Sixteen-year-old Julia Whitmire appeared to have everything: a famous father, a luxurious Manhattan town house, a coveted spot at the elite Casden prep school. When she is found dead in her bathtub, a handwritten suicide note left on her bed, her parents insist that their daughter would never take her own life.
But Julia’s enviable world was more complicated than it seemed. The pressure to excel at Casden was enormous. Abuse of prescription antidepressants and ADHD medication ran rampant among students; an unlabeled bottle of pills in Julia’s purse suggests she had succumbed to the trend. And a search of Julia’s computer reveals that in the days leading up to her death she was engaged in a dangerous game of cyberbullying against an unlikely victim.
NYPD detective Ellie Hatcher is convinced the case is a suicide, but she knows from personal experience that a loving family can be the last to accept the truth. When the Whitmires use their power to force a criminal investigation, Ellie’s resistance causes trouble for her both at work and in her personal life. As she is pressured to pursue a case she doesn’t believe in, she is pulled into Julia’s inner circle–an eclectic mix of overly precocious teenagers from Manhattan’s most privileged families as well as street kids from Greenwich Village. But when the target of Julia’s harassment continues to receive death threats, Ellie is forced to acknowledge that Julia may have learned the hard way that some secrets should never be told.
Received for Audio Review
Overall Rating: 4.25
Story Rating: 4.50
Character Rating: 4.00
Audio Rating: 4.00 (Not part of the overall rating)
First Thought when Finished: This is the 2nd Alafair Burke novel that I have read and I can now officially say that I am a fan girl! Never Tell hit all my thriller buttons!
What I Loved: This was one case that ended up going in several different directions before finally getting solved! Ellie and Rogan are probably one of my favorite detective duos. I love that they are not romantically involved and have a pretty good friendship. That basically means they can be real with each other. In this case, Rogan had to get real with Ellie and tell her she was getting in her own way. The methodical way that the case played out after that was brilliant. It kept me guessing almost to the very end!
What I Liked: I really liked the side characters of Casey and Ramona. I thought that playing out a case with teenagers involved was going to be annoying but these characters were written/portrayed at exactly where they would be in this stage in their life. Casey was specifically compelling and his story played out in a way that was satisfying.
What mad me go huh?: I was kind of surprised at how quick the timeline moved. I wouldn’t have noticed other than it was mentioned a few times.
Audio Review: The Audio was narrated by Eliza Foss and ran 10 hrs and 54 mins. I thought Eliza did a pretty good job with the pacing, accentuation, and characters. It only took a bit to warm up to her voice but by chapter 3 I was really enjoying the book. I will say that if you listen to the disk version that the music is a little annoying at the end of each disk. Also, the repeating of the last few lines from the disk before was unnecessary but that is not on the narrator. Overall this was a pretty good audio production.
Final Thought: Alafair Burke is slowly becoming one of my favorite mystery/thriller writers.