Only She Came Back by Margot Harrison
Genre: Young Adult Thriller
Publishing Date: November 14, 2023
A chilling thriller about an unlikely friendship between a true-crime fan and a former high school classmate suspected of murdering her influencer boyfriend, perfect for fans of Holly Jackson and Courtney Summers.
On July 28 at 6:30 p.m., Kiri Dunsmore walks out of the desert wearing her boyfriend’s sweatshirt, covered in his blood. Dazed and on the verge of unconsciousness, she tells a cashier that he’s still out there and most likely dead. The disappearance of Callum Massey, a “survival guru” with hundreds of thousands of YouTube followers, rocks the nation. And Kiri is a prime suspect. Back in Kiri’s hometown, true-crime fanatic Sam is completely hooked on the case—especially now that she recognizes the suspect as shy Katie from high school. Although they didn’t know each other well, that doesn’t stop Sam from reaching out to befriend her old classmate. But when Kiri starts to confide in her, Sam realizes there’s more to the story than she had imagined. Can she keep Kiri’s secrets even though revealing them could put her where she’s always longed to be—at the center of the story?
Content Warning: violence, emotional abuse and grooming, dieting, disordered eating and mentions of fatphobia, mentions of past domestic abuse, brief substance use, off-page animal death (chicken)
About the Author:
Margot Harrison has a lifelong habit of creeping herself out and now attempts to creep out others via her fiction.
Her first YA novel, The Killer in Me (Little, Brown, 2016), was an Indies Introduce pick and a finalist for the Vermont Book Award and received a starred review from Publishers Weekly. Her second, The Glare (Little, Brown, 2020), received starred reviews from Kirkus Reviews and Booklist. Her third, We Made It All Up (Little, Brown, July 2022), is a Junior Library Guild selection and has appeared on “best of” or “most anticipated” lists on BuzzFeed, Teen Vogue, Book Riot and Lit Hub.
I do love a good thriller so I was excited about Only She Came Back but when I came to read it I found it was not what I was expecting. For me none of the Main Characters were likeable but I do think that it gave the book a bit of an edge. I did find it a bit slow to start and that some of the chapters were a bit too long and I could see it getting lower than 3 stars but then it changed and did grab my attention but by then I just wanted to finish the book. For me the diary and excerpts from You Tube Videos worked really well but having the story told afterwards did not work for me. I would of liked it if the story took place after the event.
I do believe that this book would make a good book to discuss since it is about Social Media and how far a person would go
For all the reasons above Only She Came Back gets 3 stars