‘This Book Kills’ – Ravena Guron

Scheduled for release in January 2023, thanks to NetGalley for giving me the opportunity to review this early…a debut influenced heavily by A Good Girl’s Guide and the Truly Devious series. Great fun, and definitely one to recommend.

Jess Choudhary is a scholarship student at an elite school. She’s used to feeling on the outskirts of things, but when one of the wealthiest and most popular boys in the school is found dead things get difficult. Though it’s hushed up, his murder was carried out almost word for word like the story Jess and another student wrote for a school assignment. When Jess receives a text thanking her for the inspiration, we know things are about to become difficult.

Impeded by the stipulation that their behaviour is exemplary, neither Jess nor Summer can take the risk of stirring up too much trouble. With a secret society stirring trouble for the ‘poors’, it’s apparent that someone is exploiting the institutional issues for their own gain.

With its dark undertones of institutionalised racism, and the very apparent exploitation of status for personal gain, this gave a rather derivative book a real bite. Jess and her attempts at investigation are well-meaning but rather inept…and she comes to depend on the very people who are so keen to ostracise her just a little too much for my liking.

While this didn’t exactly offer anything new, it is still a great read. I can’t wait to see how it fares when it’s let loose on the world.