Title: You’re Next by Kylie Schachte
Pages: 464 Pages
Publisher: Jimmy Patterson Presents
Published: July 7th, 2020
Trigger Warnings: Queer character death at the beginning (not a spoiler, in the synopsis), violence, domestic abuse.
“Flora, I need your help. Come fast.”
A queer thriller from James Patterson Presents? Oh hell yeah, you bet your ass I grabbed this one as fast as I could! You’re Next was a YA female detective story done right. Did I mention it was queer?
This book really just jumps right into it, our main protagonist, Flora, gets a frantic phone call from her ex-girlfriend, Ava, saying she needs help and to come right away. Unfortunately, Flora gets there only in time to see Ava shot and doesn’t see who did it. Before Ava dies, tells Flora a name that she doesn’t know and thus begins the hunt for who killed Ava. It doesn’t take long for Flora to realize that she is mixed up in something that is much bigger than she could have ever realized and she begins to get death threats towards her, her family and her friends. The deeper she goes, the more dangerous it becomes.
The characters in this one were great, I felt they were developed well and I loved the main character. She made all kinds of mistakes and was really selfish at times, but she did seem to get it when she screwed up badly. Love the family dynamics in this one, her grandfather is ex-CIA and fairly supportive of her investigation lifestyle and it was just interesting watching that relationship get twisted around as Flora was getting into more dangerous situations. I adored her best friend, she is completely friend goals and I love seeing strong female friendships, yes Flora wasn’t always a great friend back but I still loved it.
The mystery was so good in this one. Even has stuff got crazier, it actually all kept adding up. I hate when mysteries have plot holes all through them and I didn’t feel like this one did at all. The pace is mostly quite fast and pulls you in, despite how long it is. There are twists and turns all through it and more conspiracies than I can count. You do have to suspend belief a bit because these teens are like 16 and there is just no way, but other than that – it’s really well done I think.
Yes, this book is a little long – clocking in at over 450 pages. It probably could’ve been shortened. There is a lot of backstory in this one, it almost could’ve had a book before this book – there is just so much backstory. We learn a lot about how and why Flora got into investigation in the first place and her history with several various characters, including her family. It’s just a lot at times. I do think the author is a really excellent writer though, so I can’t say I was bored by it.
I’m hoping we get another thriller/mystery from this author next year too. It’s really hard finding solid genres recommendations in YA and I think Kylie will be an author to look out for in the future. I would definitely recommend picking up this one, it would be the perfect fall or spooky October read.