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Spin

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3.68  ·  Rating details ·  834 ratings  ·  217 reviews
Sixteen-year-old Paris Secord's (aka DJ ParSec) career--and life--has come to an untimely end, and the local music scene is reeling. No one is feeling the pain more than her shunned pre-fame best friend, Kya, and Paris's chief groupie, Fuse. But suspicion trumps grief, and since each suspects the other of Paris's murder, they're locked in a high-stakes game of public accus ...more
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published January 29th 2019 by Scholastic Press
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Lynette Very fast paced, covers lots of important issues. I don't think it's something that would be allowed in schools. I would recommend! …moreVery fast paced, covers lots of important issues. I don't think it's something that would be allowed in schools. I would recommend! (less)

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Average rating 3.68  · 
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 ·  834 ratings  ·  217 reviews


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jv poore
Mr. Giles’ Spin is a suck-you-in-so-fast YA suspense novel centered around teen-aged rising star, DJ ParSec. Or maybe more honestly, her murder.

Childhood friend and confidante, Kya, is incredibly proud of Paris’ success. Not just because of her own countless contributions in creating ParSec’s first set up. Kya has always been her biggest fan, staunchest supporter and most fierce defender. But, when one event shatters a huge part of Kya’s life and she desperately needs her best bud, she gets the
...more
Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell

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Wow, Scholastic went edgy. When I was a kid, I think the most controversial book I ever read from a Scholastic imprint was Louis Sachar's HOLES. I'm honestly psyched about this, because I've gone on rants before about how way too many young adults books try to over-simplify and over-sanitize their content to make it kid-friendly, when we live in a world that really isn't kid-friendly and kids are going to look for content they relate to.
...more
Rincey
Jul 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: poc-author
Fun, fast-paced, gripping mystery. I had an inkling about the whodunit part but there were a few other twists that I didn't see coming. ...more
OutlawPoet
Feb 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
First, if you're looking for diverse characters, this is for you. It's not 'diversity for diversity's sake'. In other words, this isn't some dude jumping on the diverse YA bandwagon. He's been writing for a while. The author himself is a POC and (shock!) he understands that POC aren't all the same. We have rich people, poor people, people who love music, people who code. Of all races. This will appeal to any YA reader.

Looking beyond the diversity tag, we simply have an excellent YA thriller. It'
...more
Regina
This book was DOPE.
The mystery was well done, with enough red herrings to keep me entranced. And the beautiful acknowledgment and integration of current and past hip-hop was extremely on point.

My only complaint was the audiobook, which would have done better to secure younger narrators to match the tone of the text. Bahni Turpin is always amazing, but there were a lot of times throughout the book where it was easy to forget the intended ages of the characters. AND one of the other narrators tend
...more
Dahlia
Man, this was so good. I always think Giles's thrillers are good but I think this is my fave so far. I just loved the voices, loved the pacing, loved the way he incorporated the dark web, fandom (and standom), and social justice, and also made it a friendship story, not to mention I thought the mystery went to a very cool place. I am such a fan and this was honestly even better than I thought it'd be. ...more
Kate (GirlReading)
Not only does this book feature a brilliantly gripping mystery, it also superbly explores the all too prevalent and dangerous issue regarding the lack of interest/effort from the public and police when it comes to looking for justice for crimes against Black girls and women.

Despite a somewhat slow start, I found myself entirely hooked to this story. I loved Kya, Fuse and Paris's distinct voices (which were especially well portrayed in the audiobook narration).

It's got a gripping mystery, fanta
...more
Bang Bang Books
Mar 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
3.75

I wish Giles would take some thriller writing workshops from E. Lockhart or Jennifer Lynn Barnes because this book could have been so good. He was missing some character development that would have made this book a 4 star or more.

This book is basically a thriller/whodunit in the music/rap world which in itself is nuanced. Considering the mysterious deaths of Biggie and Tupac, this setting is not out of the ordinary.

My issues with this book are minor but it was a lot of little things that ad
...more
Richelle Robinson
I've read other works by this author before in anthologies so I was excited to read a full length novel. It did take me some time to get into the story but once I did, I was hooked. I enjoyed how in depth this book was when it came to music, shady people and the intense fandom as well. This book also touched on the lack of media coverage when a person of color is killed which I thought was an important topic as well. When the killer is revealed I honestly wasn’t expecting it to be that person. I ...more
Athena of Velaris
"How much grief, on average, does it take to break a person?"

