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Paper Valentine by Brenna Yovanoff Book Review-Isabele

Paper Valentine
The city of Ludlow is gripped by the hottest July on record. The asphalt is melting, the birds are dying, petty crime is on the rise, and someone in Hannah Wagnor’s peaceful suburban community is killing girls.

For Hannah, the summer is a complicated one. Her best friend Lillian died six months ago, and Hannah just wants her life to go back to normal. But how can things be normal when Lillian’s ghost is haunting her bedroom, pushing her to investigate the mysterious string of murders? Hannah’s just trying to understand why her friend self-destructed, and where she fits now that Lillian isn’t there to save her a place among the social elite. And she must stop thinking about Finny 
Boone, the big, enigmatic delinquent whose main hobbies seem to include petty larceny and surprising acts of kindness.

With the entire city in a panic, Hannah soon finds herself drawn into a world of ghost girls and horrifying secrets. She realizes that only by confronting the Valentine Killer will she be able move on with her life—and it’s up to her to put together the pieces before he strikes again.

Paper Valentine is a hauntingly poetic tale of love and death by the New York Times bestselling author of The Replacement and The Space Between.
  *A copy was provided by Penguin Group USA for review purposes*
This was my first Brenna Yovanoff, and I have to say I look at her more of a detective than of an author. Yes-the plot was that intense. It also uncannily reminded me of Stephanie Tolan’s ‘Surviving the Applewhites’ for its mention of ‘delinquents’ so many times.  

Don’t get too excited. 

The plot sounds promising, but the creepy parts don’t appear until pretty much the end. We’re talking the last chapters, end. Hannah’s best friend Lillian is haunting her, but she’s been doing it for so long both ‘forget’ she’s dead. So when Lillian becomes obsessed with finding the mysterious killer, Hannah’s basically an accomplice because really- what can a dead person do on their own? 

The story doesn’t really start until there’s not much left. I was actually worried that it would result in another cliffhanger that I couldn’t take! Nevertheless, Ms. Yovanoff has reformed me into a fan. I got sucked into the city of Ludlow and into Hannah’s life, watching silently as she falls for a delinquent who’s really a softie, as she stupidly defies her parents by staying out past curfew, and how she effortlessly talks to ghosts.  I felt like I was watching ‘Criminal Minds’ combined with the latest ‘Paranormal Activity!’ 

Hannah’s a character who’s been too busy dwindling into nothing while constantly being overlooked, while Lillian was always the spotlight. So what happens when Lillian forces Hannah to jump into the world of crime fighting empty-handed? Find out. Book’s out January 8th.

If this is a prelude- then sign me up for the real thing!  

Brenna Yovanoff succeeds in creating a dangerous, incriminating novel that is just a little bit of a teaser. Four stars, easily. Recommended for those of you that have the stomach for horror movies, can take dead bodies, and love your plots dramatic. I promise you won’t forget this one.  

Wishing you all a good start to the New Year, 


  1. Great review. I'm really looking forward to reading Paper Valentine. Sounds just like my cup of tea :)

    1. Thank you. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

  2. I skimmed your review... really the first and last of it. I'm reading it now. :) I will have to revisit when I've finished. I've read all her books (well, the first two and now this one... :) ) and I've loved her so far. I'm about halfway through this one, so I'll try and be back to read your review as soon as I'm done.

    Brandy @ A Little of the Book Life

  3. I am very excited about this book. I have heard some great things and I can't wait to see how they all turn out. The plot sounds very intriguing and the main character sounds great too! Can't wait to pick it up!

    Fantastic review! :)

    ~ Maida

  4. I'm not really a fan of horror movies, but dead bodies and dramatic plots I could take. To read or not to read? I guess I would read this.. it really does sound interesting. Thanks for the review :)


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