Published: Nov. 11, 2015
Publisher: Full Fathom Five Digital
From the moment Laura Rivers steps foot into Englewood High, she notices the stares—and they aren’t the typical once-overs every pretty new girl endures. The students seem confused and…spooked. Whispers echoing through the halls confirm that something is seriously off. “That new girl looks just like her,” they say.
It turns out Laura has a doppelgänger, and it isn’t just anyone—it’s Sarah Castro-Tanner, the girl who killed herself by jumping into the Navasink River one year ago.
Laura is determined not to let the gossip ruin her chances of making a fresh start. Thanks to her charming personality and California tan, she catches the eye of Englewood’s undisputed golden boy, Charlie Sanders, and it’s only a matter of time before they make their relationship official.
But something is making Charlie and his friends paranoid—and Laura soon discovers it has to do with Sarah Castro-Tanner.
What really happened to Sarah? Why is Charlie unraveling? And how does Laura Rivers fit into it all?
After all, she’s the dead ringer for a dead girl.
I received an eGalley of Dead Ringer from NetGalley for reviewing purposes. This was a truly astounding, mind blowing read! There were so many twists and turns and I was kept guessing what would happen next through the entire book. Dead Ringer definitely has the shock quality of Gone Girl, though it’s in a high school setting and therefore a little more PG. I haven’t been so shocked by an ending since I read Gone Girl actually. I really need to find some more books that are similar because now I’m craving them!
Let me explain some of the premise. Laura Rivers has just moved to New Jersey from sunny SoCal and she is trying to open a new chapter in her life, but there are whispers and stares on her first day at Englewood High School. She looks disturbingly similar to a girl that committed suicide two years prior. This sets of alarm bells for several people- the ones who saw Sarah right before her death and the ones watching internet for any mention of Sarah or the events on that cold December night.
The storyline seems familiar and straightforward for probably the first quarter of the book, but quickly evolves into something altogether different. There were so many points where I was basically shouting about what just happened or what secret just slipped out. Let’s just say that I was heavily invested in the storyline and characters. I kind of crazy ranted to anyone who would listen after I finished because I was left dangling off the proverbial cliff barely hanging on!! I initially thought it was a single book, but IT’S A SERIES!!! AH!!
There was so much awesome about Dead Ringer, but it’s not a 5 Star read so let me explain. While the plot/storyline is definitely 5 stars, the dialogue isn’t. At times the conversation between characters was somewhat strange, like, people wouldn’t actually speak to one another like that or use those phrases. I can’t recall specifics, but I remember thinking that teenagers don’t use stiff phrasing or speak so formally. There were also some small discrepancies in the storyline based on information previously provided. The characters are seniors in high school, which would make them 17-18 years old, but the characters are said to be sixteen several times. Also, Sarah was said to have had a crush on Charlie Sanders since second grade, but Charlie didn’t move to that school until middle school. These don’t really make an impact on the storyline, but I did notice them, so they’re not exactly insignificant.
Overall, I absolutely recommend this book because its such a cool read! Buy it and support a small publisher AND have a knock-your-socks-off new book!