least he couldn't hurt her anymore.
"You must be devastated."
Sawyer felt Mr. Hanson, her Spanish teacher, lay a gentle hand on her shoulder. She shrunk away, the smell of lilies suddenly overwhelmingly cloying. "I'll be right back."
She took the stairs two at a time, her black ballet flats falling soundlessly on the carpet. She paused on the top floor landing when she saw the girl at the end of the hall.
The girl blinked at Sawyer.
She was tall and thin-unfortunately so-with a boyish body that was all edges and angles. Her long brown hair was looped in a herringbone braid that fell over one shoulder, and baby hairs stood up in a static-y halo around her head, shot out from the loose weave of the braid. The girl's eyes looked like they may have been velvety brown and deeply alive once, but they were sunken and flat now. Her full lips were barely pink and pulled down at the edges. This girl wore her mourning black like a second skin.
Sawyer swallowed; the girl swallowed.
Sawyer paused for a full beat before tugging self-consciously at her braid, then averted her eyes from the mirror that reflected a girl she scarcely recognized. She continued down the hall, moving quickly.
She knew from nights lying to her parents and sneaking, shoeless, past his parents' room that Kevin's door was the last one on the left. She slipped in there on a sigh, clicking the door shut softly behind her. A curl-edged painting was scotch taped to the back of Kevin's door and Sawyer, stunned, fingered it softly. It was a beach scene she had painted the first day Kevin spoke to her. They were in art class and she was lost in her own brush strokes, squinting, leaning close to make the crush of the waves as realistic as possible.
"You're really good," he had said, his chin jutting toward the scene. Sawyer could still feel the overwhelming heat in her cheeks as her index finger followed the curl of foam on the forever-still water.
She heard a soft breath in the yellowing light that filtered through the blinds and cracked across the painting. "The recruiter came to see him, you know."
Mr. Anderson said it without turning around. Kevin's father was perched on the end of his son's bed; his head was bowed and his back was toward her, but Sawyer could see that his fingers were working the silky fabric of Kevin's number twenty-one Hawthorne Hornets football jersey while an army of gold plated football trophies looked on.
"He talked about marrying you." Mr. Anderson looked over his shoulder then, his watery blue eyes finding Sawyer, a reminiscing half smile on his chapped lips. "He said that he'd get into Cal and you'd get into the Art Institute and that would be it."
Sawyer tried to smile, tried to remember the moments when she and Kevin would sprawl in the grass, her hand finding his as they talked about a future that was far off and pristine, that sloughed off divorce and jealousy and high school pressures and rivalries. She remembered telling Kevin that she wanted to go to the Art Institute, remembered the far-off look in his eyes when a smile snaked across his lips.
"What?" she said, barely able to keep the grin from her lips.
Kevin shook his head and squeezed Sawyer's hand gently. "How perfect is that? I'll go to Cal, be the dashing football star, and you'll be across the bay at the Art Institute painting portraits of your beloved."
"Portraits of John Lennon? I think I'd get tired of that."
Kevin tugged at her arm-gently, softly-and Sawyer slipped into his lap, loving the feeling of his arms wrapped around her. She felt so safe, so warm, and when his lips nuzzled her ear, she felt the spark move low in her belly.
Now the memory caught in her throat. That was when things were good, she told herself.
Mr. Anderson sucked in a sharp breath that brought Sawyer back to the present; she looked up just in time to see Kevin's father double over himself, heavy hands hugging his sides. There was no sound except the ragged tear of his breath as he cried.
Sawyer felt her bottom lip quiver, and when she pinched her eyes shut, she saw Kevin, cheeks pink and alive, lips pressed up into that half smile he shared with his father. In her mind's eye, that grin turned into a snarl. She heard the sickening smack of skin against skin in her head. She reeled, feeling the sting again.
"He loved you so much."
