Monday, March 21, 2016

Review: The Girl I Used to Be by April Henry

The Girl I Used to BeThe Girl I Used to Be by April Henry
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co
Release Date: May 3rd, 2016
Purchase: Amazon
When Olivia's mother was killed, everyone suspected her father of murder. But his whereabouts remained a mystery. Fast forward fourteen years. New evidence now proves Olivia's father was actually murdered on the same fateful day her mother died. That means there's a killer still at large. It's up to Olivia to uncover who that may be. But can she do that before the killer tracks her down first?

My thoughts:
I'm thinking I need to part ways with Ms. Henry.  This is my third book by her and while I loved the first one I read these past two have really left me feeling meh.  I'm used to "it's not you it's me", but in this case I really kinda think it was the book.

The first chapter was amazing, full of suspense, girl on the run from the killer, and terror.  I liked it and after reading it I was ready for this story, but it all fell apart rather quickly.  It all just felt very convenient.  From Olivia deciding to move into her mother's old house which just recently became available to the whole town opening up about this unsolved case that happened fourteen years ago.  I just didn't buy it.  The way the events happened also just seemed to work in Olivia's favor.  I mean she decides to go to a certain family members funeral but has no idea how she is going to get in because she wants to keep her identity a secret when in walks the elderly neighbor she used to know.  I can't imagine anybody asking a complete stranger to give them a ride to a funeral.  I know certain things were exposed later, but at this time the neighbor still had no idea who Olivia was so that was no reason for her to even ask. 

I also didn't like how Olivia just moved into her old town and started asking questions about her parents and what happened fourteen years ago.  Everybody in town thought she was a stranger so why in the world would they talk to her?  And when did Olivia decide to start looking for the killer? This was never explained all we get to read is her many inner monologues asking herself could it be this person, that person, what motive.  She was not a detective and she didn't have any clue who these people were.  How did she know this person would even still be in the town??  See very convenient.  I think way more ground work needed to be worked in for me to buy a lot of the things that the author was throwing out.  I also kept having to remind myself that Olivia was not an adult, but the way the adults kept treating her and telling her things that really shouldn't have been shared with a teenager it was hard to remember that she was only seventeen. It almost felt like a TV show where everyone gets stuck in their small town and everybody still acts like they are in high school.  It was so bizarre!

I don't know a lot of things didn't add up.  The ending especially didn't work for me.  The actual villain was out of nowhere and didn't make much sense to me.  I get the why's and how's but the author could have gone in a much darker path and it would have made me forget a lot of the things that bothered me. I know she's capable of this because of her previous book, but she just closed everything up with a weird bow that didn't even match her story.

So I am going to part ways with Ms. Henry.  After two disappointing books I can say without a doubt her stories are just not for me.

2 snowflakes...only because I loved Duncan and the way he didn't let Olivia run away from her past.


  1. That's a shame you didn't enjoy this one! Great review though xx

  2. Great review. I have this one on my TBR list, and I'll give it a shot, but based on your review, I don't think I'll like it either. Too weird she just turns up in town and starts asking questions.

    Majanka @ I Heart Reading

    1. I hope you like it better than I did. It was all so weird!!

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