Thursday, December 18, 2014

Suspicion by Alexandra Monir

by Alexandra Monir
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Release Date: December 9th 2014
Rate: Loved it (4,5 stars)


A modern-day twist on the classic thriller, Rebecca, with a dash of the supernatural, a powerful romance, and a deadly family mystery. 

“There’s something hidden in the maze.” 

Seventeen-year-old Imogen Rockford has never forgotten the last words her father said to her, before the blazing fire that consumed him, her mother, and the gardens of her family’s English country manor.

For seven years, images of her parents’ death have haunted Imogen’s dreams. In an effort to escape the past, she leaves Rockford Manor and moves to New York City with her new guardians. But some attachments prove impossible to shake—including her love for her handsome neighbor Sebastian Stanhope.

Then a life-altering letter arrives that forces Imogen to return to the manor in England, where she quickly learns that dark secrets lurk behind Rockford’s aristocratic exterior. At their center is Imogen herself—and Sebastian, the boy she never stopped loving.

Combining spine-tingling mystery, romance, and unforgettable characters, Suspicion is an action-packed thrill ride.

Suspicion is a dark romantic YA story full of mystery and secrecy. I have to confess that not only I wanted to read this book because I have already read some of Alexandra's stories and loved them, but because of the pretty cover and the promise of something dark and fascinating waiting for me in the pages of Suspicion.

The story starts with the very end of the story where the main character starts retelling how she have come to this situation. Then the beginning is all about a tragedy no less: the death of Imogen's family and keeps going until we have unraveled all the mysteries and secrets that Rockford Manor has held for some years now. However, in all this turmoil of not really knowing what's happening, we get to meet the "teenage side" of the main character: she has had a crush all her life on Sebastian, who she left years ago at Rockford Manor and who started dating her cousin, and also some magic behind the story and related to the maze, as the cover promises, and Rockford Manor.

The plot has all the twists a story like this has to have and it's well-written. The reader keeps entertained until the very end and you start making your own assumptions of what's going to happen or who would be guilty or something like that. 
I arrived to one conclusion, which I am not going to say to keep this review spoiler free, and in the end happened something similar as to what I was thinking. Some of you might consider this a predictable book, but there's a different from creating an story in your head of what's going to happen to know what's going to happen because the book is obvious or unoriginal. Suspicion is one of those stories that makes you wonder and start creating possible endings in your head.

My only complain about the story is that I was looking forward to a more climatic ending which for me it was not. I expected much more than what I read, but it's not a bad one. I just think the story has the great potential to have one of those scenes that would blow the readers' mind and it ended up being an okay ending. At least for me. 
Also I felt like the crime in the story, from time to time, overshadowed the magic in it and I was left wanting to see, at the ending, this magic unfurl and bring that mind-blowing ending I was talking about.

For a YA thriller, Suspicion has all what readers would want in a story of this kind: mystery, secrets, drama, romance, treason, magic, hot British fictional boyfriends and the British royalty. What else would you want in a story like this?

I highly recommend Suspicion to everyone who's willing to unravel the mystery and secrets that Rockford Manor is hiding. You will have a great time and maybe it will blow your mind.

Author and recording artist Alexandra Monir broke onto the scene in her early twenties with the release of her popular debut YA novel, the paranormal romance TIMELESS (Delacorte Press/Random House). The book caught on quickly, landing on the Barnes & Noble Bestsellers chart and being named one of Amazon's "Best Books of the Month." The sequel, TIMEKEEPER, was published in 2013. Both books in the series have been featured in a variety of media, from USA Today to teen magazines and websites such as J-14, JustJaredJr, and Justine Magazine. SUSPICION (Random House; December 9, 2014) marks Alexandra's first novel outside of the Timeless series, as well as her first foray into the mystery genre. Her fourth YA novel for Random House will be published in April 2016.

Alexandra is also a singer/songwriter, known for integrating music into her books' pages. She wrote and recorded three original songs to accompany TIMELESS and TIMEKEEPER, which were released as the album "The Timeless EP" and distributed by Jimmy Buffett's record label, Mailboat Records. She additionally recorded a new song to be released along with Suspicion, and is composing a stage musical geared toward Broadway. Alexandra is the granddaughter of the late Monir Vakili, the foremost Persian opera singer.

Alexandra currently resides in Los Angeles, California. She has been invited to speak at middle schools and high schools across the country, and at major events including Comic-Con, Bouchercon, the Iranian-American Women's Leadership Conference, and New York Public Library's annual Teen Author Festival, among others.

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