This novel follows two girls who must work together to figure out who murdered their respective friend, a DJ named Paris. Kya is a soft-spoken tech genius, while Fuse is a charismatic rich girl great at marketing. They don't like each other at first, but slowly form a bond as they track down Paris's killer. I loved their dynamic, and the dialog between them was perfect. Kya and Fuse were well-developed characters, even if no one else
...more
Kate
Feb 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this one! Very Veronica Mars meets IQ. I cannot recommend the audiobook enough- the three narrators were really wonderful, and had me glued to phone, listening until the very end. I already adore Lamar Giles, and so glad that he's a Virginia author, and Spin was everything I loved (murder, mystery, teen sleuths) and more! I would read a whole series with Fuse and Kya, navigating their friendship, eating at Five Guys and solving mysteries. ...more
Jamie Canaves
I love Giles’ characters and this time he gave me three great ones! DJ ParSec, real name Paris Secord, is a sixteen-year-old up-and-coming DJ ready for fame and most importantly fortune–or was before she was murdered. Being questioned in the police station are Fuse, basically her social media hype girl, and Kya, her childhood best friend. But the questioning doesn’t last long because the girls’ parents refuse to let the police keep questioning them, plus they swear they just found Paris dead and ...more
Kelly
A really compelling mystery about a murdered DJ, her two closest friends/fans who -- at the time of her death -- were on the outs with her, and about police brutality, black justice, racial inequality in the media (there was a lot here reminiscent of Tiffany D. Jackson's MONDAY'S NOT COMING), and about social media and technology and the Dark Web. The twists here are solid and compelling, and both Kya and Fuse both have outstanding voices. This is my first Giles and won't be my last. Though Angi ...more
Mary Thomas
Dec 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Giles has a winner here!! Gripping from the start, I loved this mystery about the murder of a talented young DJ.

I think teen readers will LOVE this book- the social media, the friendships, school life and language was all spot on. And it will certainly appeal to our high taste readers (s/o to Nic Stone) even with the length.

Giles manages to layer in a lot here: the characters meditate on class, race, and whose story gets told in the media and why.

I will absolutely be purchasing two copies for
...more
Megan Bogert
Mar 22, 2020 rated it liked it
I think a younger crowd (read: my students) would really like this book. There was a mix of music, drama, hip hop culture, and mystery. Not my usual meal of detectives and who-done-its, but a nice little snack nonetheless.
Afoma (Reading Middle Grade)
Feb 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this fast-paced YA mystery! A riveting story of two high-schoolers thrown into solving the mystery of their best friend’s death. After popular teen DJ, Paris Secord is murdered, two of her friends (who are not on speaking terms) come under public suspicion. Both girls are forced to band together against a group of darkly fanatic supporters, uncooperative police staff, and other hindrances to their efforts.

This novel is captivating, and I finished the 10-hour audiobook in two day
...more
Alex
Oct 06, 2019 added it
I’ll be honest and say I’ve never been a huge fan of murder mysteries. I feel all books written as so are pretty predictable as it is more likely of a reader nowadays to evidently know who the killer is. Nonetheless, Spin by Lamar Giles completely reversed my opinion with its radical take on the classic murder mystery. The School Library Journal agrees with me in their review on Amazon Books stating, “This novel transcends its genre.” The book’s unique twist on its genre and strong message made ...more
Kristen
Frustrated, I said, "We already told you we didn't do it!"
"We heard you. But our demand is simple: Find out who did."

Paris Secord, also known as DJ ParSec, has begun to make a name for herself. But she's still reaching when her life is cut painfully short. She's found dead, sprawled on her own turntable, by her two best friends: Kya Caine, the girl who was Paris's only best friend before her fame, and Fatima "Fuse" Fallon, the fan-turned-friend who helped manage Paris's social media. The gir
...more
Heather Johnson
Sep 02, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5/5

This is the most 2019 book I've ever read. The pop culture references in this book will NOT stand the test of time, but the murder mystery had me hooked! Multiple narrators help drive the plot, and readers first meet Kaya and Fuse in the police station, shortly after they both find their friend and up and coming musician, Par-Sec, dead.

