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Friday, May 23, 2014

Buzz Kill by Beth Fantaskey

Title: Buzz Kill
Author: Beth Fantaskey
ISBN: 9780547393100
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers
Released: May 06, 2014
Page #: 360
Source: ARC from the publisher


"When seventeen-year-old Millie Ostermeyer makes a list of all the people who would want the football team's notorious Coach Killdare dead, she never dreams someone would actually murder him. As if one mystery weren't enough for this Nancy Drew-obsessed school reporter to solve, enter the divinely gorgeous Chase Albright, star quarterback. Who is this mysterious jock who speaks excellent French and likes obscure foreign films? And why is he giving geeky Millie the time of day when the supermodel-pretty cheerleader Vivienne Fitch is clearly throwing herself at him? Mystery and romance collide in this fun, witty murder mystery."
First Lines: (Quote from the galley - see final version for edits)
"Head football coach 'Hollerin' Hank' Killdare was having such a massive meltdown that even from where I was standing in the Booster Club's concession stand, I could see his trademark blue vein popping in his neck and the usual flecks of spittle flying out of his mouth."
Page 1
Senior Year. Murder. Drama. Love. Nancy Drew Addict. Quirky (read: AWESOME) Librarian. What's not to love?!
Millie is a successful reporter for her school's newspaper. She's won awards and is ready to take on the world! But after stumbling upon the body of their notorious football coach, her world is turned upside down. The detective on the case is a joke and she has to be sure her father isn't blamed for this. So Millie sets out to solve the murder... only to find herself paired up with Chase - a quarterback with a mysterious past. She learns a lot about herself and the people around her, but not before she falls hard for the jock.
I love stories like this. It's a well-put-together mystery that really keeps you guessing about the ending. There are a few mini-mysteries along the way that are pretty easy to figure out, but that just keeps things fun. The author did a great job unfolding the story in a way that keeps you on your toes.
The humor in this story was amazing. I mean, it's not LOL hilarious... it's witty and snarky and wonderful. That alone made me love Millie and wish that I was her librarian. She's got everything figured out in the world, so she isn't exactly welcoming of too much change. But she sure knows how to solve a problem: Research. And interviews. And being an overall great journalist. Not without some help from her favorite librarian. Can I just mention that I'm a HUGE sucker for a quirky librarian beloved by the characters?! Makes me think my profession is doing something right. :)
Relationships are always crazy, but I think the one between Millie and Chase is pretty authentic. They both come into things with baggage and become really good friends to each other. There is an understanding about how they are really just trying to solve the murder case and that they each have complementing strengths to do just that. Not to mention Chase's love of artsy films and the French language. Their own quirks are pretty awesome and it's fun to watch them clash at every turn. I think Millie's love of the late coach's dog is probably the most hilarious...
Anyway, I really dug this story and I'll definitely be passing it along to teens who love mysteries. I'm excited to have another good one to put in that pile. I've read other things by this author, but this was definitely my favorite.
Other Blog Reviews:
We clearly need to get more people reading this book... :)

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