So I want to tell you how I came across Deadly Little Secret by Laurie Faria Stolarz. I was on my way to meet Jennifer Lynn Barnes in London at her book launch and my friend Sarah and I had some time to kill so of course, we went book shopping. We went to Waterstones in Piccadilly which I found out is the biggest book store in Europe (WOOT!). Besides the already huge amount of YA books, I was incredibly impressed to see a small collection of books that had been imported from America (it’s quality over quantity, right?!). I saw some fabulous books from the likes of Simone Elkeles and Jennifer Echols and I came across this little book called Deadly Little Lies. I read the back cover (as I always do) and thought “oooh, this sounds interesting” even though I’d never heard of the author before. I had however heard of her other books as I found out later.
Anyway, so I hadn’t meant to start a new book so soon (especially as I was already in the middle of reading another one) but I had nothing to read on the train so I pulled this one and began to read. It’s quite a quick read at 252 pages or at least it seemed like it was and so I was finished in no time. And no I didn’t finish it during the train journey, in case you’re wondering ;)
Deadly Little Secret centres around sixteen year old Camelia’s seemingly ordinary life which is rocked to its core when mysterious new guy Ben arrives at her high school. A rumour is going around school that Ben killed his ex girlfriend and he is immediately cast out of all social circles and ignored/avoided by others. All except Camelia that is. She is inexplicably drawn to him and something weird happens when they touch. Camelia doesn’t believe the rumours, much to the dismay of her friends but then she starts receiving threatening phone calls and mysterious packages with weird little notes. Ben insists that he can protect her but from whom? Is Ben really all he seems to be? What is he hiding?
I really enjoyed this book, especially the fact that the book was actually quite contemporary although there is a supernatural aspect to it. I particularly enjoyed the connection between Ben and Camelia and how she didn’t judge him when others already had. I liked the way Ben handled the constant criticisms and how Camelia defended him and became his advocate on many occasions.
One thing in the book that I thought was really clever was the handwritten notes that are interspersed between chapters. At first, the notes are really sweet and suggestive of Ben writing some kind of diary about Camelia. And then the notes start sounding increasingly sinister which leads you to the most obvious question... Who’s writing the notes? There are a lot of potential culprits though and the book reminded me a bit of a “whodunit” novel although no one had done anything yet and Ben was furiously trying to protect Camelia although he was also a suspect himself.
I have to admit to hating the ending which I found very “emo” and let’s just say that it reminded me of a certain film in the twilight saga. Thankfully though, I’m pleased to say that, that’s not the end of the story and there are more books in the “touch” series. I really enjoyed this book actually, so much so that when I’d finished, I immediately got online and ordered the second book “Deadly Little Lies”. I understand the third book “Deadly Little Games” has also just been released but I’ll have to wait a little longer for that one as I need the paperback to match the rest of the collection. THEY HAVE TO MATCH! That’s the rules!
Deadly Little Secret is an excitingly good read that acts like a “whodunit” at times which only serves to heighten the mystery and add to the entertainment value. This book should come with a warning though, it WILL leave you wanting more.
Deadly Little Secret was published in 2008 with the paperback being released in 2009. The second and third books in the series, Deadly Little Lies and Deadly Little Games were published in 2010. To find out more about Laurie Faria Stolarz and her books, visit her website here.