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A Good Idea

3.28  ·  Rating details ·  1,589 ratings  ·  308 reviews
Can the right kind of boy get away with killing the wrong kind of girl?

Fin and Betty’s close friendship survived Fin’s ninth-grade move from their coastal Maine town to Manhattan. Calls, letters, and summer visits continued to bind them together, and in the fall of their senior year, they both applied to NYU, planning to reunite for good as roommates.

Then Betty disappears
Kindle Edition, 384 pages
Published February 28th 2017 by Viking Children's Books
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Kristin Yes. And it bugs me that Moracho doesn't appear to acknowledge this anywhere. Both Cylin Busby and Cristin Terrill have openly talked about their book…moreYes. And it bugs me that Moracho doesn't appear to acknowledge this anywhere. Both Cylin Busby and Cristin Terrill have openly talked about their books, The Stranger Game and Here Lies Daniel Tate, being inspired by Nicholas Barclay case. Nowhere in A Good Idea is the real Betty memorialized or mentioned, even though Moracho took everything from her wardrobe to her *name* for the book.(less)
Ruth Ann I was a middle school librarian for 33 years. I do not think this is appropriate for middle school or beginning high school. There is a LOT of drugs, …moreI was a middle school librarian for 33 years. I do not think this is appropriate for middle school or beginning high school. There is a LOT of drugs, drinking, criminal behavior, and sex. (less)

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Average rating 3.28  · 
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 ·  1,589 ratings  ·  308 reviews

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Elle (ellexamines)
I remembered those childhood assemblies in the auditorium of Willingston Elementary, the principal onstage explaining that the solution to any problem was to tell a grown-up. But he never told us what to do when the grown-ups were incompetent or had their own problems or just didn’t fucking care.

This is a fundamentally strange book. I know it’s being marketed as a mystery and a thriller, but to be honest, I don’t think that’s what this is. To me, A Good Idea was an exploration of how anyone
A little bit too much teen angst, casual drug use and sex for my taste, even in a YA novel. But storyline was good, and you didn't know quite who did it until the end. Title of the book doesn't quite fit the overall story. ...more
Kristyn - Reading to Unwind
Feb 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book contains topics that might be triggers. There is a large amount of drug use, sexual contact, binge drinking, and depression in the book. Also, this book deals with mostly just graduated seniors before college so a younger age group.

This book starts up with Fin returning to her father’s house from Manhattan after her best friend Betty had disappeared during their senior year. We jump into the story right as Fin is sitting at graduation awaiting Betty’s name to be mentioned and when it i
Aj the Ravenous Reader
Atmospheric, gloomy, brooding, and kind of slow although it's probably called for, for the kind of story it is telling. It's just that I'm probably no longer in the mood for too much teenage angst. I get it though. The author is trying to be true to the 90s setting. The drug abuse, too much sex, teenagers in a small town lacking creative ways to fill their time and ending up bored or depressed and I appreciate her efforts as well as her solid writing.

But there just seems to be so many things goi
Apr 01, 2017 rated it it was ok
I disliked the characters in this book, they are all lost, messed-up and addiction-prone teenagers, but they seemed real. I didn't like the stifling atmosphere of the village they live in and yet, it may as well be any small village . This is not the kind of book that you can read before going to bed and then sleep like a log but I just couldn't put it down at the beginning.

Fin returns to Williston, her hometown, to seek revenge for the murder of her best friend Betty whose ex-boyfriend is the m
Jay G
Oct 21, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Want to see more bookish things from me? Check out my youtube channel:

Finley and Betty have been best friends since they were little but when Finley moves away after her parents separation, they agree that they will meet again as roommates in college. A year before this is meant to happen, Betty is murdered by her boyfriend Calder. The only evidence for the case is Calder's confession, which everyone believes to be coerced and soon thrown out. Now, seekin
Every once in awhile, I like to read a thriller and so I was hoping "A Good Idea" was going to fulfill my need for a good thriller.

