Rosebush by Michele Jaffe

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Rosebush by Michele Jaffe

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Category: Teens
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Catherine Bakes
Reviewed by Catherine Bakes
Summary: Jane is hit by a car and left for dead in a rosebush. While lying in hospital, temporarily paralysed she runs through her memories of the night. But, her friends' stories of what happened aren't making sense. The only thing that is making sense is that it was one of her friends that ran her over, and left her for dead. One of them is still after her.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 336 Date: March 2011
Publisher: Atom
ISBN: 978-1907410383

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Firstly, I've got to say this book was incredibly hard to put down. The plot is so absorbing I found myself trying to read a page at every opportunity I got. I was late for work on a few occasions because I couldn't pull myself away. This is one of the best books I have read in the last few months.

The book opens with Jane lying in hospital staring at a photograph of herself lying unconscious in a rose bush after being hit by a car. She's trying to piece together what happened that night, and figure out which one of her friends tried to kill her. But, being the popular girl that Jane is, she's got a lot of friends to choose from.

Was it her boyfriend David, who's aggressive, possessive and tends to manipulate her into believing everything is her fault? It could be Ollie, David's best friend: creepy, cold hearted and rude. Then there's Langley and Kate, her two best friends, the 'mean girls' of the school – could they have it in them to try and kill her? What about Nicky? She's David's ex, victim of vicious rumours that drove him away - she has a motive. With the killer sending her presents and phoning her she's got to figure out who it is before they try again.

Her controlling politician mother doesn't believe her, putting it down to paranoia. The doctors think that she's delusional and the phone calls are all part of her brain trying to remember what happened, and filling in the blanks. It's only Pete, the adorable hospital volunteer and Scott, her Photography partner that believe her. But, someone is really trying to kill her, and they are getting ready to finish her off.

This book is fantastic. I really can't explain how good it is. The characters are vivid, believable and very well written. I found myself taking a liking to each of the boys (David, Ollie, Pete and Scott) at different stages in the book. I have to say that I really did love Scott as a character and so was a little torn by the end of the book, but you'll have to read it to find out why! Jane is a lovable, and I really felt for her – I got frustrated for her with the paralysis and her loss of memories.

The plot consistently dodges backwards and forwards and keeps placing the 'killer' label over different characters' heads, so until the ending you can't guess who it is, which is very clever and down to a competent writer. I have been blown away by this book – incredible, everyone must read this.

I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to The Bookbag.

Further reading suggestion: If you like this book try reading Black Rabbit Summer by Kevin Brooks or Looking for JJ by Anne Cassidy.

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