Title: Death Spiral
Author: Janie Chodosh
Publisher: Poisoned Pencil
Genres: Contemporary, Mystery
Review Copy: Digital ARC from NetGalley
Availability: On shelves now
Review: Sixteen-year-old Faith Flores found her mother dead in their apartment. Her mother had been a junkie for years, so the police and everyone except Faith believes that it was an overdose. Her mother had been clean for quite a while though. She is even more puzzled after Melinda, one of her mother’s friends, contacts her. Melinda mentions a clinical trial that they had both been in an attempt to get off of the drugs. In spite of the treatment program, it isn’t long before Melinda has also died of an overdose. Two deaths so close together has Faith looking for answers and stumbling into a mess of trouble herself.
The storyline is fairly grim as Faith struggles with her grief and wonders if she will follow in her mothers path of addiction, but there are also many passages that made me smile. Faith has a wry sense of humor that pops out often enough to take a little of the edge off. I always appreciate a bit of snappy dialogue and the personalities and friendships in the story allow for plenty of that. Death Spiral has a nice balance of friendship, mystery, humor, and danger.
The relationships were what truly kept me involved in the story. Faith grew up in survival mode so she tends to keep herself locked away from people, but there are a few who manage to sneak past the walls she’s built. Her relationships take a beating, but it is interesting to see them develop as Faith struggles to know herself and the person she is becoming in the midst of all the turmoil. I look forward to learning more about Faith as this series continues.
Recommendation: Get it soon if you are up for a fast paced mystery.
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