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Please Don't Tell

3.62  ·  Rating details ·  1,029 ratings  ·  174 reviews
Debut author Laura Tims writes an intense and utterly gripping contemporary YA tale perfect for fans of Pretty Little Liars. Joy has done everything to protect her twin sister...including murder.

Joy killed Adam Gordon for what he did to her sister, Grace. At least, that’s what she thinks happened. Now Adam can’t hurt anyone ever again, and her sister can be free from the b
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published May 24th 2016 by HarperTeen
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Author-ization The overall standard rating is a 3.76, but you honestly can't rely on someone else's opinion to see if you'll like it.
Is this book your cup of tea? Do…more
The overall standard rating is a 3.76, but you honestly can't rely on someone else's opinion to see if you'll like it.
Is this book your cup of tea? Do you like this genre or does the story intrigue you or appeal to your taste? Ask yourself these questions and pick up a copy from the library if you still don't know.
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3.62  · 
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 ·  1,029 ratings  ·  174 reviews

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3.5 stars

People are always turning silence into a knife to stab themselves with.

What if you blacked out at a party and the person you absolutely hated died? You wanted him dead. You’ve definitely thought about ridding the world of him. He deserved it. But could you really have been capable of murder?

This is a dark story revolving around a complex sister relationship and the depths one will go to protect her sister. It is about the fear of not knowing what you are truly capable of.

Joy and Grace a
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.)

“It must have been me. Whether I was sober enough to remember it or not.”

This was a YA story about a set of twins, and a dead guy.

Joy came across as pretty messed up in this story, but she was fiercely loyal to her sister, and it seemed like she really believed that she would go as far as murder to protect her.

The storyline in this was about this guy called Adam dying, a
“Love is a wonderful thing, my dear, but it leaves you wide open for blackmail.”

----Jasper Fforde

Laura Tims, an American author, pens her debut YA thriller, Please Don't Tell that narrates the story of a young teenage girl who after probably killing the boy who destroyed her sister's life becomes a victim of blackmailing from a stranger who knows what she did to that boy and that stranger will go at any lengths to use her for his/her own purpose.


Joy killed Adam Gordon—at least, that
Laurie Flynn
I was lucky enough to get an ARC of this book at ALA Midwinter, where I was even luckier to have the lovely Laura Tims sign it for me. But I had no idea exactly how lucky I was that I had my own copy until I started reading… because I was literally underlining quotes from every single page and dog-earing at random. (Sorry, book!) It’s not an understatement to say I was floored by the writing. It’s bold, gripping, original, evocative, poetic, jarring. It’s light as a lullaby, beautiful as a song, ...more
Mar 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, ya, thriller
This review was done by KissinBlueKaren

Oh no! Please do not believe the Goodreads rating for Please Don’t Tell. It is so good. I practically read it in one sitting.

This story follows twins Grace and Joy. Joy and Grace aren’t really honest with each other anymore since last summer when Grace tried to break out of her shell and ended up getting raped. Grace was raped by Adam last summer. She is the smart twin and is currently having a semester out of school to complete a home-study project. Joy
Kurt Dinan
Feb 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A fast, intense, and honest read. I'm going to suggest that all of my students read this one.
Kira Simion
Jun 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
Who are you when no one's around?

Sometimes it takes a little push to figure things out.

Would you laugh at the same joke with your friend around? Your crush? Your parents?

Would your eyes light up like Christmas lights when you hear the song you lie awake in bed listening to on repeat until you fall asleep humming the melody if you were in public?

Would you say something stupid to be honest to someone in need of a little truth in their world filled with lies?

Would you lie to yourself or others to h
Philip Rogers
Jun 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was lucky enough to get to read an early version, and I loved this book! The characters were interesting and believable, and the twist kept me guessing until the very end. This is a pulse pounding read that I couldn't put down.
Tee loves Kyle Jacobson
Oh my heavens this story had me on the edge of my seat the entire time I was reading it. I actually put it down three times so I would not read it so fast to finish. I really wanted to know the ending but I was so curious about the characters and what happened to them I had to slow down reading because I was on fire!

