Book Review: ‘The Prized Girl’ Is A Good Debut Novel

Author Amy K. Green’s debut novel is a thrilling story of a 13 year old girl that has been murdered in a small New England town and the people in her life and who might have killed her. With plot twists and turns, the story flows along up to the climatic ending and trying to figure out who was the killer.

Virginia Kennedy is 26 years old and her 13 year old half-sister Jenny has been murdered. Her mother Linda has been making her do beauty contests for years now and Jenny has been doing good in them. But she has decided she doesn’t want to do them anymore. This makes Linda mad and is taking it out on Jenny. Jenny has changed now and is not the same outgoing person she had been. She’s shunned her friends and can’t take her family life. Her dad is gone all week working in New York and only home on weekends and not that parental. And we later learn he has a shocking secret.

When Jenny is murdered and the police think they have the killer Virginia is not so sure and decides to investigate herself. Clues turn to her former teacher (and lover) Mark Renkin and to a 15 year old boy named JP, who may have been Jenny’s boyfriend and they had a plan to runaway together, until things went very wrong. It all leads up to the shocking reveal and lives in jeopardy.

The story is written in two ways. We follow Virginia in real time and then we follow Jenny in her final days leading up to her murder. It’s an effective way of story-telling that covers all bases about the family, what happened leading to her death and the aftermath. If Amy keeps writing books like this she will be someone to watch in the future.

You can pick up The Prized Girl in stores on Tuesday, January 14th from Dutton.

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