Monday, May 11, 2015

ARC Review: The Last Good Day of the Year

Title: The Last Good Day of the Year
Author: Jessica Warman
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Publication Date: May 19, 2015
Source: Printed ARC from Bloomsbury
A new powerful thriller from the globally-embraced author of Between.

Ten years ago, in the early hours of New Year’s Day, seven-year-old Samantha and her next door neighbor, Remy, watched as a man broke into Sam’s home and took her younger sister, Turtle, from her sleeping bag. Remy and Sam, too afraid to intervene at the time, later identified the man as Sam’s sister Gretchen’s much older ex-boyfriend, Steven, who was sent to prison for Turtle’s murder.

Now, Sam’s shattered family is returning to her childhood home in an effort to heal. As long-buried memories begin to surface, Sam wonders if she and Remy accurately registered everything they saw. The more they re-examine the events of that fateful night, the more questions they discover about what really happened to Turtle.

Master storyteller Jessica Warman keeps readers guessing in this arresting page-turner.

My Review

When I first requested The Last Good Day of the Year by Jessica Warman, I really thought I had no chance for approval. I don't really read thrillers, so why would Bloomsbury take a chance on me with no solid evidence of me reading the genre? Spoiler alert... I don't... well I didn't until now. I was shocked when it showed up in my mailbox, and afraid to give it a chance. You'll soon find out why this book may have been the game changer for me because I absolutely loved it!

While The Last Good Day of the Year gets off to a slow and confusing start, it's hella intense and scary enjoyable. I'm only saying that it's confusing because there are so many characters. There are the obviously important ones, and then there are some ones that are thrown in that just seem misplaced. By the time I was at the end of the book, I understood the inclusion of these characters, and why Warman was keeping me on my toes. OMG. It's just so crazy!

The reader probably shouldn't be enjoying a story about a four-year-old being abducted and most likely murdered, but it's hard not to enjoy. I don't want to compare it to a train wreck, but readers definitely won't be turning their eyes from this one once they start reading. Warman writes with an intensity that draws readers in and makes them crave more. It becomes a need to finish this book and figure out what happened to Turtle that New Year's Eve in 1986.

The book is told with a before and after perspective, and it jumps around a lot. Sometimes Sam is reflecting on what happened in 1986, and other times, it's 1996 when she and her family have moved back to the home where Turtle was taken. There are even a few times when Sam reflects on what happened a few months prior to her move back to Shelocta. You definitely have to piece together the puzzle, but it's worth it when you get to the shocking ending.

Now here's the part where I normally recommend the book to readers of certain books, but I have nothing to go on! So... if you are a fan of thrillers and mysteries, this might be the book you'll want to kick off your recreational summer reading. Trust me... you don't want to miss this that will keep you up at night!

About Jessica Warman

Jessica Warman is the author of Breathless, which received three starred reviews and was an ALA Best Book for Young Adults, and Where the Truth Lies. The idea for Between came from an incident in her childhood, when a local boy went missing after a party on a yacht (he was eventually found, alive).

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  1. I haven't heard of this book and don't usually read thrillers either! But your review is great so I think I'll have to try it!

  2. It's definitely one of those ones that I'm glad I requested because it doesn't read as a super scary book.

    I hope you enjoy it, Michelle! :)

  3. YOU HAVE GIVEN ME HOPE. Well kind of. I mean when I first requested this, I DIDN'T NOTICE THE CREEPY TEDDY BEAR and now I'm just like aw poop I'm gonna be so freaked out by reading this. I have yet to start this, but I will soon seeing that the pub date is coming up next week :P

  4. It's only a little creepy, but not in a sickening way or anything - just freaky. I'm not a big fan of mysteries or thrillers, but it reads more like a mystery to me. I really, really liked it.


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