Zoe Made Me Read It

Zoe Made Me Read It 1

Zoe Made Me Read It 1

Dangerous Girls

by Abigail Haas

Genre: YA Mystery, YA Thriller
Published: July 16th, 2013
by Simon and Schuster




It's Spring Break of senior year. Anna, her boyfriend Tate, her best friend Elise, and a few other close friends are off to a debaucherous trip to Aruba that promises to be the time of their lives. But when Elise is found brutally murdered, Anna finds herself trapped in a country not her own, fighting against vile and contemptuous accusations.

As Anna sets out to find her friend's killer, she discovers hard truths about her friendships, the slippery nature of truth, and the ache of young love.

As she awaits the judge's decree, it becomes clear that everyone around her thinks she is not just guilty, but dangerous. When the truth comes out, it is more shocking than one could ever imagine...


Welcome to Zoe Made Me Read It, your soon to be favorite part of this blog. Because let’s be real- there’s nothing like making your friends read the books you love. Even when they give them 2.5 stars on Goodreads. I’m looking at you, Zoe.

My name is Katie, and my game is to review the books that Zoe makes me read. Hahaha. The title makes so much sense now, doesn’t it? I’m basically a genius.

Zoe recently recommended me Dangerous Girls, fangirling like there was no tomorrow. “But Katie, it’s almost as good as Percy Jackson! Almost.” That’s a direct quote from Zoe herself. Or vaguely direct. I don’t know. It’s hard when you don’t have a great memory LIKE ZOE’S. Sorry Zoe. Love you. But I knew that if it was up there in Zoe’s book heaven where the Percy Jackson books are gods, then it was interesting enough for me to try.

At a first glance, Dangerous Girls is a stereotype wasteland. Elise, the bad girl. Tate, the picture perfect jock boyfriend. Chelsea, the pot-smoking artist, and her pot-smoking twin brother Max (runs in the family apparently). Mel, the good girl who doesn’t know what the heck she’s doing with her crazy friends. And our main character, poor poor Anna. The only girl who isn’t rich enough, and therefore is a scapegoat for all the nefarious deeds done in Aruba. Stuck on an island, accused of murdering her best friend. What, you say. How are all of these people even possibly in the same book? Isn’t it a stereotypical mess?

Well, I don’t know how she did it, but somehow Abigail Haas managed to make it all work. I know. I know. I was overwhelmed too. Haas’ writing makes the story somehow believable in an unbelievable type of way (if you know what I mean). I know that Zoe said it was something like the Amanda Knox trial. And that’s exactly what it was. It was like those true stories you see on the news but they can’t possibly be real because they’re so far-fetched. Yet they are. That’s Dangerous Girls. It’s the tabloid section of the Internet in a book, telling the accused’s story. People Magazine sometimes does segments like that. Their side of the story.

Anna was our main character. Through our many flashbacks to before the murder and the days leading up to it, we were able to get Anna’s point of view on everything, but not in a straightforward way. The retelling of the murder was just like Anna – twisted and confusing. Anna is this character who you can just tell is damaged, inside and out. Anna is possibly the worst and the best narrator you could have. Her retelling is constantly shifting, the story told in pieces and fragments that make it that much harder to figure out. But the story fits Anna, this lonely girl stuck on a island, manipulating everyone’s feelings, including yours (you can try to pretend she doesn’t affect you, but she does. SHE DOES).

And let’s talk about Elise. She’s a rebel in every way, someone who lived how she wanted to and didn’t care what anyone else thought. She and Anna were inseparable. Best friends. But their friendship was tainted by their lives. Their world was such that the innocence of friendship was twisted into something that wasn’t anything worth having at all. They were toxic together, but alone apart. And when Elise was killed, Anna was alone. Anna is so dependent on Elise, her best friend, and without her Anna is such a lonely character. Without Elise, Anna was a piece, not a whole. They needed each other to keep each other up, but with each other turned against everything. It was such an interesting dynamic throughout the book as you realized that this was no ordinary friendship. It shrouded every word with a hint of unsteadiness, a touch of doubt placed in your mind as you realized that there were so many layers to Anna and Elise. Their friendship (compared to the rather lackluster and slightly underdeveloped friend group) was the only well developed relationship in the story.

This mystery was one of the best I’ve read. Full of suspense and intrigue at every turn. Haas writes an amazing story that compels you to read on. Honestly, it completely makes up for the weird cover. Kidding. Kidding. The cover isn’t that bad.