*Book received through the Amazon Vine program*

"A Good Idea" is about Finley, who comes back to her hometown the summer after her best friend, Betty, disappears. She is determined to find out what exactly happened and who is responsible for Betty's disappearance. Overall, I thought the book just okay. It's labeled as YA but to me, the book veers more towards New Adul
Sep 13, 2016 rated it liked it
Loved the writing, but not sure I was 100% committed to the mystery....I'll noodle on it and put up a longer review closer to pub date. ...more
Buddy read with Rayne! Because my status update about reading Acacia with Gergana made, in fact, her ears burn and now she hijacked me for a reading rampage.
Yay for our mind radars!
Apr 14, 2017 rated it it was ok
Eh...this one was just kind of boring.
Mar 02, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review was originally posted on Novel Ink


A Good Idea was a decent book. I enjoyed it from beginning to end but it didn't blow me away. The beginning was, which is odd for me, better than the end. I got into it really quick and wasn't wanting to put it down, but after I read for a while...I had to stop. It kind of took a weird pace for me and I was just meh about it. I'm not sure if that was actually the books doing or me just being me at th

Kelly Gunderman
Feb 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc
Check out this and other reviews on my young adult book blog, Here's to Happy Endings!

**Actual Rating: 3.5 Stars**

As someone who would read pretty much every thriller in existence if I had the time, when a copy of A Good Idea showed up in my mailbox (a huge thank you to Penguin Teen!), I was incredibly excited - especially by that really creepy looking cover, and a synopsis that said I probably shouldn't start this book at night before I went to sleep.

I guess I was honestly expecting a bit of ho
Brittany S.
Initial Impressions 2/14/17 and full review as originally posted HERE on The Book Addict's Guide 4/17/17: 3.5 - 4 stars
A GOOD IDEA was interesting from start to finish but my passion for it sort of went in waves. The beginning was interesting but I wasn’t sure where it was going yet. The middle was thrilling and I tore through the book (well, I would have it I wasn’t listening to an audiobook and was forced to read at a level pace). The ending culminated well but got a little out there in regard
Stephanie A.
I checked at least 20 times that this was really supposed to be a YA novel, because nothing about it felt like YA, it read and felt entirely like an adult thriller written about teens -- please don't mistake that for a compliment -- complete with plenty of unnecessary detailing of hookups to further embellish how Finley is batting a thousand on the Trashiest Teen scoreboard. All of the characters save one are at least 18 and recently graduated, so I genuinely don't even know why they bothered ma ...more
Paige (Illegal in 3 Countries)
I tried my best to get into A Good Idea, but I guess I'm not into homages to old Hollywood film noir? 100% me, I think.

Also, when I peeked at the ending to see if it would be worth it to stick around, it turned out in exactly the same manner as a true crime doc I watched recently.
Apr 22, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This story wasn't for me. Although, I did like the writing and the setting. I did not like the story or the characters. The characters were horrible people, and the story was just as messed up as the characters were. The ending was a surprise, though. ...more
Vikki VanSickle
Jul 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, ya-crossover, ya
Pitch perfect Small-town noir, complete with secrets, lies, drugs, suspicious deaths, old flames, new flames, cabins in the woods, etc.
Sherri Thacker
Feb 22, 2018 rated it liked it
This was a pretty good YA book. Read it in a day.
I wish I could give it a 3.5, I'm sure most people wanted to and that's why it has a low rating. I see it as a 3.66 instead of 3.26.

It was well written and the main character was believable. I'm a little confused about the setting. I thought it was the mid-late 90's, but then she mentioned a book that was published in 2003. Anyway, it's still pretty timely with the whole town having an opioid crisis.

