Blood on My Hands (Wish You Were Dead Trilogy (Hardback))

Gr 8 Up—Callie's friend tells her that their mutual friend Katherine is missing from the party and suggests that Callie check behind the ball field. Callie arrives on the scene only to find Katherine's body lying in a pool of blood. She leans down and picks up the knife, realizing that she is now covered in blood, too. Just then, all of the kids from the party pour onto the scene and begin snapping cell phone photos of Callie holding the knife, standing over the corpse. Her brother has had his own brush with the law and is currently in prison so Callie runs and masterfully employs amazing disguises and subterfuge to outwit local law enforcement. The balance of the novel is spent jumping back and forth in time as Callie uncovers the events and motives that could possibly reveal the real culprit. The jumps in sequence are at times confusing, and the end is a little unsatisfying. It relies on a thinly developed lesbian subplot to create character motive: weak at best. Nonetheless, author recognition, the teen love of mystery, and a stellar cover will no doubt make this a well-circulating title.—Leah Krippner, Harlem High School, Machesney Park, IL
Callie is found kneeling beside the body of her classmate and holding a knife. Afraid she'll be charged with murder, Callie takes off, hoping she can figure out who the killer is before she's caught. A mean-girl backstory is implausibly sordid, but the smoothly unfolding mystery has all the elements of a good whodunit, including an ending that's satisfyingly unexpected.

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