Sawyer felt Kevin's warm breath, heard the deep rumble of his voice as he told her he loved her for the first time. She remembered the shiver that zinged from the top of her head to the base of her spine, amazed, delighted, enraptured. Kevin-Kevin Anderson, the most popular boy in school-loved her. She was everything in that moment when Kevin's fingertips brushed against the small of her back, when his lips pressed up against hers. Her life-her family-had splintered. Her mother had moved across the country, her father loved another woman, but Kevin Anderson wanted Sawyer. He wanted Sawyer Dodd, and that made her feel real. She wanted to hold on to that moment, was desperate to hold on to that moment and nothing else-not when he got angry, not when she made him mad, not the tear-racked apologies that followed.
Sawyer nodded, the tears slipping over her cheeks. "I loved him too."
The mood at school on Monday was somber, and Sawyer was tired of people averting their stares when she walked by. Third-period choir was her favorite escape, and when she slipped into the band room, she couldn't help but grin when Chloe Coulter, seated on the piano with long legs kicking, caught her eye.
"Sawyer!" Chloe vaulted off the piano, her blond ponytail flailing behind her. She tackled Sawyer in an enthusiastic hug, not caring as students shoved past them.
"How are you?" Chloe's eyes were a bright, clear blue, and today they were wide and sympathetic, framed by too-dark black lashes and heavy brows. "Are you okay?"
Sawyer nodded slowly, and her best friend squeezed her hand, then blew out a sigh. "Did you just get back in town?"
Chloe waved a pink late pass. "Yeah." Her eyes searched Sawyer. "I'm so sorry, Sawyer. I wish I could have been there. Was it awful? It was awful, wasn't it? I should have been there with you. God, I suck."
Sawyer swallowed hard. "It was your grandmother's ninetieth birthday. No one expected you to come back."
"But I would have," Chloe said, blond ponytail bobbing.
"I can't believe he's gone," Maggie Gaines said, her ski-jump nose a heady red. She was flanked on either side by stricken onlookers who offered condolences and Kleenex as Maggie murmured to them in a voice just loud enough to be overheard. When she caught Sawyer staring, Maggie's glossy eyes went immediately hard and sharp.
"Look at her," Chloe spat. "Kevin was your boyfriend, but Maggie needs to be the inconsolable center of attention. That should be you."
Sawyer shrunk back into her baggy sweatshirt. "Let her have her moment," she mumbled. "They dated for a while too."
Chloe snorted. "Like a hundred years ago."
Mr. Rose kicked open the side door and shoved a costume rack into the choir room. The student chatter died down and kids leaned forward, eyes glued to the new choir uniforms.
"Ladies and gentlemen," Mr. Rose started, "I know you've all been waiting with bated breath to see what you're wearing for this year's regionals."
The group groaned as a well-tuned whole.
The Hawthorne High Honeybee choir was known for only two things: being four-time back-to-back national champions and having the ugliest uniforms known to man. Sawyer's freshman year featured an army green taffeta number with balloon sleeves and lace inlays for the girls, and equally unattractive green velvet blazers for the guys. Sophomore year the budget was cut, and the Honeybee choir showed up looking like an exceptionally well-tuned army of white-vested waiters. At the end of last year, the school had taken "pity" on the choir and offered up some leftover graduation gowns onto which the costume department had stitched fighting hornets and musical notes. That was what the group was expecting when Mr. Rose began his excited introduction.
"So, without further ado..." Mr. Rose pulled the black sheet off the costume bar and a collective "ah" sailed through the classroom. Maggie stopped sniffing into her Kleenex, Chloe gasped, and Sawyer sat up straighter.
With one hand, Mr. Rose held up a simple black satin sheath dress, its waist cinched with a thick red satin sash. In the other hand, he offered a black blazer with a red tie. The Honeybees cheered.
Mr. Rose, apple cheeks pushed up into a full-face smile, beamed. "The school board heard your fashion protests and decided-finally-that the Singing Honeybees should look like five-time regional champions!"
Once the students had dropped back into some semblance of order, Mr. Rose handed out the plastic-wrapped garments. When he got to Sawyer he paused, giving her the sympathetic smile she was so quickly growing tired of seeing. He rested a soft hand on her shoulder, cocked his head. "Are you doing okay, Sawyer?"
Sawyer took her dress and offered him a small smile. "Yeah, I am. Thanks Mr. Rose."
