One Stupid Thing

Keylight. Mar. 2021. 304p. Tr $25.99. ISBN 9781684425327; pap. $15.99. ISBN 9781684425310.
Gr 9 Up–Summers on Nantucket should be light and carefree, but life turns very dark when a driver is killed after three teens throw eggs at his car, causing it to veer off the road and hit a tree. The alternating voices of Trevor, Sophia, and Jamie, who threw the eggs, and Violet, whose stepfather the teens suspect may actually be responsible for the car crash, tell rather than show a story that deals with the aftermath of the crash and the narrators’ desire to solve the mysterious death. The four main characters, who drink and hook up at the drop of a hat, are inconsistent and extremely privileged. One minute they are riddled with guilt and plan to make amends, the next they are involved in activities that show poor judgment, like when Trevor sets up a Tik Tok account for the six-year-old he is watching. The mystery is quickly tied up after the four teens confront the perpetrator and solve the crime, an ending that lacks credibility. Trevor, Sophia, and Jamie are white, and Violet is described as having olive skin.
VERDICT Offer readers better-crafted teenage whodunits like Ashley Elston’s This is Our Story or Karen McManus’s One of Us is Lying.

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