Book Review: Please Don't Tell

Please Don't Tell
By: Laura Tims
Published by: HarperCollins
Release date: May 24, 2016
Genre: YA suspense
352 pages
Source: galley kindly provided by publisher

If someone asks you to please not tell, 9 times out of 10, you really should tell. This book does as good a job as I’ve ever seen in novel form of explaining why.

The book also does a really good job of illustrating why alcohol is dangerous, why obsessively controlling diet and exercise is unhealthy, and why it’s important to figure out who you are and get comfortable with that, rather than trying to be who you are in the context of someone else. The author throws in a couple of genuine creeps as well. Cautionary tales abound here; there are several teens who are genuinely a mess, and when their messes intersect, things get very, very bad.

There are also some wonderfully brave, loyal, and talented characters. Sorting out the messes from the gems is difficult for Joy, probably because she’s not sure which she is herself. Sorting them out for the reader is quite the tangled mess, and will keep you pulling through the pages until the whole thing is finally unraveled.

One of my favorite aspects of this book is that in the end, characters with mental health issues receive treatment, and are not treated as the butt of a joke. I can’t thank you enough, dear author, for putting this positive message in the hands of kids. Especially in a format that they will willingly read: a page-turning thriller that will keep them on their toes to the very end.

I will be looking for a copy of this one to put in my office to loan out to kids. It’s high interest, and carries such subtle positive messages. Parents who are looking for a book to read and discuss with their teens should absolutely pick this one up. If twisty suspense is your thing, grab a copy.

Joy killed Adam Gordon—at least, that’s what she thinks. The night of the party is hazy at best. But she knows what Adam did to her twin sister, Grace, and she knows he had to pay for it.

What Joy doesn’t expect is that someone else saw what happened. And one night a note is shoved through her open window, threatening Joy that all will be revealed. Now the anonymous blackmailer starts using Joy to expose the secrets of their placid hometown. And as the demands escalate, Joy must somehow uncover the blackmailer’s identity before Joy is forced to make a terrible choice.

In this darkly compelling narrative, debut author Laura Tims explores the complicated relationship between two sisters, and what one will do for the other. It’s a story that will keep readers turning pages and questioning their own sense of right and wrong.