"You know, I'd like for the Honeybees to add a small tribute number to Kevin in our set list. He was such a big part of the Hornet community."
Sawyer felt a lump growing in her throat and she nodded. "That sounds nice. Kevin would have liked that."
"I'd like to feature you in a solo for that number." Mr. Rose's eyes were kind, his puffy gray eyebrows high, expectant. "Would that be okay with you?"
Sawyer nodded mutely, dread, excitement, sadness, and anxiety welling up inside her all at once. "Thank you, Mr. Rose," she finally managed.
Mr. Rose passed Sawyer and Chloe, continuing his costume distribution to the other Honeybees. Chloe leaned in, excitement evident on her face.
"A solo?" she asked breathlessly. "Oh my God, that's awesome! It just sucks that-" Chloe avoided Sawyer's eyes, looked at her own hands folded in her lap. "It just sucks that Kevin couldn't be here to hear you."
Sawyer tried to form a response or a cohesive sentence, but nothing came out.
Mr. Rose took his spot behind the piano, and the Honeybees did their warm-ups. At the last note, he beckoned to Sawyer. She made her way to the front of the class, feeling the heat of all eyes on her. When she turned, it was just Maggie, her eyes narrowed, challenging. Sawyer offered a small noncombative smile that Maggie ignored.
We used to be friends, Sawyer heard herself plead silently.
Maggie's hate rolled off her in waves.
When the bell rang, Sawyer and Chloe gathered up their backpacks and new uniforms, and headed toward the door. Maggie, arms crossed in front of her chest, stopped Sawyer dead in her tracks.
"A solo?" she said. Her eyes raked over Sawyer, the distaste evident.
"Can you move, please? I need to get to my locker before fourth." She was too tired to deal with one of Maggie's jealous rages.
But Maggie remained in Sawyer's way.
"Do you think I'm going to fall for you and your stupid little ‘woe is me' act? Doubtful. You don't deserve this solo, and you didn't deserve Kevin. A real girlfriend wouldn't be able to pull herself together, let alone do a solo."
Sawyer wanted to fight back, but she was exhausted and emotionless. Maybe Maggie was right-she didn't deserve to be Kevin's girlfriend-didn't deserve to be at the blunt end of his anger, a small voice inside her head nagged. Sawyer shook it off and shoved Maggie aside with more force than she meant.
"Lay off, Maggie."
"Get over yourself," Sawyer heard Chloe growl. "Sawyer doesn't need to play the chick who can't get herself together-you do it too well. It's just too bad you've been doing it ever since Kevin dumped you. When was that exactly? Nine, ten months ago now? Little long to be carrying a flame, don't you think?" Chloe flicked a lock of Maggie's long hair, then wrinkled her nose. "It's probably time to drag your obsessively depressed ass into the shower. It'll make us all feel better."
Chloe shoved past Maggie and linked arms with Sawyer, steering her down the hall.
"You didn't have to do that," Sawyer said, hiking her backpack over one shoulder. "I can handle Maggie."
Chloe's blue eyes went wide and baby-doll innocent. "Oh, honey. I didn't do it for you." She blinked, a wry smile spreading across her passion-pink lips. "I did it for me."
"Hola, señoras." Mr. Hanson was the school's sole Spanish teacher, but at barely thirty years old, he looked more like a student than a faculty member. He edged his way between Sawyer and Chloe and grinned, while a hallway full of girls drooled. "Perdon, perdon. Ah, Sawyer! Has estudiado para la prueba?" he said, looking expectantly at her.
Sawyer felt the redness bloom in her cheeks and shifted her weight. "Um, si, señor."
"Bueno!" A wide smile spread across Mr. Hanson's face, his eyes crinkling with the effort.
"Ohmigod, what did he just say to you?"
Sawyer shrugged. "Honestly, I have no idea. My stock answers are si, no, or the often used ‘how do you say menstrual cramps in Spanish'?"
Chloe wrinkled her nose. "Ew."
"They never ask you to translate that sombrero thing if they think you've got cramps."
