Summary (from Goodreads):
“There was something about Ellie… Something dangerous. Charismatic. Broken. Jake looked out for her. Sarah followed her lead. And Jess kept her distance, and kept watch.
Now Ellie’s dead, and Jake, Sarah, and Jess are left to pick up the pieces. All they have are 34 clues she left behind. 34 strips of paper hidden in a box beneath her bed. 34 secrets of a brief and painful life.
Jake, Sarah, and Jess all feel responsible for what happened to Ellie, and all three have secrets of their own. As they begin to confront the darkest truths about themselves, they will also find out what Ellie herself had been hiding all along…”
I wanted to read this book both because of its premise and because of the comparison to 13 Reasons Why. That book is one of my favorites, even though it’s incredibly wrenching to read. This book ultimately fell short. I never felt like I really got to know Ellie and so I never really felt sorry that she was dead (beyond the obvious fact that it’s always sad when someone dies, especially so young).
Also (and Kathy mentioned this in her review, too) I felt that the characters kept us at a distance. That may not bother some readers but it kept me from really connecting with any of them.
Even so, I read this book very quickly. I don’t want this review to be interpreted as me not liking the book. I didn’t love it, but it tackles some very heavy issues and is definitely something that should be read (especially if you know teenage girls).