Joy and Grace are twins. Joy is the protector of Grace who is fragile. Joy was born first and no matter what happens she will always protect her sister. During the summer Joy and Gra
Caleb Roehrig
In PLEASE DON'T TELL, Laura Tims has managed to use an ingeniously twisted plot (a girl is being blackmailed over a murder she may or may not have committed) to explore a much deeper theme: the ties of love and friendship, and the extent to which any individual is responsible for another. (To paraphrase the way I described this book to someone else: come for the murder and blackmail, but stay for the poignant look at family/friendship dynamics!)

Told in alternating points of view - the first bein
Dec 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was so lucky to grab a copy of this at ALAMW and even more lucky to meet Laura Tims and get her to sign it! I knew this was going to be my kind of book and I read it ASAP.

This book is important. It's a rape book. It's a sister book. It's a friendship book.

Read it.

(I also got sent a copy from Harper Collins for review!)

So this book is about two twins dealing with a secret. And blackmail. One twin was rapes and the other one is being blamed for killing a boy. A boy who hurt her sister. A boy sh
3.5 stars

Please Don't Tell was well-written and interesting throughout. It kept me guessing, but I was expecting a huge plot twist that I don't feel ever came. The foreshadowing in the novel is well done and to an experienced reader does not slip through the cracks.

It is obvious that Laura Tims is a young author, which isn't meant to sound like a bad thing. I do, however, see room for improvement. I feel like her later novels are going to be better as she walks through life and gains experiences
Oct 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A wonderful and chilling novel that revolves around complex sibling relationships, as well as different manifestations of guilt and blame.

The structure is a past and present point-of-view shift between Joy and her twin sister Grace, before and after the death of Adam Gordon. Both sisters are at least vaguely unreliable, especially since Joy was drunk the night of Adam's death, and Grace comes across as progressively more and more unbalanced.

This is a book that will anger you, break your heart
Sep 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: beta-read
I read an early draft of this book in January 2014 and feel so lucky. PLEASE DON'T TELL is a twisty fun novel about sisters, secrets, and revenge. It is perfect for fans of Pretty Little Liars and Damage Done by Amanda Panitch.
Paige (Illegal in 3 Countries)
See more of my reviews on The YA Kitten! My copy was an ARC I got as a reviewer for YA Books Central.
Diversity Rating: 4 – This is Our World
4 (Joy’s friend is biracial with a black mother and white father; supporting character Cassius is black and lives with vitiligo; another supporting character is half-Vietnamese)
Disability: 5 (Joy has more than a bit of an alcohol problem; Grace has OCD with magical thinking; November’s time in an asylum offers commentary on how we t
Jan 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing

This book. Oh my goodness. How do I even describe it? I truly don't even know how to put my thoughts into words. The very first page pulled me in. Please Don't Tell is written in alternating POV's by a set of twins- Joy and Grace. From the very beginning, their emotions resonated with me. Their voices, so similar yet different, echoed in my head without stopping. This is a book that you won't be able to ignore. Once you start it, you won't be able to stop, so make sure you plan accordingly

I dig creepiness and complicated sisterly relationships and revenge stories and diversity so unshockingly I dug this one a lot.
This book... was absolutely heartbreaking. I don't know what else to say about it.

"Just because someone's dead doesn't make them gone."

Joy - as the summary of the book shows - thinks she killed Adam Gordon, and she believes that fact because she had plenty of reasons to kill him. The fact that he's dead should calm her, should allow her to think clearly, to get her life back on track knowing he won't be there to ruin it, but none of this happens; instead, it seems like he died only to haunt her,
May 14, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: won
I guess I'm the odd man out on this book. I felt it was too long. There were no twists. The characters were not likable. I had a hard time grasping the difference between Grace and Joy's own voices. I know that they're twins but they sounded the same and I constantly had to re-look at the chapter heading to remind myself the view point I was reading from. November ticked me off because you think you would warn your closest friends from danger. Grace ticked me off because she still lied in her fi ...more
Karen Fortunati
Mar 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Psychological thriller!! Wow, pacing just right as Laura Tims weaves a dark tale of violence and the ties that bind sisters together!! Hooked until the end!
Jul 10, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
"I'm no longer ice. I am fire. Finally Joy and I can burn up at the same time."

Nothing in this book really blew me away or knocked my socks off (okay- so I am not even wearing socks but that's besides the point.) The author had some fantastic writing for someone who debuted this book as their first and I really liked the premise she was going for with the book but by the end of it I was just...meh. It wasn't anything spectacular.