Chloe watched the back of Mr. Hanson's head as he disappeared into Principal Chappie's office. "Screw French. I'm transferring into Spanish."
"You were bound to waste it on some French Canadian anyway."
"Don't you love him?"
Sawyer glanced over her shoulder, caught the last of Mr. Hanson's dark hair as he disappeared into the office. "Don't you think he's a little overeager?"
"Please. Half my teachers don't even know my first name. Hanson's like, fresh out of teacher school, or whatever, and still hopeful. He still believes in us." Chloe batted her eyelashes sweetly.
"Besides, I heard he gave Libby a ride home the other day."
Sawyer unzipped her backpack. "And I'm sure she thanked him appropriately."
Chloe crossed her arms in front of her chest, bored now. "Are we still on for tomorrow night?"
"You mean our convocation?"
"Ooh, convocation. SAT word?"
Sawyer laughed. "My ticket out of suburban hell. Let me call you about tomorrow, though. Dad and wife number two are finding out the sex-slash-species of The Spawn. I'm sure they'll want to do something educational and emotionally satisfying out of their Blended Families/Blended Lives book."
"Ah, another evening rubbing placenta on each other and worshipping the moon?"
Sawyer sighed. "Are you sure you don't want me to come over and watch your parents' passive aggression as they avoid each other while showing their extreme disappointment in your choices?"
Chloe folded a stick of gum into her mouth and chewed thoughtfully. "Hell no. Wednesday is fried chicken and mac-and-cheese-as-vegetable night at the double wide. That dysfunction is all mine. And they're not my parents-Lois and Dean are my guardians."
Sawyer cocked her head, her arms crossed in front of her chest. "Not mom and stepdud anymore?"
"Hopefully not. Haven't seen Dean in over a week. And I'm using the guardian thing so hopefully Lois will finally cave in and admit that I'm adopted."
Sawyer grinned. "Except that you are the spitting image of your mother."
"Sawyer Dodd, that is a horrible thing to say."
"Of course. A thousand apologies. I take it back."
"Better." Chloe blew Sawyer an air kiss. "I'll be waiting by the phone with greasy fingers for your call."
"I'll have the ambulance on standby," Sawyer called over her shoulder.
She grinned, watching her best friend skip down the hall. For the first time in what seemed like forever, things felt normal and light again.
"Excuse me." Logan Haas smiled shyly at Sawyer and she stepped aside, letting him get into the locker under hers. Logan bore the unlucky high school triumvirate of being slight, short, and nearsighted, but Sawyer liked him.
"Hey, sorry," she said.
Logan stacked his books, slammed his locker shut, gave Sawyer an awkward salute, and headed down the hall, eyes glued to his shoes. Sawyer spun her combination lock and yanked the door open, her lips forming a little o of surprise when she did so. Amongst her neatly stacked binders and books was a short, fat envelope in a pale mint green. Her name was printed on it in a handwriting font. She took the envelope and looked over both shoulders; no one milled about, red-faced or smiling, indicating that they had slipped the note in her locker.
She tore the envelope open and pulled out a matching mint green folded card, a tiny plain oak leaf embossed on the bottom. When she opened it, a clipped newspaper article slipped out. Sawyer didn't have to read the headline to know what it said: "Local High School Student Killed In Car Wreck." She swallowed down a cry and read the note on the card.
