Monday, May 19, 2014 21:17

Review 262. Sarah Strohmeyer – The secrets of Lily Graves.

18635076Title: The secrets of Lily Graves.
Author: Sarah Strohmeyer.
Pages: 304.
Published: May 13th 2014 by Balzer + Bray.
Sort: Stand-alone.
Growing up in a house of female morticians, Lily Graves knows all about buried secrets. She knows that perfect senior-class president Erin Donohue isn’t what she seems. She knows why Erin’s ex-boyfriend, hot football player Matt Houser, broke up with her. And she also knows that, even though she says she and Matt are just friends, there is something brewing between them—something Erin definitely did not like. But secrets, even ones that are long buried, have a way of returning to haunt their keeper. So when Erin is found dead the day after attacking Lily in a jealous rage, Lily's and Matt’s safe little lives, and the lives of everyone in their town of Potsdam, begin to unravel. And their relationship—which grew from innocent after-school tutoring sessions to late-night clandestine rendezvous—makes them both suspects. As her world crumbles around her, Lily must figure out the difference between truth and deception, genuine love and a web of lies. And she must do it quickly, before the killer claims another victim.
Rating:

I was looking for a little more tension in this book. Based on the blurb, I was expecting a killer on the loose, but it was a murder ‘with reason’ and there is hardly any action. I did like the solution for the mystery, but was also underwhelmed by it. I guess I was just this disappointed, because I loved Smart girls get what they want.

Lily is working on the graveyard when she is attacked by Erin. She is accused of stealing Erin’s boyfriend, Matt, who is a good friend of her. When Erin is found dead in her tub the next day, suicide, people gossip that it’s Lily’s fault. That is until Lily finds out that the police think she has been killed. Lily hopes to clean her Matt’s name when the police points them out as main suspects.

I never felt connected to Lily, Matt or the romance. Erin was a raving lunatic and the only characters I really liked were the secondary family members – who play little roles in the story. I think the author tried to make Lily a bit goofy. She dresses ‘strange’, she grew up in a moratorium where her family works and all the things she does are supposed to be different, but it felt a little forced to me. I was shown how Lily was, instead of  feeling. I also didn’t like how she went behind her mothers back by meeting Matt in secret. It was great that she believed in him, but based on evidence I would’ve stayed away from him.

The mystery was never very engaging to me. I could care less whether they found the murderer, because I never felt any tension. Based on the blurb I thought there might be more victims or at least a treat, but nothing happens. I also thought it was strange how a teenage girl is capable of finding more information than the police. It was also far too convenient how Lily finds out that Erin is murdered. I hope it’s not something that happens in real life; because her mother’s boyfriend (who is part of the investigation) mailed her mother some inside secret information?

This is actually all I have to say about the book. It’s disappointing.

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Mel@thedailyprophecy

Mel is a microbiology technician who is obsessed with Disney, fairytale retellings and fantasy. If she's not reading or blogging, she's either busy with gaming, hanging out with family or watching a TV show. She loves summer and bright nail polish. One of her dreams is to travel the world. She has found her Prince Charming and they are together for 7+ years.

29 comments:

  1. I'm sorry you didn't enjoy this one. I read a review yesterday I think saying they liked it. When I go into mysteries I'm always hoping for a lot of action so I don't know if it would be for me. I'm definitely on the fence with this one.

    Janina @ Synchronized Reading

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  2. Yeah, one of the downfalls of mystery books are when the teenager finds out a lot more information on an investigation than the police themselves, with a few exceptions (like when the police don't believe that a suspect is telling the truth).
    I'm sorry this book disappointed you Mel. I've been eyeing this one because I LOVE the cover, but will definitely lower my expectations when I read it.

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    1. Oh yes, the cover trapped me too. It's pretty.

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  3. Aw bummer, this one had an interesting premise. But yeah, it sounds like a dud. Great review!

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  4. Aw man, I had been expecting this one to be really intriguing based on the blurb! It's been quite a while since I've been truly engaged by a mystery so it's a bummer that this is yet another one that would fail to engage me. Thanks for the honest review, Mel!

