How to Fall by Jane Casey

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How to Fall by Jane Casey

Category: Teens
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Jill Murphy
Reviewed by Jill Murphy
Summary: Great YA crime thriller with a cast of interesting characters, especially the female lead. It's tense and compulsive and written with an unerring ear for the teen pysche.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Ye
Pages: 416 Date: January 2013
Publisher: Corgi
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 0552566039

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Freya dies after a fall from a cliff. But was it an accident, suicide, or - horror of horrors - murder?

Jess Tennant can't bear a mystery and so she sets out to solve the mystery of the death of the cousin she never met. She meets with nothing but obstruction and hostility, but perhaps it's little wonder. Not only is Jess a stranger in the parochial town of Port Sentinel, she is also the spitting image of Freya. She unsettles everyone for these reasons but, even despite them, Jess is an unsettling girl. She's blunt, direct, and she never takes no for an answer.

And so Jess argues and provokes her way through the mystery and gradually begins to unpick what happened on the fateful night that ended in a fatal fall from a cliff. But the closer she gets, the more dangerous things become...

I thoroughly enjoyed How to Fall. It's a blend of kitchen sink drama and mystery thriller. Jess isn't simply an amateur sleuth. She's also a girl whose parents have recently split, fracturing her family, who has recently been let down in love, leaving her spiky and untrusting. Freya's death isn't the only secret bedevilling Jess either - her mother is also keeping things from her. So it's no surprise that Jess is abrupt, easily angered and generally quite difficult to get along with. But she's also interesting and original. It's quite a heady mix and it makes her an engaging central character.

Behind the story of what happened to Freya is Jess's story. Over the course of the book she learns a great deal about her own family background and her mother's motives in keeping secrets. She finds out quite a bit about herself, too, and this helps her move forward in her own life.

How to Fall is a genuinely enjoyable read: there's plenty of tension ratcheting up as the truth about Freya comes closer, and there's a central character with backstory every reader will identify with. I put it down with a sigh of satisfaction.

Other super-duper YA thrillers include Wasted by Nicola Morgan and Quarry by Ally Kennen.

Buy How to Fall by Jane Casey at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy How to Fall by Jane Casey at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy How to Fall by Jane Casey at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy How to Fall by Jane Casey at Amazon.com.


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