Saturday, 22 October 2016

The Amateurs (The Amateurs #1) by Sara Shepard

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Bonnier Publishing and NetGalley.
The Amateurs
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Everyone's dying to know the truth . . .

When Aerin Kelly was eleven, she idolised her seventeen-year-old sister, Helena, and they did everything together. They made Claymation movies and posted them to YouTube. They made fun of Windmere-Carruthers, the private school they attended, they invented new flavours for their parents' organic ice cream shop, and they dressed up their golden retriever, Buster. But when Helena went into senior year things started to change. Rather than being Aerin's inseparable sister, she started to push her away. Then, on a snowy winter's day, Helena vanished.

Four years later, Helena's body is found. Wracked with grief and refusing to give up on her sister, Aerin spends months trying to figure out what exactly happened to Helena and who killed her. But the police have no leads. A young, familiar officer named Thomas wants to help and suggests she checks out a website called Case Not Closed. Hesitantly, she posts, and when teenagers Seneca and Maddox show up on her doorstep offering to help investigate she accepts in desperation. Both have suffered their own losses and also posted to the site with no luck, so they are hoping this case might be the one they crack. But as their investigation begins, it seems that maybe it's no accident that they are all together, and that maybe the crimes have something - or someone - in common.

The Amateurs by Sara Shepard

My rating: 3.25 of 5 stars

The Amateurs “She was never going to know the truth about Helena. What happened to her sister was going to remain a mystery – and a recurring nightmare – for the rest of her life.”

This was a YA mystery/crime story featuring a bunch of teens trying to solve a cold case.

The characters in this were all okay, although I didn’t really love any of them. Seneca was fairly smart, but easily offended, Maddy was a big surprise, Bret was a little obsessed with Aerin, and Aerin liked to flirt a lot. They did all seem invested in solving the case to an extent though.

The storyline in this was about Seneca, Maddy, Bret and Aerin coming together to try and solve the mystery of Aerin’s sister’s murder 5 years previously, after meeting on an online cold case site. They followed some leads, put together clues that the police had missed, and even developed ridiculous schemes to gain access to fancy parties where they could try to interrogate people. The whole thing just fell a little flat for me though, and none of the suspects really seemed all that likely to have committed the crime.

The ending to this gave us a big twist and really did make these guys look like amateurs. It will be interesting to see what happens in the next book.

6.5 out of 10