The Children’s Book Review | May 14, 2018
Written by Maureen Johnson
Age Range: 14 and up
Hardback: 432 pages
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
What to expect: Mystery, boarding school
Boarding school books get a serious twist in this fast-paced, intricately plotted mystery.
Stevie Bell had dreams, just like any teenaged girl. It’s just, her dreams are a little odd – to see a dead body and solve a murder. So when she’s accepted to Ellingham Academy, Stevie begins her mission to solve the decades-old cold case that has made the prestigious boarding school famous. But being a student at an elite boarding school is proving to be a lot deadlier than she anticipated. When one of her classmates is mysteriously killed while working on a documentary about the cold case, Stevie is thrust in to two simultaneous investigations. Told in alternating chapters, two deliciously devious plots twist together until the shocking conclusion.
New York Times bestselling-author Maureen Johnson creates an excitingly atmospheric world of mystery for Stevie. Well-versed in criminal investigations and psychology, Stevie’s character jumps off the page and pulls the reader down her rabbit holes of investigation. Her vulnerability socio-economically, as well as her struggle with anxiety, make her truly empathetic and many teens might find a mirror in Stevie’s struggles and triumphs. A funny character with a quick tongue, Stevie is sure to resonate with teens.
Readers of boarding school dramas will adore this exciting romp through privilege (both contemporary and historical). And since it’s two mysteries at once, it will keep you guessing until the end – no easy solutions or obvious red herrings here! But will we learn the truth behind the murders in book one of this three-book series? You’ll have to dig in to find out! This is a grade-A mystery that will leave fans salivating for the next installment.
About The Author
Maureen Johnson is the bestselling author of several novels, including 13 Little Blue Envelopes, the Truly Devious series, the Suite Scarlett series, and the Shades of London series. She has also written collaborative works such as Let It Snowwith John Green and Lauren Myracle and The Bane Chronicles with Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan. Maureen lives in New York and online on Twitter @maureenjohnson or at www.maureenjohnsonbooks.com.
Truly Devious, written by Maureen Johnson, was reviewed by Denise Mealy. Discover more books like Truly Devious by following along with our reviews and articles tagged with Boarding School Books, Detective Books, Girl Detectives, Law & Crime, Maureen Johnson, Mysteries and Young Adult Fiction.