Don’t Look Back by Jennifer Armentrout
Samantha has it all: trendy queen of the school, popular boyfriend, doting parents, popular best friend.
Then her best friend disappears.
Sam wanders back several days later with amnesia, having been with her best friend the night she disappeared, and readers gradually learn that nothing is typical after all (of course.)
Sam fears she is dealing with a killer, who knows she might remember that night anytime. Someone who is now leaving her threatening notes. As part of her “new life,” Sam takes a second look at her popular boyfriend, her former best friend, and a possible love interest, an Hispanic boy, Carson, who lives on their estate.
Her twin brother would like to help, but doesn’t trust the “new” Samantha. Unfortunately, the past reveals that Carson could be the killer; or could it be Sam herself? The list of suspects is very long for the former Queen Bee. Is she remembering or having hallucinations?
While the “do over” possibility could be formulaic, Sam makes the complex transition by a real examination of her life, right down the possibility of being the killer herself.
Although the rich vs poor theme gets old, Sam herself is the perfect flawed heroine. The fact that she has amnesia allows Sam to take a look at her former life and decide where she wants her life to move and who she wants to be and be with. It is a do-over possibility for a flawed heroine who is also very realistic.
Suspense, romance, thrilling ending. Experienced readers will anticipate the ending, but still enjoy the ride. What more do you want from a teen fast read?
One last word: as opposed to standard teen book jackets, this cover is really worth a second look. What do you see?
Ages 12 up.