Book Review: Betrayal
By: Gregg Olsen
Published By: Splinter
Publication Date: September 4, 2012
Page Count: 288
Audience: Young Adult - Thriller/Mystery
Source: ARC Provided by The Readiacs for Blog Tour
The Ryan twins are back and the body count in Port Gamble is rising. When Olivia Grant, a British exchange student, is killed at a Halloween party, the entire town is once again thrown into a period of paranoia and mourning. Hayley and Taylor are convinced they can find Olivia's killer, but things start to get out of control as they learn more about their special gift and family secrets.
I really love this series. The first book was great, but this one was even better in my opinion. I loved that this time around we not only got an intriguing mystery to solve, but readers also get the chance to learn more about the Ryan twins. There were so many questions I had after book one - particularly about the girls' powers and the bus accident from their youth - that are addressed in this installment.
Another thing I enjoy about this series is the setting. Port Gamble is one of my favorite places and I was fortunate enough to visit the sleepy hamlet on several occasions during my time as a Washington resident. It is so cool for me to read a series that I can visualize so well. Every time a character takes a walk through the town, I can see it as if I am there. I love being able to put myself into this world. Reading this novel at night though did make for more than a few freak out moments; my imagination got a little too vivid. I have to send props out to Gregg Olsen for crafting such a compelling storyline.
One other thing I love about these books is that Olsen is inspired by real life crimes and events. He alters them to fit the Ryan twins' Port Gamble, but if you know the case you can see little glimpses of it shine through the fiction. I have started doing a little research on the inspiration cases before starting the book. It was interesting for me to see which elements came from the case and which elements were crafted from Olsen's imagination. My one complaint about the plot of this one is that I figured out the killer and twist a little too early for my liking; that didn't keep me from enjoying this novel - but it would have been nice to have to work for it a bit more.
I love these characters and this town. If you don't mind a little gore, love a good mystery thriller, and have a soft spot for the Pacific Northwest - this series is a must read. Olsen also manages to infuse each novel with poignant and relevant topics for modern youth. I love the inclusion of technology and pop culture.
One Last Gripe: I did find it odd that the twins didn't mention Moira until halfway through this book considering how book one ended. It seemed to me that something like that would have been a lingering thought from page one.
My Favorite Thing About This Book: The setting and the way that Olsen uses it to add a creep factor to the plot
First Sentence: Olivia Grant was exactly sure what she'd expected America to be like, but Port Gamble, Washington most certainly wasn't it.
Favorite Character: Hayley - I am not sure why this twin appeals to me the most
Least Favorite Character: Brianna - her self centered nature really irked me
In this action-packed thriller sequel to Envy, foreign exchange student Olivia Grant is stabbed to death after a party--and the prime suspect is her best friend. As twins Hayley and Taylor Ryan get pulled into the aftermath of this Amanda Knox-like crime, they realize nothing is what it seems. Could it be betrayal of the ultimate kind?
Betrayal features real-life crime-solving techniques, heart-stopping suspense, plenty of red herrings, hard-hitting ethical questions, and information about the Amanda Knox case that inspired the novel. As the crime unravels, so does the twins' past…and they must face off against a family member who may unexpectedly have carried out the worst betrayal of all.