Friday, June 13, 2014

Review: My Last Kiss by Bethany Neal

My Last KissTitle: My Last Kiss 
Author: Bethany Neal

Publisher: Farrar, Strauss, and Giroux
Publishing Date:  June 10th 2014
Pages: 358
Genre:  YA Mystery Thriller/Supernatural

Series:  Stand Alone
Source: ARC


What if your last kiss was with the wrong boy? 

Cassidy Haines remembers her first kiss vividly. It was on the old covered bridge the summer before her freshman year with her boyfriend of three years, Ethan Keys. But her last kiss--the one she shared with someone at her seventeenth birthday party the night she died--is a blur. Cassidy is trapped in the living world, not only mourning the loss of her human body, but left with the grim suspicion that her untimely death wasn't a suicide as everyone assumes. She can't remember anything from the weeks leading up to her birthday and she's worried that she may have betrayed her boyfriend. 

If Cassidy is to uncover the truth about that fateful night and make amends with the only boy she'll ever love, she must face her past and all the decisions she made--good and bad--that led to her last kiss.

Bethany Neal's suspenseful debut novel is about the power of first love and the haunting lies that threaten to tear it apart.

I was a bit cautious with this book. I liked the way it sounded but I wasn't so sure how the execution of the story would turn out, it turned out really well. I very much enjoyed this book. I was pretty much sucked in from the very beginning and I just couldn't put the book down. The mystery of whodunit really kept me reading. 

Cassidy only kissed one boy her entire life, or so that is what she remembers when she first wakes up dead. As her afterlife starts to reveal memories of her death, she starts to remember the life she was living. It seems that there was another kiss, one that was not with her boyfriend, one that led to her death. Every  one things she killed herself. Fought with her boyfriend then jumped off the bridge. Cassidy knows this is not true. She knows that she didn't kill herself but she can't remember what exactly happened. She wants to solve the mystery of her death but there seems to be one issue. No one sees her or hears her... well except for one. Her boyfriend. She will need his help if she wants to learn the truth of her last night alive, but he is hiding something, something that just might be very important. He isn't the only one either. Her best friend is hiding something too. It seems there are many secrets floating around about the night Cassidy died and she has to unravel all them all whether she wants to or not. 

I was really into this book. It was a breath of fresh air with all my OK or not so OK reads lately. I was so happy to finally be sucked into a great read. The story is focused around the mystery of Cassidy's death and Cassidy's relationships. A bit of realistic fiction, a bit of romance, a bit of drama, and a whole lotta mystery. Just the way I like my books. It was a great mystery too. I was struggling to discover the truth, I kept changing my mind. The author was great at deterring my thoughts from one suspect to the other. In the end, yes it was a bit obvious but only in the end. The mystery really was what kept me turning the pages so fast. The mystery of Cassidy's death, her break up/fight with her boyfriend, her cheating, her friends. There was so much that was a mystery at the beginning and each page unraveled a bit more and started peicing Cassidy's life together for me. 

There was a bit of romance too. It wasn't overdone and it wasn't so far in the background where it became lost. It was just right. Even though the romance between Cassidy and her boyfriend, Ethan, was over before it stated in the book, it was still pretty nice. The flashbacks and the memories built the romance and the present affirmed it. It was slow but steady. 

The characters were alright. I liked them but didn't love them....except for Ethan. He was a pretty cool and steady character. The only one I never suspected. He really loved Cassidy more than she deserved when the story started. As their love story unfolded, I could see why his love for her was so strong. For so long they were happy and committed. Ethan forgave easily and he loved hard. I really liked him. 

Cassidy was a bit hard to connect to but I did connect enough to like her and dislike her. She made some pretty stupid and selfish decisions, however she earned my forgiveness in the end. She grew on me and I really liked her in the end. 

The rest of the characters were secondary and not very memorable. They were all suspects at one time or another and so I never grew attached to any of them. Just in case.

I really did enjoy this book. It was written very well, easy to read, easy to get into, easy to turn that very last page with a smile. It was exciting, thrilling, a little tear jerking, and just a good solid read.

I really liked it. a top read for the month for me. I recommend it for those that like a light mystery that isn't to creepy, realistic fiction, and bit of romance. 

Bethany Neal

Bethany Neal writes young-adult novels with a little dark side and a lot of kissing from her Ann Arbor, Michigan home. She is obsessed with (but not limited to): nail polish, ginormous rings, pigs, pickles, and dessert. 

You can find her locked in her Writertorium for insane amounts of time. But, hey, insanity is fun! My Last Kiss is her first novel.

1 comment:

  1. A very nice review. Interesting how you liked and disliked a character, and in the end, came to forgive her for her bad choices.


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