cover image You’ll Be the Death of Me

You’ll Be the Death of Me

Karen M. McManus. Delacorte, $19.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-593-17586-6

McManus (The Cousins) once again creates a believable, pulse-pounding thriller, this time told through the alternating perspectives of three teens. Former best friends Ivy Sterling-Shepard, Cal O’Shea-Wallace (both white), and Mateo Wojcik (Puerto Rican and Polish) find themselves at the center of a murder investigation when they ditch school to re-create “the Greatest Day Ever”—the day they first became friends. But the reenactment quickly devolves when they stumble upon the corpse of Brian “Boney” Mahoney at the art studio of Cal’s love interest. Blonde Ivy, embarrassed by her loss of the school election to Boney, quickly becomes a prime suspect when school gossips connect her hair color to that of the murderer. Determined to clear her name, Ivy insists that the trio investigate. But as they follow the clues, the former friends’ secrets are revealed, some about the murder and others tied to their friendship, familial relationships, and misunderstandings that have resulted in long-lasting damage. McManus cleverly crafts a realistic crime story with plausible plot twists and characters who have plenty of depth. While the mystery of why Boney was murdered moves the story along, the relationship between Cal, Ivy, and Mateo will keep readers engaged. Ages 14–up. Agent: Rosemary Stimola, Stimola Literary Studio. (Nov.)