Title: Good Girl, Bad Blood
Author: Holly Jackson
Published: 30th April 2020
Genre: Mystery, Fiction, Young Adult
Number of pages: 432 (paperback)
Start Date: 30th January 2022
Finish Date: 31st January 2022
Pip is not a detective anymore. With the help of Ravi Singh, she released a true-crime podcast about the murder case they solved together last year. The podcast has gone viral, yet Pip insists her investigating days are behind her. But she will have to break that promise when someone she knows goes missing.
Jamie Reynolds has disappeared, on the very same night the town hosted a memorial for the sixth-year anniversary of the deaths of Andie Bell and Sal Singh. The police won't do anything about it. And if they won't look for Jamie then Pip will, uncovering more of her town's dark secrets along the way and this time everyone is listening. But will she find him before it's too late?
Holly Jackson has a razor-sharp focus and immense skill for crafting meticulously plotted, overwhelmingly engaging mysteries. This particular one kept me up. I couldn't sleep until I finished reading to reach that brillant conclusion. The writing in this series is stellar. From an incredible opening line, to a cleverly worked deft summary of the events of the previous book, Jackson instantly drew me back into Pip’s story.
Little Kilton has such a brilliant atmosphere for these types of stories, mixing a classic Christie (Definitely making me want to read some Agatha Christie books) setting with layers and layers of secrets to interrogate how easily mob mentality changes and the importance of reputation.
Pip is an excellent protagonist, snarky, smart and fiercely determined. Here, she battles her own insecurities and the mounting pressure of the public gaze on her every move. I really liked how she is conflicted about returning to the dark, twisted path of investigating and is aware of the potential consequences of her actions. It just makes her feel that much more real, though I could’ve easily picked most of the characters out of my own sixth form.
Holly really just gets how teenagers take and act, never patronising her audience. In terms of the mystery, I love how Holly deftly wraps up each particular mystery in her books, but leaves the door wide enough for another book with tantalising crumbs and of course, an open ending that left me unsettled and on edge, so much that I was straight away reading the last book of this trilogy.
The twists and turns are spectacular and take a seemingly simple story on a much darker, thought-provoking path. The intersection between this mystery and an ongoing part of the original case from the first book comes through the exploration of guilt and revenge.
Holly really plays on these themes across the story, creating a complex and incredibly interesting narrative that doesn’t shy away from intense, dark topics. I felt Pip’s anger and resentment at the system she holds so dear alongside her, as unfortunately so many other people have done so before and continue to do so sadly in today’s society.
Once again this book had me on edge, I highly recommend it for people who want a book they literally cannot walk away from!