It said, simply,
Meet the Author
Hannah Schwartz lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and writes cozy mysteries, young adult fiction, chick lit, and grocery lists that she never seems to remember to bring to the grocery store. Hannah shares a house with two neurotic, feet-attacking cats and has Kryptonite-like weakness for donuts. Visit www.hannahjschwartz.com.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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I will tell you the truth now. At first, when I started reading Truly, Madly, Deadly by Hannah Jayne, I was ready to write it off. The main reason being just how annoyed I got with main character, Sawyer Dodd. But then…the twist of all twists happens, and what I thought I knew about this story blew my mind and I ended up really enjoying the read in its entirety. After the death of her abusive boyfriend, Sawyer Dodd is slowly trying to get her life back on track. Perhaps even date again. But when a mysterious note appears in her locker, with a clipping of the article related to her boyfriend’s death, the words “You’re welcome” are enough of a hint that things are not always as they seem, and someone who thinks that they have done the biggest favor for Sawyer (by relieving her of an abusive relationship), ends up taking a somewhat fatal attraction to Sawyer. With different pieces of the puzzle slowing clicking together, Sawyer decides to take it upon herself to solve some of the mystery on her own. But with someone obviously watching her every move, how will Sawyer know who to trust, and who to watch out for? And at what cost? What I really enjoyed was how the identity of her stalker isn’t revealed until the very end. And even when it is revealed, I honestly didn’t even consider this person as one of the suspects! That, my friends, is how to write a great mystery/whodunit. Leave the reader guessing until the very end, and then throw in the OMG factor. And for that, I must say, “Well done, Ms. Jayne…well done…!” I also couldn’t help but get caught up in the fact that Sawyer was in an abusive relationship, unbeknownst to anyone else…except for her stalker, of course. It was heart breaking to read as she relived the downfall of her relationship. The beautiful, sweet beginnings right down to the destructive, ugly end where Sawyer finally takes a stand and says NO MORE. I really enjoyed that everyone in the book was a potential suspect. I was left guessing and rethinking who the culprit was, only to be foiled! What did annoy me was how Sawyer didn’t go directly to the authorities, or talk to anyone in general. Instead, she kept it in, suspected everyone…and bad things continue to happen. Even when she finally decides that the time has come to speak to someone about it, it was like pulling teeth having her decide whether to spill, or continue to harbor her secret. And with what happens in her home and the baby room? Ummmm…why didn’t she say “No, it wasn’t me!”? Why continue the farce of everything is hunky dory and yes, I’m probably a little angry and rebellious so I will pretend that I destroyed everything… That definitely annoyed me. All in all, Truly, Madly, Deadly by Hannah Jayne, is definitely worth the read. Especially for fans of suspense type reads with a Fatal Attraction type feel to it.
The book begins with Kevin Anderson's memorial service. Kevin was Sawyer Dodd's boyfriend. Everyone, well almost everyone, thought they had the perfect relationship. His family, friends, and loved ones were all in shock when he was killed in a drunk driving accident, and assumed Sawyer was to. What they are unaware of is the cycle of abuse that Sawyer has lived in. Yes, Kevin physically abused Sawyer, to the point where his anticipated reaction to things controlled her every action. Finally, she has got the courage to break up with him, only to find out the next morning that he is dead. While sad that he is dead, she can't help but feel a little relieved.....that is until she gets a note in her locker containing a clipping from the newspaper about Kevin's death with and two simple words, "your welcome." Gripped with fear, she realizes, someone knows. Someone knows about their relationship and the abuse, but who? When the police question her about Kevin's death, investigating what they believe may not have been an accident at all, Sawyer isn't sure what to do or who to trust, even the police, and this is only the beginning of a series of events that will leaves Sawyer, her family, friends, and the town devastated. Though Kevin Anderson is dead when the story begins, there are scenes where Sawyer remembers or has flashbacks throughout the book regarding things that have happened in the past, so you get a feel of what Kevin was like, the things that happened, and what she went through. What begins with a note that says "your welcome" crescendos into a series of events that are both chilling and thrilling, as you journey along with Sawyer while she tries to find out who she can trust and who is the actual killer committing all these heinous crimes, who also claims to be her secret admirer. Everyone seems to be a suspect. Truly, Madly, Deadly kept me on the edge of my seat from beginning to end as I tried to figure out "who done it," right along with Sawyer, as she sorted through who the possible suspects could be and their motive, all the while not knowing who she could and could not trust. Truly, Madly, Deadly is filled with suspense, mystery, drama, is psychologically thrilling, and is even coupled with a little romance. I thoroughly enjoyed this book from beginning to end. Truly, Madly, Deadly is highly captivating and entertaining and I most definitely would recommend it.
