Premeditated

Josin L. McQuein. Delacorte, $17.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-385-74329-7
McQuein (Arclight) relies on some formulaic twists in an otherwise solid revenge novel. When goth girl Dinah's 14-year-old cousin, Claire ends up in a coma after a suicide attempt, Dinah discovers her diary, learns what led to her decision, and decides to seek revenge. Within days, she has revamped her image, bleached out her black hair dye, and removed piercings in order to present herself as the sort of girl who might attend the elite private school where Claire was a student. With help from her rich uncle, Dinah enrolls, planning to destroy the life of Brooks Walden, the boy who drove her cousin to try to kill herself. McQuein doles out the backstory slowly via flashbacks and glimpses of Claire's diary, which lead to revelations that are gratifying yet not unexpected; Dinah's unbending vendetta against Brooks ("Claire met Brooks; he was evil—the end") suggests early on that her convictions will be upended. Still, McQuein's subplots give the story added substance, and Dinah's broken relationship with her mother underpins much of the novel's psychological dimension and offers moments of powerful storytelling. Ages 14–up. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/14/2013
Release date: 10/01/2013
Genre: Children's
Open Ebook - 182 pages - 978-0-307-98316-9
Library Binding - 336 pages - 978-0-375-99105-9
Paperback - 336 pages - 978-0-385-74330-3
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