One thing that would have justified it's rating would be (view spoiler)
McCaid Paul
Sep 01, 2019 rated it liked it
This is a quietly impactful book that digs deeper into its mystery than most. At the novel’s end, you’re left wondering if this was ever a mystery at all. With evocative imagery and a foreboding tone, A Good Idea hints at something sinister and, slightly gothic, in its first 100 pages. Fast forward to the final pages, which are deeply unsettling and thought-provoking in their own way. NOT exactly the giant, twisty pay-off you’ll be anticipating.
I was expecting more from the climax, more from th
Weird, but not in a good way.

1) It was set in 1998 but there was no discernible reason WHY.
2) Considering it was set in 1998 a lot of the language used by the teen characters was modern.
3) I found out that this storyline is EXACTLY the same as a real murder that occurred in 1961 and yet there's no reference to that, which surely inspired the novel since even the murdered girl's name is the same.
4) So many drugs. Far too fucking many drugs.
5) Thank god the dog was found, otherwise this would
Jul 09, 2018 rated it did not like it
There’s a huge amount of drug use, sex, lesbian sex and language that turned me off. I did not enjoy this book. The story line is not worth trudging through the murk and smut to finish it. Skip this one.
May 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Bit of teenage in most issues... I got a bit over the gratuitous drug use in a small town thing - but hey, it's pretty well written. ...more
Jan 29, 2020 rated it liked it
Ahhh I dunno. I liked this but I didn't like it at the same time. I wanted to know what happened but didn't particularly like any of the characters. I just don't knowwwww.. 3.5 stars. ...more
Jun 04, 2020 rated it liked it
You've already read this story. Over and over. All the standards are here: plucky daughter of the town newspaper owner, the mysterious and dramatic departed friend, the down-on-his-luck trying to keep the family business going, the random hookup, the rich boy and a mysterious man in the woods. Moracho tries to make the story edgy by a liberal help of sex. It comes off tedious and sad. It made me want to find Finley a good therapist. The dad, of course, is useless. The rich kid's parents are conn ...more
This book was not what I had been expecting. I was in the mood for a good and creepy murder/thriller. From page one this was not so much a murder/thriller as it was about Fin, a girl who is going off the rails after losing her best friend. The book focused more on Fin's gratuitious sex and drug use to numb her pain than it did with anything involving a murder investigation.

Well written and entertaining in its own right but should probably be marketed quite differently in order to reach its targ
Michelle (Pink Polka Dot Books)
3.5ish Stars. The cover made me think this book would be creepy, and in no way was that the case. This isn't a horror, it's a mystery-- and not a very thrilling one at that. The characters are chemically induced for the entirety of the book and the last 50 pages provided nothing new or interesting. I didn't hate it, and found it completely readable, but I was still expecting so much better.

This book is total cover bait. I thought I was going to get a creepy, horror-type book, but this was NOTHIN
awesome, awesome. first, a few things that make this different than other "girl trying to find out truth about trauma/death of her bff":

* Fin knows who did it and she's right.
* it was intentional--not some kind of misunderstanding or tragic accident.
* although the person responsible is not an evil caricature, there's also no sad attempts to make us feel sorry for him.
* Fin does not have any secret affection or fall in love with the man responsible.
* in fact, Fin does not fall in love with any bo
Samantha Adkins
Christina Moracho’s “A Good Idea” turned out to be a not so good idea to read. The book took me ages to get through as I kept getting confused with the characters and mixed up in the overall plot. While the book is well written, it was not my favorite and I felt it could have been shortened a hundred pages due to the amount of unnecessary side information that took the spotlight away from the plot. I find that books tend to be good if they are memorable; if their characters come to life and the ...more
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Crazy for Young A...: A Good Idea, by Cristina Moracho → Start Date: April 28th, 2017 11 12 May 14, 2017 07:34AM  
Based on a true story? 1 12 May 10, 2017 02:56PM  

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Cristina Moracho is a novelist and freelance writer/editor. Her debut novel, Althea & Oliver (Viking), will be published this October. She lives in Red Hook, Brooklyn, where she makes all the bad decisions.

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