by Gina Ciocca


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Busted by Gina Ciocca

Catching cheaters and liars is a lucrative hobby—until you fall for one of the suspects. Perfect for fans of Veronica Mars, this new novel from the author of Last Year's Mistake will steal your heart!

Marisa never planned to be a snoop for hire. It wasn't like she wanted to catch her best friend's boyfriend making out with another girl. But as her reputation for sniffing out cheaters spreads all over school, Marisa finds herself the reluctant queen of busting two-timing boys.

And her next case? It's for ex-frenemy Kendall. She's convinced her boyfriend, TJ, has feelings for someone else and persuades Marissa to start spying on him. But the more Marisa gets to know sincere and artistic TJ, the more she starts to fall for him. Worse yet, the feelings seem to be mutual. Marisa knows she needs to give up her investigation—and the spoken-for guy who may just be the love of her life. Then she uncovers new secrets about Kendall and TJ, secrets that take "cheater" to a whole new level...

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781492654292
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Publication date: 01/02/2018
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 147,644
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 7.70(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 14 - 17 Years

About the Author

Gina Ciocca graduated from the University of Connecticut with a degree in English, but in her mind, she never left high school. She relocated from Connecticut to Georgia, where she lives with her husband and son. When she's not reading or writing, you can find her taking long walks around the lake in her neighborhood. Gina can also be found online at writersblog-gina.blogspot.com, on Instagram as gmciocca, and Twitter as gmc511.

