Thursday, March 5, 2015

Blog Tour: Dead to Me by Mary McCoy {Review + Playlist + Giveaway}

Release date: March 3, 2015
Author info: Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Pages: 304
Format: Egalley
Source: Publisher provided for review
Buy the book: Barnes & Noble | Amazon | The Book Depository
LA Confidential for the YA audience. This alluring noir YA mystery with a Golden Age Hollywood backdrop will keep you guessing until the last page.

"Don't believe anything they say."

Those were the last words that Annie spoke to Alice before turning her back on their family and vanishing without a trace. Alice spent four years waiting and wondering when the impossibly glamorous sister she idolized would return to her--and what their Hollywood-insider parents had done to drive her away.

When Annie does turn up, the blond, broken stranger lying in a coma has no answers for her. But Alice isn't a kid anymore, and this time she won't let anything stand between her and the truth, no matter how ugly. The search for those who beat Annie and left her for dead leads Alice into a treacherous world of tough-talking private eyes, psychopathic movie stars, and troubled starlets--and onto the trail of a young runaway who is the sole witness to an unspeakable crime. What this girl knows could shut down a criminal syndicate and put Annie's attacker behind bars--if Alice can find her first. And she isn't the only one looking.

Evoking classic film noir, debut novelist Mary McCoy brings the dangerous glamour of Hollywood's Golden Age to life, where the most decadent parties can be the deadliest, and no drive into the sunset can erase the crimes of past.
How could Dead to Me not be awesome? A gritty mystery set in the Golden Age of Hollywood, where the word of a single girl could topple one of the day's biggest stars and a thriving criminal enterprise? It was, as promised, pretty awesome.

Dead to Me starts off with Alice at the hospital, seeing her idolized older sister for the first time in four years. Alice's narration feels very much how I imagine a noir film's narrator sounds. (This is something with which I have no experience, aside from the vignettes in Fairly Oddparents episodes when Timmy imagines himself a detective. Yep.) This is very cool from the standpoint of tone, less so from one of quality of description, but I liked it a lot.

All through the book, Alice is torn between her desperate need to help her sister and her anger. While she seeks the answers, she's still plagued by questions as to why Annie never wrote, called, or tried to communicate in any way. She struggles with Annie having a whole new life and friends that Alice knows nothing of. The push and shove of Alice's mind is very human--just because we love someone doesn't mean we can't be mad at them.

The mystery itself was a head-scratcher. It seems time and time again that it's all figured out, and there are several moments that feel like they're heading toward a big conclusion, but a new bit of information pops up or someone does something unexpected, and the mystery gets all the more muddled. In the end, the motive and perpetrators are largely simple. It's only that no single person had enough pieces to puzzle everything together.

If you like mystery, a bit of Hollywood glamour, and a lot of dirty underbelly, Dead to Me is for you. With zero romance, it's the rare YA that focuses wholly on its story--and it thrives because of it.

THIS WAS SO HARD! I figured at first the time period was the twenties, because...I just figured, but from the mentions in the book, it's likely the late forties or early fifties. Harder. So, some songs are from the time period, like might have played in the places Alice goes, and some are inspired by the events and relationships in the book. You can probably tell which is which. :)

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Follow the Dead To Me blog tour and don't miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.

Mary McCoy is a librarian at the Los Angeles Public Library. She has also been a contributor to On Bunker Hill and the 1947project, where she wrote stories about Los Angeles's notorious past. She grew up in western Pennsylvania and studied at Rhodes College and the University of Wisconsin. Mary now lives in Los Angeles with her husband. Her debut novel, Dead To Me, is a YA mystery set in the glamorous, treacherous world of 1940s Hollywood.

Win (1) hardcopy of DEAD TO ME by Mary McCoy (US Only)

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