Tuesday, December 30, 2014

ARC Review: When You Leave by Monica Ropal

My rating: 4 / 5 stars
Original language:  English
Series: -
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery, Crime, Romance
Published: April 7th 2015 by Running Press Kids
Pages: 336 (paperback)
Source: I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

Cass is positive that the people she cares about most will eventually leave her. Her father is gone, her mother doesn’t notice Cass exists, and her best friend’s battle with cancer was too close of a call. So when she begins her year at a wealthy new private school, Cass’s plan is to suffer through it in anonymity.

However, when her cute locker neighbor, Cooper, shows an undeniable attraction toward Cass, keeping him at a safe distance isn’t easy. Even though her Frogtown skater world and his do-gooder preppy one are so different, Cass and Cooper somehow mesh. And once Cass lets her guard down, Cooper is mysteriously murdered—thus proving her original theory.

When Cass’s close friend is suspected as the killer, she isn’t sure who she can trust anymore. Between investigating Cooper’s murder and trying to understand what she really meant to him, will Cass even find what she is looking for?
(source: Goodreads)
My Thoughts

This is the first ARC I have ever received so therefore I was pretty excited (That might be the understatement of the year). I immediately started reading it and the excitement was kind of gone. The beginning annoyed me - It was like skaters were Martians. I can assure you, they're not. I'm a skater myself (Even though no one will ever get me to do flips or any other tricks) and my whole class accepts it (Well, they kind of ignore it) because it's just a hobby. Not a lifestyle or a mentality. 
But the writing style was really good, a bit halting, but that improves throughout the book, so I continued reading. I read a few reviews of this book and some people said that the writing style was too direct for them but I can't agree with the 'too direct'. I love direct writing and this was very direct but in a good way. It felt like someone telling you their story, like a real person's point of view. The main character / author thought of a lot of great words, for example the "incognito escape route".

And ignoring the skater aspect the book got really great. Her relationship with Cooper was a bit sudden and out of nowhere but the way they behaved was realistic (excluding Cass's need to sneek around, I don't really get that). Something I also couldn't understand was the whole thing with the private school. We don't have many private schools in Germany and I only know one Person going to a private school. We have two types of public schools, but to get to the one that's more difficult, you just have to have good grades, not a lot of money. There are rich and poor people on both schools. 

But the book wasn't what I expected: I expected it to be more about Cass's insecurities, mostly because of the blurb. I sure did not expect it to be a mystery story or to be about murder. Before you label me stupid: I did not read the whole blurb. Only the first sentence. So everything that other people read in the blurb was a complete surprise to me, which I think is really good, because that were kind of big points in the plot.

The characters in this book were original, especially Mattie and Brady. Mattie was definitely my favorite character, not only of this book but in general. I haven't read a book with a character like him in a long time and I have never read a book with a mute person. And Brady... Well, I definitely didn't like him, he's scary and annoying but he was... unusual.

Should you read this book? Hell, yeah, you should! I already recommended it to some of my friends, babbling on and on about how awesome Mattie is (Let's call it a bookish crush, okay?) and I will buy it in a paperback edition when it's out myself. To rerererereread it. You can never have enough cute, compelling mystery stories.

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