Penelope's Reviews > Deadly Cool

Deadly Cool by Gemma Halliday
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Dec 19, 11

bookshelves: published-2011, reviewed-books
Read in December, 2011, read count: 1

2.5 stars.

Deadly Cool had a great start, opening with a catchy first paragraph:
There are three things you never want to find in your boyfriend's locker: a sweaty jockstrap, a D minus on last week's history test, and an empty condom wrapper.
Lucky me, I'd hit the trifecta.

-Hartley, Deadly Cool by Gemma Halliday (Pg. 1)


In case you're wondering, Hartley is a virgin. This discovery sets off a chain of events that lead Hartley to the find the body of a classmate in her boyfriend's room, and then on to searching for the real murderer once she decides that her now ex-boyfriend is innocent.

As I got deeper into the story I found it hard to connect with Hartley, and that had a lot to do with the fact that--had I been in her situation--I would have acted completely differently. Hartley is way too gullible, and it gets her into some dangerous situations. She has moments of enlightenment when she puts puzzle pieces together like a boss, and gets closer to solving the mystery...and then has moments of pure idiocy that had me rolling my eyes and shaking my head. Is calling her selectively clueless, too presumptuous? No? Okay.

One thing that really bugged me is that while questioning the students at her high school, Hartley would think rude things about them that quickly got old: that they would cry, but it wasn't a mascara-smearing cry (and therefore wasn't real, so that person didn't really care about their dead classmate), or that someone would make a sobbing noise, but their tears wouldn't even make it to the corner of their eyes (and therefore weren't real). We hear these things so many times, and about all the people Hartley questions, that I began to question why Hartley herself wasn't crying in a mascara-smearing way--did that mean she didn't care either? Did that mean she was being fake, too?

On the positive side, the story is faced-paced. Though it lacks a lot of the mystery it could have had, it is a very light read that doesn't take itself too seriously. Hartley does deserve credit for taking initiative in finding the truth behind something that everyone else thinks is an open-and-close case. She's got guts, that's for sure. And she even goes out on a limb for her ex-boyfriend, even though he cheated on her. Kudos! The humor is great, and totally had me laughing. It's an easy mystery to solve (pretty much everything happens exactly how you think it will), but I was still entertained enough to breeze through the book.

I've been going back and forth on the rating for this one, so I decided to settle in the middle.

Read this if:
...you want a quick read, or a quick break from the paranormal.

Content Warning
*This section may contain some spoilers about content!*
(view spoiler)



This review was originally published on my blog: The Reading Fever.

I was provided with a tour copy of this book by MMSI Book Tours, in exchange for an honest review.
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Lissa (new)

Lissa Maybe they were wearing waterproof mascara! I've cried a lot wearing that and it never smears.


Penelope Hahaha, I doesn't! I've even swam with it on, and that stuff doesn't budge.


Courtney Vail waterproof = Good point!


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