5/5. This was undeniably a good book. I loved it. Whatever, Zoe. You win this time. So you made me read it. But I loved it. So… I win.

31 thoughts on “Zoe Made Me Read It 1

    1. It’s a really great book to read when it’s nice and sunny outside and you aren’t reading it in the dark. Don’t read this book in the dark.

  1. HAHAHA. YESH, this book was a magnitutde of awesomeness and procured from me these random bursts of “WOAH”. Haas has a GIFT, I tell you. She’s made this entire dynamic work so well! And I love this feature, Katie! Its hilarious, and you’re right, I shall be on the lookout for more such nefarious reviews…because Zo’s recommendations are always the best 😛 (not that I would know or anything…)

    1. Aww! Thank you! I created this feature myself and forced Zoe to put it in. But it was okay. Because she made me read one of her favorite books (I think. The only blatant favorite Zoe has is Percy Jackson).

    1. Yes! You should totally read this! If you love mystery you’ll definitely love this! It’s not your super typical and obviously cheesy mystery.

  2. I’m pretty sure Zoe actually made me read this too, she’s a book pimp that one. But it sounded so incredible and I couldn’t help myself and I’m so glad I picked it up. Couldn’t agree more, it sounded like a cliche but the way it all blended together was incredible and even reminded me of the Amanda Knox case as well, bit of art imitating art which heightened the storyline even more so. I love this feature ladies and so glad you enjoyed this too Katie, wonderful review <3

  3. So glad you liked it! Ahaha I’d say you’re definitely both winners in this case. The murder/mystery aspect sounds super exciting to me, but I’m not really a fan of those kind of tabloid sections of the internet, you feel? I love myself a thrilling read, but sometimes if it gets too far-fetched then it’s a no-thank-you. I’m glad the author made it work for you though! I’ll be keeping my eyes out on this. 🙂

    1. I feel you! This book is really good- it isn’t too far fetched (well, not that far fetched, considering that these parents let their children vacation themselves in Aruba) and it definitely isn’t overdone. It’s kind of like Gossip Girl as a mystery (have you seen that show?). But in a good way. Not that Gossip Girl is bad. I love Gossip Girl.

  4. Yesss Zoe and I absolutely LOVED Dangerous Girls and I recommend it to everyone as well! I’m glad you loved the book as much as we did, great review Katie! I lol’d because it’s definitely not comparable to Percy Jackson lol

  5. I love this idea! And I am glad you enjoyed Dangerous Girls too. I felt the same way when I started, like “What is this? I don’t like these people, go away!” but then I could not put it down! It reminded me quite a bit of the Natalee Holloway case mixed with the Amanda Knox thing- but then with its own twist of course! Can’t wait to see what Zoe cooks up for you to read next. Lovely review, Katie!!

  6. This is such a wonderful idea! I have heard incredible things about Dangerous Girls and “almost as good as Percy Jackson”? Now THAT’S really freaking good, huh? I love mysteries and I think I will have to give this one a read! Thanks for the review–it was lovely! ♥

  7. YESS!
    I loved this book so much and I’m glad that it got some love from you too. Zoe clearly has amazing tastes! I 100% agree with you on the mystery being one of the bests out there. One minute I thought I knew what was going on and the next I was gasping out loud! I want more books like this in YA!
    Fantastic review, Katie!

  8. This sounds so good! I’ve heard so many good things, so now I’ll definitely have to read it. It sounds right up my alley… honestly, I don’t know why I haven’t picked it up sooner! Great review, Katie – I’ll have to get to this one soon 🙂

    Denise | The Bibliolater

  9. I’ve heard lots of good things about this book! I haven’t gotten around to reading it yet. I don’t read a lot of contemporary (or I guess I should say things that are not fantasy/scifi/dystopian), but this is extra appealing since it’s a mystery/thriller! I’m so glad you liked it 🙂

  10. I love the idea of this! I’m still trying to get one of my blogger friends to read My Sister’s Keeper. It’s wonderful that she was able to recommend a book to you that you loved!

  11. Hahahha I find it hilarious that Zoe made you read this, BUT GOOD FOR HER.

    BUT YES FOR LOVING THIS. The ending blew me away when I read this. And you are totally right, for some reason, all of this just worked together. Now you have to go back and look at all the subtle hints 🙂

  12. Fun feature – nothing better than forcing books on friends and having them fall in love with it. I read Dangerous Girls earlier this year and really enjoyed it. I didn’t love it because the book slump I was in prevented that from happening, but it hooked me, which is the best thing your in a slump, I say! The ending? My head exploded. Well played, Haas

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