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Busted 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
Anonymous 30 days ago
Great fast-paced narrative! Although some slow scenes mixed in, the twist is suspenseful enough for some enjoyable “unputdownable” reading! Thanks to the author for getting me out of my reading slump and falling back into the world of YA without tired and corny gimmicks! Busted is a must read if you love a cute twist!
Becky Pennington More than 1 year ago
I had to give this book 5 stars because it is adorable and I loved all the characters! What a fun read. I read this book in one sitting because it was fast and lots of things were going on to hold my interest. The story follows Marisa, a high school girl who wants to be a journalist. One day she caught her best friend's boyfriend cheating and that is when the adventures begin. This is a coming of age story with lots of friendships, love interests, mystery solving and even crafting. I would highly recommend this book to everyone who love contemporary stories with a little "who done it?"
TheLiteraryPhoenix More than 1 year ago
Disclaimer: I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. Need a private eye? Call Marisa Palmera. Marissa didn’t ask to be the town’s resident PI, but after she catches her best friend’s boyfriend cheating on her, the title falls comfortably on her shoulders. Presented with a case to spy on a childhood friend’s boyfriend, Marisa quickly learns that not everything is what it appears to me, and sometimes, she can’t even trust her own instincts. She must choose where to lay her loyalties – with an old friend? Or with the boy she thinks is betraying her? Busted is a quick read, filled with it’s fair share of interesting characters, new love and love lost, and of course… betrayal. I flew through this book. I don’t read much contemporary, and silly love stories make me roll my eyes, but the distrust and intrigue in this book reminds me of my childhood. Unfortunately. If you like hysterical girls and shady boys and bitter exes, this is a good book for you. And despite all the drama (and BOY was there drama) I read this in two days. I liked Marisa, even though she was naive, because it was clear that she had a good heart. And you want to root for her, because you quickly realize that most other people in the story are terrible. As for who is on her side, and who is a liar? I’ll let you figure that out yourself. Other small, good things? Marisa has two loving, doting parents and a brother who is also her friend. Yay, healthy family dynamics! Even though she is smart, Marisa is limited by her family’s means. I don’t see this frequently in any literature but it’s a very real and very comment state of being. I love how crafty everyone is? As in… creatively inclined, not excellent plotters (although that also). This story is interesting, but not unique. The summary itself flaunts its similarities to Veronica Mars. The plot of “someone’s boyfriend might be cheating, oh no!” is definitely nothing new. But it was still a fun story to read and I appreciate some of the descriptions used by Ciocco to describe the weather, scenery, and relationships she writes about. Although this story takes place in late autumn, it’s a light, easy read. I think this one would be a perfect quick read with a cup of hot chocolate as the wind gets crisp and the last leaves fall. I’d recommend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is certainly not my first time at the rodeo when it comes to reading a Gina Ciocca story as I loved Last Year's Mistake. Busted was certainly not a disappointment: I'm in love with Ciocca's writing style, her swoon-worthy romance, and her emphasis on friendships. Busted was simply an adorable and fun novel. Oh, Marissa! She is just a darling. Busted begins with her catching a cheater in the act and the story evolves from there. Because maybe, just maybe, catching cheaters is her calling. What I liked most about Marissa was how enigmatic her character was - she was both steadfast in her principles but also flawed to a tee. And that, my friends, is what makes wonderful main character. The choices she's confronted with, along with the decisions she has to make, are the main reasons the stakes in this story exist in the first place. Hooked from the first page, Marissa is a girl's girl. She has the most magnificent friendships with Charlie and Mindy that it's easy to see how the balance of the universe begins to shift when her old friend Kendall enters the picture. A mystery begins to unravel as soon as Kendall enters the picture because she gets wind that Marissa is a grade-A sleuth who happens to have a knack for catching cheaters. The main objective: catch her boyfriend in the act of cheating. But who is the subject? None other than a new-to-her-high-school boy named TJ, who just happens to be a guy after Marissa's own heart as they share several things in common, including a major passion. And that's when things really get interesting because the subject of her investigation may be the same person Marissa is falling for in the end. But can he be trusted? This book took some major twists and turns and it's hard to divulge too much as the subtle mystery throughout adds to the drama and the excitement. In the end, I was happy about the outcome and unfolding that occurred along the way, and despite it all, I'm elated that strong female friendships are still making its way, front and center, into YA fiction. Charlie was my second favorite character in this story. As always, happy reading!
etoile1996 More than 1 year ago
marisa has boundless curiosity coupled with a strong sense of moral outrage. when she catches her best friend's boyfriend kissing another girl she gets the evidence and shares the info. when her former bff/frenemy kendall hears about this, she decides to recruit marisa into spying on her boyfriend tj. even though most people in marisa's life are against her reconnecting with kendall, marisa also has a lot of empathy and is willing to give people second chances even if they aren't deserved. one of my favorite things about busted, is that even as you know that marisa isn't working with the full story, you get where she is coming from. so when she makes mistakes and misjudges situations you can't help but forgive her because it all comes from a good place. she is so darn likable. as marisa gets mixed up with kendall, tj and templeton school politics, she realizes that there is way more going on beneath the surface. and as she works everything out, she finds herself falling for the one guy she shouldn't, but who is also possibly her perfect match. this story was funny and sweet and fast-paced and surprising. i loved the little bit of mystery and drama, it added something more to the relationships, both the friendships and the romances. **busted published on january 2, 2018. i received an advance reader copy courtesy of netgalley/sourcebooks fire in exchange for my honest review.