I really loved the complex sister relationship between Joy and Gr
EDITED: I went back to reread a few pages and I got the "blackmail reveal" wrong. Oooohhhhh.

"You slept with my sister."
He winces. "Adam kept telling me to do it...and then she was so...she was really into it, and..."
"Did you sleep with her because she looks like me or she's hotter than me?"
I'm horrible. I have become a horrible person.

Never been gladder I don't have a twin sister.

Joy has murdered Adam Gordon. The thing is, she doesn't remember. After blacking out a party, she remembers the n
Lauren ✨ (YABookers)
Disclaimer: I received a free copy via Edelweiss for review purposes.


Trigger warning for rape.

After Adam Gordon hurt her sister, Joy gets the ultimate revenge: she kills him. Or did she? Joy can't remember the night, but Adam ended up dead and she had the motive. And someone saw her do it, or at least they say they did. Joy must do what the blackmailer asks and expose the towns secrets, or risk going to prison for the murder of Adam. But the demands get more and more intense, and Joy finds he
PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps
**rated down from 5 to 4 stars as it didn't hold up on reread

Grade: B+

One Word: Riveting

Joy and Grace are as close as identical sisters can be, or they were before Adam Gordon raped Grace. Now Adam's dead, murder or accident? Joy is receiving blackmail letters, from someone who saw her kill Adam. But her best friend, the awkward Preston, says he saw Adam slip and fall.

Wow. Laura Tims hit a home run in her debut novel. Her major and minor characters were rich, damaged, flawed, mostly sympatheti
Heather Wood
Jun 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a YA book that had wonderful crossover appeal. Sometimes when I read YA, I start thinking to myself, “Wow, I’m way too old to be reading this.” However, this wasn’t the case with Please Don’t Tell and I loved the themes the author presented over the course of the story.

Please Don’t Tell is told in alternating points of view, hopping between Joy and Grace. On the surface, Joy is the wild and carefree twin while Grace is the do-gooder, overachiever. But there’s so much going on with the c
A confusing, pointless read with the usual "twin closeness" at the center of the plot. I have read countless other storied that center around the closeness of twins. This was not one of the more interesting ones. Yawn. Snore. Zzzzzzz.
Jasmine (Jasmine Pearl Reads)
Oct 18, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dnf
this book is not giving me any feels... i'm done.
Heather Wood
Apr 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was really good that featured very dark and very intense relationships. Joy and Grace are twin sisters with a very complex relationship. Joy tries to act as a protector but feels she makes things worse for her sister who already went through a horrific trauma. The most intriguing part I found was how the author explored the link between eating disorders and sexual abuse. There wasn't too many major surprises, but I still really enjoyed how well the author wrapped up the story.
Resch Reads
*Book Received in Exchange for Honest Opinion/Review*

This book was something. I think the message the book portrays is intriguing however, the execution is lacking. This book covers a wide variety of mental illnesses, from an eating disorder, obsessiveness compulsive tendencies, to schizophrenia and alcoholism. To speak in these terms of extremes, it is clear from the beginning that Grace needs help, Joy needs help, hell half the town needs help.

Personally, I feel like there is just too
Margot Harrison
I came to this book for the twists, turns, and thrills. And I was not disappointed. But I stayed for the complex, sympathetic characters.

Tims uses alternating perspectives in a clever, thought-provoking way: to show how radically people's views of the world can differ. When the novel switched to Grace's POV, I suddenly had a whole new view of Joy, the initial narrator. It's fascinating—and believable to me—how close these twin sisters are without truly understanding each other. Each looks at the
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Laura Tims is the author of PLEASE DON'T TELL (2016) and THE ART OF FEELING (8/25/2017), both from HarperCollins. She's a mental health advocate, an arts & crafter, and lives in San Diego with a bunny named Noodle. Find her on Twitter @laura_tims.
“The thing about guilt is that it doesn't make you want to fix yourself. It makes you shredded and hopeless and small. It makes you avoid the problem because you hate yourself so much you think you'll make it worse, and then you hate yourself more because you're not doing anything to help the people you hurt.” 7 likes
“The hardest thing is kindness when you know you don't deserve it. I want to deserve it. I want it so bad.” 5 likes
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