Review: Dead Ringer by Jessie Rosen

Dead Ringer
From the moment Laura Rivers steps foot into Englewood High, she notices the stares—and they aren’t the typical once-overs every pretty new girl endures. The students seem confused and…spooked. Whispers echoing through the halls confirm that something is seriously off. “That new girl looks just like her,” they say.

It turns out Laura has a doppelgänger, and it isn't just anyone—it's Sarah Castro-Tanner, the girl who killed herself by jumping into the Navasink River one year ago.

Laura is determined not to let the gossip ruin her chances of making a fresh start. Thanks to her charming personality and California tan, she catches the eye of Englewood’s undisputed golden boy, Charlie Sanders, and it’s only a matter of time before they make their relationship official.

But something is making Charlie and his friends paranoid—and Laura soon discovers it has to do with Sarah Castro-Tanner.

What really happened to Sarah? Why is Charlie unraveling? And how does Laura Rivers fit into it all?

After all, she’s the dead ringer for a dead girl.

No... No... No!

Do you know what I hate? When a book is set up really well, and I'm getting really invested into the plot, then all of a sudden this big twist that the whole narrative has been leading up to hits and it completely blows everything that I have started to enjoy about the story out of the water and I'm left staring at the left over pieces of a story that could have been so much more.

When I first started Dead Ringer I struggled, I felt that the writing style was overly simplistic and I struggled to be absorbed into the storytelling. Still, I persevered, because that blurb promised me brilliant things so I wanted to see where it was going. We meet Laura, a relateable girl who moves to a new school and meets the most popular guy in town - the only thing is that she sort of looks like someone who died two years ago. I say sort of because even some of the characters say that Laura only slightly resembles Sarah (dead girl), so by this point I'm getting a bit interested but also not getting connected.

Then the proper story begins, and we realise that Laura's new boyfriend and his best buds had something to do with Sarah's death, and somebody knows... 

So the story starts to get interesting, then Rosen throws in this totally crazy twist that is supposed to be unexpected and really shock you into reading more but all it did was made me roll my eyes and sigh because it suddenly created hundreds of massive plot holes. After that, the book was ruined, the story became completely out there and not at all enjoyable and I was just waiting for the climax to happen  so that it was over... then it ends on a crappy cliffhanger and I was not a happy Jade!

This book had so much potential - and Rosen as a writer for YA readers does too, if she learns to show and not tell all the time - but it was just such a let down. If the twist had been something semi-believable that had me reeling, I would have really enjoyed this book... but it wasn't, so I didn't, and that is all I can say.

Book released 11th November 2015 by Full Fathom FiveBook received from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review

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