ahyperboliclife More than 1 year ago
Busted was a fun read. It was cutesy, dramatic, and so easy to read. I was initially drawn into the story because of the PI situation the protagonist, Marisa, finds herself in. And I ended up liking all the spying, scheming, and the tangled web of secrets that starts to come unraveled in a natural way through the story. I really liked Marisa’s jewelry making hobby - it’s something I’ve dabbled in myself and a unique hobby we don’t normally see in YA. But there was also a lot of pettiness and immaturity that kept me from really loving the book. Characters were called on their actions, and others apologized for theirs - and I really liked that a lot, but the blatant immaturity and selfishness was a little much. Overall, this was a fun read and was the perfect inbetween book for me to read between 2 SFF stories. I received a copy of the book from Sourcebooks Fire via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.
Lauren817 More than 1 year ago
I've been dying to read Gina Ciocca's Busted ever since I first saw the Veronica Mars comparison. Veronica Mars is one of my favorite TV shows so any book that could potentially life up to that level of awesomeness is a book I need in my possession. Plus sleuthing in general is just a instant-sell for me. I'll never be a detective, or even a pseudo-detictive like Marisa, so I have to live vicariously. The Result? I liked Busted, but I didn't love it. Maybe I had too high of expectations, but I was left wanting more. I liked Marisa. She was driven, sweet, and a good friend. Seriously, most friends would never go as far as to to climb the lattice of a house to catch a potentially cheating boyfriend in the act. She's someone you'd want on your side for sure! Additionally, I appreciated that she was always willing to give people a second chance. There's no way I would've taken someone like Kendall under my wing again, but Marisa always tried to see the good in everyone, no matter how hard it may have been. I also liked Charlie, Marisa's best friend, and TJ, Kendall's boyfriend and Marisa's potential love interest. I feel as if Charlie was always the one to bring Marisa back to Earth. She's the kind of friend who tells you that you need to calm down and/or take a break. However, I wasn't always fond of the way Marisa called Charlie out for saying inappropriate things. Don't get me wrong I'm all for people speaking up when something isn't right - Charlie did say some things that pushed the limit to the extreme - but I felt like it was done in an incredibly awkward manner. It gave an after-school special feel rather than a casual one. TJ was super sweet. I especially loved when Marisa brought out his nerdy side. Marisa and him also had decent chemistry. I wasn't always fond of the way they came about - Marisa investigating him for Kendall - but I did like them together. For the most part I enjoyed the plot. Busted contains two large mysteries - what TJ's up too as well as a cheating scandal involving Charlie. I'm all for the dramatics, but sometimes I felt that the TJ mystery was just a tad bit too much for me. Kendall often made a mountain out of a molehill when it came to him, growing suspicious about almost everything he did, and honestly, I feel as if you have that little of trust in your boyfriend, you shouldn't be with him. I will admit, however, that it was important for the overall picture so I could see why Gina made it the way it was. I really liked the cheating scandal mystery though. It provided some interesting twists and turns, and while I figured out a solid chunk of it before the big reveal, there were still some surprising details thrown in. My big wish? I wanted more sleuthing. Given the Veronica Mars comparison and the excitement of the opening scene, I expected a decent amount of cases and spying. Other than the two main mysteries, there was one other case that Marisa worked on, and it was mostly underwhelming. Despite my issues, I still recommended Busted to readers who like mystery, romance, and some pretty large twists. I also look forward to reading more by Gina.
onemused More than 1 year ago
"Busted" is a really fun YA detective fiction. Marisa is a budding journalist and high schooler who is hoping to get into a great college (although they are often expensive). When she is out and sees her BFF's canceled date buying ice cream her BFF (Charlie) would hate, she follows him and catches him making out with another girl. As the story gets around, a former friend, Kendall, asks for her help to figure out what her boyfriend is up to. Thus begins the tale of Busted. The comparison to Veronica Mars felt particularly apt, as Marisa doesn't just tail potential cheaters, but she also is investigating a cheating scandal at Charlie's school to clear Charlie's name. Things spiral out of control as the investigations and mysteries heat up- and the book becomes impossible to put down. The high school drama (with relationships, budding friendships, etc.) is also top-notch in this book, and I found it all delightful. This was a delicious read that I absolutely devoured quickly- I could definitely see this becoming a must-watch TV series and/or movie. The characters were all so fun and mostly easy to like (Charlie and Marisa's brother were stand-out side characters), and I really hope this book gets a sequel or two. I'd love to follow more of Marisa's investigations! Overall, this was a delightful and fast-paced detective-style novel with plenty of drama and clues/steps to keep the reader guessing the whole way through. I absolutely recommend it to any fans of Veronica Mars and YA fiction! Please note that I received an ARC from the publisher through netgalley. All opinions are my own.