This post contains a review and bookish manicure.
No One Else Can Have You by Kathleen Hale
Published January 7, 2014 by Harper Teen
Source: the publisher via Netgalley
Rating: 4 stars
From the blurb: Small towns are nothing if not friendly. Friendship, Wisconsin (population:
689688) is no different. Around here, everyone wears a smile. And no one ever locks their doors. Until, that is, high school sweetheart Ruth Fried is found murdered. Strung up like a scarecrow in the middle of a cornfield.
Unfortunately, Friendship’s police are more adept at looking for lost pets than catching killers. So Ruth’s best friend, Kippy Bushman, armed with only her tenacious Midwestern spirit and Ruth’s secret diary (which Ruth’s mother had asked her to read in order to redact any, you know, sex parts), sets out to find the murderer. But in a quiet town like Friendship—where no one is a suspect—anyone could be the killer.
No One Else Can Have You is Kathleen Hale’s debut novel set in Friendship, Wisconsin. Sixteen year old Kippy Bushman is no stranger to death; she’s lost her mother, her neighbour’s parents, and now her best friend, eighteen year old Ruth Fried. Ruth was recently found gruesomely murdered in the corn fields bordering the back of Kippy's house. When Ruth’s boyfriend is arrested she and Ruth’s older brother, Davey, take up the case.
On starting this book, I was immediately caught up in the mystery of Ruth’s death and I enjoyed Kippy’s funny, odd narration. I felt for Kippy, she has a dad who over-analyses everything – he’s a psychologist, yet she can’t really talk to him, and is now left with only one friend, Ralph, which leaves her quite lonely.
The mystery was well done, and I didn’t spend much time trying to figure out who was the murderer, instead I enjoyed following Kippy around town while she played detective, content to wait for her to figure it out.
Before I started this book I was aware of the variations in ratings being given to it by readers and was curious about what was in store for me. Now that I’ve read it, I can understand why some people might not like it, but for me it worked well : the murders were gruesome, but the descriptions weren’t too graphic and while some of it felt a little unrealistic, at the same time it was entertaining.
No One Else Can Have You is a story that grabbed me from the beginning and had me hooked until the very end. If you enjoy quirky teens and murder mysteries, give this a go.
Thank you to Harper Teen for my review copy via Edelweiss.
I shared my manicure to match early last month, so I'll only include one photo in this post:
You can check out more photos here.