Review: Don’t Look Back by Jennifer Armentrout

Posted May 19, 2014 in Review / 10 Comments

don't look backDon’t Look Back
By Jennifer Armentrout
Published April 15th, 2014
Disney-Hyperion
369 pages
Young Adult | Contemporary | Mystery
Source: received from Baker & Taylor (Thank You!!)
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About the book:

 

Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend, Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all-popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend.

 

Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it’s one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took “mean girl” to a whole new level, and it’s clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Sam is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She’s getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she’s falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her-even if the old Sam treated him like trash.

 

But Cassie is still missing, and the facts about what happened to her that night isn’t just buried deep inside of Sam’s memory-someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of that fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive?

 

I’m a huge fan of Jennifer Armentrout’s writing.  I love the conversational style to her writing, her characters, and the way she writes her romance.  So of course I squeeled a wee bit out loud when the physical ARC of Don’t Look Back was sent to us at the library from Baker and Taylor (our materials distributor).  *Snag*

It seems like Ms. Armentrout is all over the place with her writing.  One minute she’s writing new adult romance, the next she’s writing young adult paranormal, and then she writes a scorching hot adult romance.  So I was super curious what was up her sleeve with a mystery, “young adult style”.  I don’t read very many mysteries but I think I really want to now… thanks to Ms. Armentrout!

First thing that drew me to this story was the premise: Samantha (Sam) is found wandering on road with no memory of who she is.  She is covered in dirt, her clothes are torn, and her fingernails are bloody and ripped to shreds.  Immediately I had to know what happened to her.  Add in the fact that she was last seen with her best friend Cassie and Cassie is no where to be found and instantly we have a “who done it?”.  Written from Sam’s point of view, I was completely consumed by all the aspects of what Sam was going through.  From the basics of NOT knowing what kind of ice cream she liked to the big details like being clueless to how she feels about her boyfriend.  On top of all that she can’t let go of the guilt gnawing her about Cassie.  Could. Not. Put. Down.

Ms. Armentrout is a fantastic writer so I don’t even need to bother with more than a comment on the execution of her story: flawless.  I really thought this was a well paced story.  I was guessing and changing my mind on who did it several times up until the last few pages of the story.  Ultimately it was my first choice of who did it that ended up being correct.  Call me kooky but I took off a half a star for that 😛

The best part of this book is that I feel very confident recommending this book to teens in our library looking for a mystery.  Because honestly, there aren’t too many mysteries out there anymore for older teens.  And we just can’t seem to keep our Patterson books from being stolen…

 

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Jennifer ArmentroutAbout the author:

# 1 NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki.

Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her book Obsidian has been optioned for a major motion picture and her Covenant Series has been optioned for TV.

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Kristin

About Kristin

Kristin has to ensure she gets her minimal requirement of "happily ever after" books in between those books that contain cliffhangers and never-ending story arcs. It's for her family's sake. When not reading, she's homeshooling her 10-year old son, watching cartoons on TV, or taking a nap.

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10 responses to “Review: Don’t Look Back by Jennifer Armentrout

    • K

      Yeah, I think the “meh” cover kind of turns people off but that’s a shame b/c the cover is totally in line with the story and it IS Jennifer Armentrout 🙂 SOOOOO glad you like it too!!!!!!!

    • K

      It’s a pretty quick read and there is some skimming you could do so it could be a good summer read 🙂

      *shakes head back and forth* NOOOOOOO I don’t skim parts of books….. 😀

    • K

      Hmmmm, let me check with my bud at work. If she doesn’t want to read it next, I’ve still got the ARC here. I could send it to you – we really have very few people reading ARCs in library. I’ll let you know. We ordered it so she can always read it when it comes in 😉

    • K

      You might want to give her a second chance if it was the story and not the style of her writing. I personally love her tight, conversation-type writing; completely first person. I’m a fan of her NA series so I could be biased, though…