The idea was wonderful, and I really wanted to love this book. However, the execution left much to be desired. There were several plot holes and inconsistencies that left me cringeing. For example, when one character is found dead from an apparent suicide, police mention that the suicide note claimed the person was being bullied. A few scenes later, the person who found the body replies in the negative when asked if there was a note. I also wanted there to be more character development. The characters and their relationships to one another felt a little flat. More dimension would have added to the mystery and suspense. "Truly, Madly, Deadly" has a great framework, but it reads more like a rough draft than a finished novel. It needs a little more polishing, in my opinion.
I really like this book.The action and the mystery on this story is perfect. I never read this kind of story, just see it on movies, on tv. I'm glad that someone thought to read some kind of story and have the opportunity to read it. I saw this book, i think, a year ago on some blog, and a was so fascinated about the description and the cover, that i knew i;m gonna read it in some point. I was a little scary, because i was the review here, on Goodreads and most of the people didn't like it so much. So i was afraid that i don`t like it too. My opinion is not to take much in account those review. Just read the description, because maybe you will love it. I'm honestly saying, that in some point, in the book, the action was kind of lame. Make me wanna live the book, and go to beat to sleep. But is just that part. Some chapters: one or two. That's all, and the book is back to that wonderful, mystery, action. And maybe you will hate the ending to, because after you were so deep in the story you want some closure. But it is not such a fine closure. I mean, not for me. Anyway, read the book, because, trust me, she deserve to give it a try. :)
This book has to be one of my favorites Mystery and love both mixed wonderfully together in this story. I highly recommend this book :)
This book is just brilliant! Keeps you in suspense and gives you a twisted ending. I highly recommend this book.
Loved this book so much! One of the best books ive read and i hate reading but i couldnt stop reading it.
So Far So Good C:
"You're welcome". Simple words of complaisant nature. But what if they were to be connected to a car accident that killed a student? Sawyer Dodd was the girlfriend of said student and she is the one who receives a note with exactly those words on it. That's what got me promptly hooked on the story of TRULY, MADLY, DEADLY. Seemingly friendly intentions and gestures lead to misjudgements and even murder. It's pretty creepy and instant-goosebumps inducing that the lines between right, wrong, imagination and reality can blur and be manipulated to such fatal extents. After the first, the killer keeps sending notes, and every time Sawyer found a new one chills ran down my spine. Some even made me laugh, they were just so plain impudent. TRULY, MADLY, DEADLY is set in a small town. Don't you think they are the best for a good killing spree to be set? Stories like Sawyer's always make me feel like space in town is narrowing down with every scary incident. Even Sawyer's own home doesn't feel safe anymore. It's the never-knowing, always wondering what or who's lurking in the shadows that drives up your adrenaline and demands a certain level of fright and alertness. Unlike other killers this one only means to be helpful and do good. The person is fixed on eliminating people who could mean harm to Sawyer. This killer scared me very much, because he's killing out of love which is one of the strongest pulls to commit a crime. He is obsessive and uncontrollable in his stalker behavior and it's no wonder that you suspect everyone who's seen around Sawyer at some point in the story. After Kevin's accident everyone expects Sawyer to mourn the death of her perfect relationship and her popular and caring boyfriend. She's doing her best to pretend, to look hurt on the outside. Secretly she's relieved she's found a way out of their relationship. What started as something innocent and good had long turned into something unhealthy for Sawyer who more often posed as Kevin's punching bag. Knowing that background info Sawyer's story certainly gains a new stage of graveness. But for my taste there wasn't enough emphasis on Kevin's abusive behavior and I would have wanted to know more about Sawyer's past. All the elements for a well-written thriller YA are there (and that's what mainly counts), it are just the sometimes missing depth of detail and lacking focus on romantic aspects that could have been improved. Even when I pick up a YA book knowing it's a thriller I can't resist to expect a great love story hidden between all the action, so I would have been perfectly content with a few more detailed scenes about Sawyer's new romance. 4/5 **** TRULY, MADLY, DEADLY - Admirer turned stalker turned killer. An intense and menacingly good YA thriller debut! When I saw TRULY, MADLY, DEADLY on Netgalley I somehow assumed it was Hannah Jayne's debut novel until I discovered that she had written another series which is urban fantasy. Her writing shows that she isn't new to the business. And even though I always preferred thrillers with mystery or fantastical elements strewn into the story, TRULY, MADLY, DEADLY is in no way inferior to them. There will be two more YA trhillers set in Sawyer's neighborhood and I'll make sure to put both on top of my wishlist.