Kaya has been Par-Sec's friend since they were children, both commiserating over having absent fathers, living a life made up of thrift store finds and hand
...more
Carli
Jan 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to Edelweiss and Scholastic for the advance Kindle copy of this 1.29.19 release. All opinions are my own.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 for this engaging thriller. When teen DJ ParSec (Paris, to her friends) is found dead, her childhood best friend and new friend/groupie/promoter have to put aside their (major) differences as they search for her killer. They find themselves being pursued by a dangerous fan group as they near the truth. I absolutely love that this book has older characters and a gritty
...more
Sarah Krajewski
Jun 14, 2020 rated it really liked it
Paris Secord, the famous DJ ParSec, is dead, and her two close friends discover her body. One of them, Kya, is a childhood friend who has felt ostracized since Paris became a rising star. The other, Fuse, helped Paris become DJ ParSec. The girls are sworn enemies, but now they have something in common: they want to find Paris’s killer. The police don’t seem to have any leads, but members Paris’s loyal fanbase, ParSec Nation, are willing to go to the extreme to get justice. As Kya and Fuse begin ...more
Raina
Feb 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya, mystery
This was one of the first books I picked up when I started planning my middle school visit tour.
And it did not disappoint.

As I told the middle schoolers, Spin tells the story of a DJ who gets murdered, and the two people who have to find out who did it.

I loved the social media and music business content, the vivid characters, and felt that the story was served exceptionally well by the alternating perspectives, as Kya and Fuse's perspectives on each other changes in so many stark ways.

I loved
...more
Ellen
Overall, it was a decent mystery. I was a little disappointed in the "reveal" because a) I'd already figured it out; and b) it was a little anti climatic. I liked the main two girls, though I sometimes struggled remembering which point of view I was in. I did like the style and that it was a diverse book written by a diverse author. I may check out some more books by Lamar Giles.

Content Warning: Some fairly mild language and a little violence.

2019 challenge: An "own voices" book
...more
Carolyn
Apr 12, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, middle-grades, ya
This was fun! Liked the mystery, like the girls’ personalities. The mystery wrapped up a little fast for the pace of the rest of the story. I’d love to actually here these tunes.

Re: classroom library: the characters are in high school and might be a little out of middle schoolers’ interest, but there wasn’t anything worrisome or inappropriate so I’d be OK putting this in my 6th/7th library (if this was my copy! I actually borrowed it from our school librarian).
M
Nov 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Overall, I was impressed and intrigued by how much Giles put into this book without taking anything away from the main plot or clogging up the mystery. It was engaging and thrilling from beginning to end, with some real emotional punches thrown in every couple of pages. I really loved it and I can’t wait to read more books written by this author.

Find my full review on the blog.
...more
Steph O'Neil
Jul 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book seriously blew my mind! I couldn't stop reading and immediately knew I would have students who loved this. It is a great murder mystery, but it also deals with some pretty serious issues: race, class, social media, fame, family, friendship. One of my favorite books that I've read this year. ...more
Jen McGraw
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Can you say Beyhive? I enjoyed reading this young adult mystery, and my students are going to love it also! The pop culture references were excellent!
Caro
Mar 06, 2019 rated it liked it
i didn't feel any type of connection towards this story, but it wasn't bad at all, it just wasn't my cup of tea.

actual rating: 2.75/5
...more
Lupita
Mar 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
A mystery like Veronica Mars. Girls that are enemies, but become friends. And a recipe on how to honor a lost friend. Highly recommend this fast action packed read!
Sarah Dawson
May 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-mystery
Interesting points of view, particularly ParSec's countdown to the day she died. ...more
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Lamar "L. R." Giles writes books for teens and adults. FAKE ID, his debut Young Adult Thriller, will be published by HarperCollins in 2014. He is represented by Jamie Weiss Chilton of the Andrea Brown Literary Agency and resides in Chesapeake, VA with his wife. ...more

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Dhonielle Clayton is a YA author, a 2018 Goodreads Choice Award nominee, and the chief operating officer of We Need Diverse Books, a...
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“She hung with hoodlums. So-called ‘rappers’ who really only write barely coherent poems about violence and debauchery.”… Hypocrite hovered over my tongue. Poems about violence and debauchery? Like he didn’t grow up in the ‘80s and ‘90s singing along to rhythmic revolutionaries, proud gangsters, and player presidents. Those songs only told what people were really going through. They were journalism, not instructions.” 0 likes
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