Title: Prep School Confidential [#1]
Author: Kara Taylor
Publication Date: July 30, 2013
In this breathtaking debut that reads like Gossip Girl crossed with Twin Peaks, a Queen Bee at a blue-blooded New England prep school stumbles into a murder mystery.
Anne Dowling practically runs her exclusive academy on New York’s Upper East Side—that is, until she accidentally burns part of it down and gets sent to a prestigious boarding school outside of Boston. Determined to make it back to New York, Anne could care less about making friends at the preppy Wheatley School. That is, until her roommate Isabella’s body is found in the woods behind the school.
When everyone else is oddly silent, Anne becomes determined to uncover the truth no matter how many rules she has to break to do it. With the help of Isabella’s twin brother Anthony, and a cute classmate named Brent, Anne discovers that Isabella wasn’t quite the innocent nerdy girl she pretended to be. But someone will do anything to stop Anne’s snooping in this fast-paced, unputdownable read—even if it means framing her for Isabella’s murder.
Mystery books are far and few these days, especially with all the paranormal/dystopian/fairy-tale filled novels being published by the truckload. Before I started the book, I was a little wary of the idea of a mystery novels. They haven’t panned out for me for a while, and I REALLY didn’t want this one to fall flat.
FORTUNATELY, I loved this book. I couldn’t put it down! (I’m serious, I stayed up ’til 4am finishing it. It was SO worth it)
Admittedly, I didn’t like Anne, the main character, at the beginning. She seemed extremely shallow, spoiled, and like those rich kids who think they can get away with anything (which she often did). But then, as she settles into her new boarding school in Boston, we get to see a lot of depth in her character as she tried to find out who killed her roommate. I love that Anne slowly reveals her inner badass as she breaks all the rules to figure out this mystery. Although vaguely similar to Miss Blair Waldorf, from Gossip Girl, Anne is missing that superiority complex that Blair drowned herself in. I really liked Anne due to her immense confidence and refusal to be deterred.
As all mysteries should, Taylor incorporated a sense of CREEPY into the book. With hidden tunnels and dark forests, I founds myself with chilling goosebumps every now and again. Taylor also had a large number of characters aside from Anne who kept her on her toes. I found that the variety of characters and their sub-stories led to a fairly large list of suspects and helped shape the story of a girl no one really knew. However, this also created a little confusion on my part when it came to keeping track of everyone…
All in all, I was really impressed with Prep School Confidential! This novel kept me guessing ’til the end and the peek into the next book left me wanting more ~ I can’t wait to see what Kara Taylor cooks up next!
World Buidling: 5/5
GoodReads Rating: 4.13/5
A copy was provided by St. Martin’s Press through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.