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  5. :( I've seen some not so positive reviews of this and it's sad because the concept sounds so good! But it's definitely the kind of book that would thrive on tension, and without it, it flounders. And goodness I hate when it's so obvious that authors are trying hard to make their characters come off a certain way. I've got a copy of this, and will likely read it in the hopes of liking it better, but will tamper my expectations. Great review, though, Mel! :D

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    1. I hope that you end up loving it :D because there are definitely people out there who rated this book higher than I did!

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  6. There's nothing worse than a failed attempt to create a quirky character. When done well, it's great, but when it fails, it just seems ridiculous.
    I had a bad feeling about this book so I chose not to download. I'm glad I'm not missing out.

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  7. Aw. I'm so sorry you had so many issues with this book sweetie. I do like that cover. But you didn't like the mystery? That sucks. I love a good mystery, lol. Amazing review Mel. <3

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  8. Aww I am so sad to see that you didn't like this one, Mel! :( I did enjoy this but I did have some of the same issues you had.

    Great review, Mel!! :)
    Rashika @ The Social Potato

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  9. Your not the first one I've seen disappointed in this book. I actually just purchased Smart Girls Get What They Want on Kindle so I will read that one instead :)

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  10. oh.. sucked that the mystery aspect of this book wasn't that interesting to you :( And no connection with characters is really bad as well.. Thanks for the honest review, Mel! :)
    - Farah @MajiBookshelf

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  11. This one sounds really tacky and one of those trying-too-hard books. I've seen a couple of other negative reviews, so this one's not going on my immediate TBR anytime soon. I'm sorry you didn't like it, Mel! :(

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  12. You're right: this sounds like it would be really intense and filled with action so I'm sorry it turned out not to be. The fact that neither the mystery or the characters managed to draw you in guarantees that this one will stay off my tbr! I hope your next read is/was better :) Lovely review xxxx

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  13. Oh dear... I read the blurb, and it totally hooked me in!! Sorry to hear that this one turned out disappointing :( I do really like your point about how Lily wasn't sufficient as a main character because you were shown how she was instead of being moved to feeling it. With a synopsis that seems to have such drama and tension, that's such a let down.. awww... Very objective review, though, Mel :)

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  14. Aw, boo. This is the second negative review for this one I've read today. I was hesitant about it because of the author's other novels (not that I didn't like them--I haven't even read them--but they're so vastly different), and it seems that hesitation was for good reason. Shame. Thanks for your review!

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  15. I love how your rating says "Nice try." It's so snarky and sounds sarcastic. I laughed. :D

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  16. After reading this author's book How Zoe Made Her Dreams (Mostly) Come True, I was hoping to pick up this one as well but it seems like a lot of people were disappointed with it. I haven't read Smart Girls Get What They Want though. I'll have to check that one out =)

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    1. You should, I thought that Smart girls was so much more enjoyable.

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  17. I gave this a similar rating. I wasn't a huge fan of Lily and the romance was just okay. I feel like the pacing was pretty slow, too :( Thanks for the great, honest review!

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  18. I had a similar reaction to this but I think I enjoyed the mystery just a little bit more than you. The romance didn't inspire. Great honest review. :)

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  19. Lily was useless even if she was the lead, the romance was ineffectually, the murderer was so predictable. I had so much rage after I finished the book, it sounded so intriguing, but the book was so easy to solve and I'm like "WHAAAT?!?!" it really was disappointing. Lovely review!

    www.lite-rate-ture.com

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  20. I'm so sorry you didn't enjoy this one! D:

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  21. This is such a shame! I have been excited about this book since I first read the blurb, but I haven't been reading very positive reviews.
    It's disappointing that Lily's feelings and character were rather a show than a tell. It's always hard to connect with a character when that happens.
    And it also sounds kind of dodgy that she was able to uncover information that the police couldn't :S
    I am still keen on reading it, just to see how I like it.

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