Author: Mindy Mejia
Published by: Atria Books
Publication Date: January 3, 2017
High school senior Hattie Hoffman has spent her whole life playing many parts: the good student, the good daughter, the good citizen. When she’s found brutally stabbed to death on the opening night of her high school play, the tragedy rips through the fabric of her small town community. Local sheriff Del Goodman, a family friend of the Hoffmans, vows to find her killer, but trying to solve her murder yields more questions than answers. It seems that Hattie’s acting talents ran far beyond the stage. Told from three points of view—Del, Hattie, and the new English teacher whose marriage is crumbling—Everything You Want Me to Be weaves the story of Hattie’s last school year and the events that drew her ever closer to her death.
Everything You Want Me to Be is the first book of 2017 that I read, and I have to say, it started my year off on a good note. I wasn’t sure I was even in the mood for it at the time, but I was quickly hooked. It isn’t exactly spectacular or mind-blowing, but it’s still pretty good mystery that kept me intrigued. There’s definitely an addictive quality about it.
I like how this is told in a nonlinear way and with tree points-of-view. We get Hattie’s story about what transpired up until she was killed, all while we follow the sheriff investigating her murder. We also get the POV of Peter, the English teacher, who plays an important role in the story. In addition to figuring out who the murderer is and what exactly happened, a big question is: who is the real Hattie?
The characters can be a bit unreliable at times, leaving the reader wondering what’s true and who is really responsible for the murder up until the end. I mean, it’s kind of predictable, but it does have some nice little twists in there. The author does a good job weaving it all together.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book.