Title: Deadly Cool
Author: Gemma Halliday
Publisher: HarperTeen (October 11, 2011)
Source: ATW ARC Tours
Hartley Grace Featherstone is having a very bad day. First she finds out that her boyfriend is cheating on her with the president of the Herbert Hoover High School Chastity Club. Then he's pegged as the #1 suspect in a murder. And if that weren't enough, now he's depending on Hartley to clear his name. Seriously? Not cool.
But as much as Hartley wouldn't mind seeing him squirm, she knows he's innocent, and she's the only one who can help him. Along with her best friend, Sam, and the school's resident Bad Boy, Chase, Hartley starts investigating on her own. But as the dead bodies begin to pile up, the mystery deepens, the suspects multiply, and Hartley begins to fear that she may be the killer's next victim.
Deadly Cool by Gemma Halliday was different than I expected it to be. Normally, when I think murder mystery, I think dark, creepy, and edgy. While the book covers some dark content (hey, we are talking about teens being murdered here), the overall feel of the book is light, fluffy, and fun. Kind of a cool mix, if you ask me.
Hartley Featherstone is a really fun character. Her thought content is typical for what I'd expect of a teenager, but she's got a strong sarcastic and snarky vibe. She's witty with her thoughts, even if she's not quick enough to be so in conversation. And...she loves putting extra zing into her thoughts using parentheses (and we all know who else likes doing that *smiles*).
Even though Hartley is dealing with some pretty difficult stuff -- murders, cheating boyfriend, way more attention from peers than she ever wanted -- she's able to deal with it through her sense of humor. Love that. Made it very enjoyable to read. I also appreciated that the whole boyfriend-cheating-on-her thing didn't get swept under the rug. Sure, it wasn't a priority to deal with considering everything else going on, but it kept popping up throughout the story, tugging at Hartley's heart-strings. Her conflicted emotions towards her ex were very real and believable.
Overall, Deadly Cool is a quick, enjoyable read. I'd recommend for fans of Ally Carter's Gallagher Girls series and anyone else looking for something entertaining, but not too deep.
Final thoughts: Borrow.