4.5 Stars 'Truly, Madly, Deadly' is a taut young adult mystery/thriller that had me hooked from the first chapter. It follows main character Sawyer Dodd, whose boyfriend, Kevin, has just died in a tragic car accident. Or so she and everyone else thought. After Kevin's funeral, Sawyer gets a cryptic note in her locker that simply states "You're welcome" and it's signed from "an admirer." Things don't seem so cut and dry with Kevin's death anymore and Sawyer wonders if someone found out the truth about their relationship - and the fact that it had become abusive. Strange and deadly occurrences keep happening to those who upset or hurt Sawyer, always accompanied by a note from "an admirer." Who is this mysterious person so willing to kill for Sawyer's sake? And just what exactly do they want? This was a fantastic YA thriller that had me eagerly turning the pages to see what was going to happen next. The plot was very well done with a very quick pace and tons of twists and turns throughout the book that kept me guessing until the very end. I love reading thrillers - I always try to figure out the killer before the characters do - but this one really had me stumped through the majority of the book. I really loved all the red herrings the author threw in the mix to keep things up in the air and the ending was completely unexpected - I was seriously caught off guard! The characters are really well written. They were all realistic and easy to identify with - especially Sawyer. She's been through a really horrible and tragic event with her boyfriend's death, but on top of that she has to deal with her parent's divorce, a new (and now pregnant) step-mom, and the guilt she feels for Kevin's death. Add in the fact that Kevin was abusing her physically and a stalker - and things are definitely hard to handle. Sawyer kept her cool through most of it - trying the best she could. I liked that although she felt guilty about Kevin and his death, she also knew that she didn't deserve to be abused and that things were over between them. I also liked that she found a new romance in the book and it helped her to heal a bit and begin to move forward. The writing itself was really exceptional with vivid detail and descriptions that had me feeling like I was right alongside Sawyer the entire time. Very highly recommended for fans of mystery and thrillers! Disclosure: I received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Truly, Madly, Deadly was freaking fabulous. It was thrilling, creepy, entertaining, and most of all gripping. It seriously kept me on my toes in terms of trying to figure out who the killer is. I am a huge fan of crime shows such as The Mentalist and Criminal Minds. Because of how much I watch them I tend to easily pick up on the tiniest hints and stories so I tend to always figure out the culprit quickly, which is why I haven't read a good murder mystery in a while, but then comes along this one! Sawyer's boyfriend died of a presumed drunk driving accident, however Sawyer finds out that someone murdered him, and now that someone will do everything, even kill more people, to keep Sawyer from getting hurt again. I find novels like those deliciously creepy and am able to read them in a sitting if they are good, and believe me, Truly, Madly, Deadly is so good. While I was able to guess who the killer at the beginning, Hannah Jayne's way of laying out the plot and making everyone seem like the culprit (but in such a subtle way) that I was doubting myself throughout the whole novel. Very tiny hints were dropped about each person that make you think that maybe this is the killer, and not that one. I was playing Guess Who? (if you guys know this game) till the last couple of pages before the killer was revealed, then I had my "AHA!" moment. Sawyer as a protagonist was great; Jayne portrayed her in a realistic way. Sawyer was not perfect by any means, she kept the letter from her family, friends, and even the police. I personally would have ran to the police station and handed it to them, but she decided to do this on her own. However things escalated from then on and I believe her decisions and action was well thought out and she tried to protect her family, even if it meant implicating her in some serious business. Overall, Truly, Madly, Deadly was able to keep me engaged and at the edge of my seat throughout the whole book. It is one of the best thriller/murder YA novels I have read in a while and I can't wait to pick up any new books released by Ms. Hannah Jayne!
A good book?
Great story. Keeps you on your toes!!!
:) great book
I am 11 years old an i read this in one whole day. Anyways this story is awesome during the last part when that girl when crazy i was sweating so much.