Friday, June 08, 2012

Review: Deadly Cool by Gemma Halliday

Title: Deadly Cool
Author: Gemma Halliday
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release date: October 11th 2011
Pages: 303
Genre: Contemporary YA; mystery
Source: Bought
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Hartley Grace Featherstone is having a very bad day. First she finds out that her boyfriend is cheating on her with the president of the Herbert Hoover High School Chastity Club. Then he’s pegged as the #1 suspect in a murder. And if that weren’t enough, now he’s depending on Hartley to clear his name.
But as much as Hartley wouldn’t mind seeing him squirm, she knows he’s innocent, and she’s the only one who can help him. Along with her best friend, Sam, and the school’s resident Bad Boy, Chase, Hartley starts investigating on her own. But as the dead bodies begin to pile up, the mystery deepens, the suspects multiply, and Hartley begins to fear that she may be the killer’s next victim.
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Deadly Cool was so much fun! Fun isn't the word that comes to mind when you think murder mystery, but a few bloggers had talked about how hilarious this book is, and they were right! Deadly Cool is the perfect balance between a funny, entertaining read and a solid murder mystery. I loved it!

Hartley is what makes this book work. She is awesome! Her sarcastic sense of humor is hilarious, and the style kept me entertained throughout. I love how realistic her actions are - often, in mysteries, the MC turns into some kind of super-detective once he or she finds a dead body, but Hartley's still a normal girl - she does what she can to find the killer, but she isn't unnaturally fearless or anything like that. She's simply a girl with a wicked sense of humor who somehow got caught up in this mess!

The secondary characters are great, too. I loved Chase - he's adorable! Sam, Hartley's best friend, is a fun character, too - I really enjoyed her creative way of cursing! Sam decided she didn't want to swear anymore, and now has these creative and well, weird expressions she uses instead, which are hilarious. And, of course, Hartley's overprotective mother, whom she calls SMother (genius!) is great.

But even though most of the book is fun and lighthearted, the mystery aspect is great, too. There aren't enough contemporary YA mysteries out there, but those that I've read, I've usually enjoyed. I really liked trying to figure out who the killer is alongside Hartley, and I love all her creative snooping-methods.

There are a few times, though, when logic isn't exactly on the book's side. Josh's stupidity frustrated me - if you're the main suspect in a murder case and the police are looking for you, of course you go hide for a week - that doesn't make you look guilty at all! The characters' unwillingness to cooperate with the police annoyed me a little, but then again, that's the way it usually is in mysteries. I was a little disappointed by the ending - it seemed kind of far-fetched, and the killer's motives did not sound strong enough to be realistic, in my opinion. That didn't take too much from my enjoyment of this novel, though.

Deadly Cool is lighthearted, hilarious and just plain fun, as well as an entertaining, if simple, murder mystery! I loved it, and I can't wait to read about Hartley again in Social Suicide!

What are some of the most entertaining MCs you've read about lately?


  1. I've seen a surge of reviews on this novel and I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that it was .99 for the Kindle...which is why I got it. But I'm loving all the positive reviews....makes me excited to start this one. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Awesome review! I need to read this...

  3. I'm starting this one a couple of books from now. I am very excited because I have heard great things and I am seeing it around a lot lately. It's like a SIGN or something. Thank you for making me want to read it more!

  4. what a good book !! i read gemma's book and i love it...
    so i will buy and read another of gemma halliday's novels ...thx ;)


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