Publisher: William Morrow
Publication Date: 3 March 2015
Format: Paperback, 336 pgs
Prestigious boarding school always give one an impression of wealth and glamour; and sometimes what lies behind the glamour is deceit and secrets. Well, at least in fiction it is. And this is where the main setting is in Dark Rooms, whereby two sisters Grace and Nica Baker attend the Chandler Academy in Hartford, Connecticut. Their parents are teaching there, too.
Grace and Nica aren't that close, but they aren't distant either. They are only a year apart as of their age. Grace is the quiet girl who is often seen as Nica's shadow, which is weird given she is the eldest. Nica, on the other hand is the opposite of Grace. She is daring, blunt and is known to others to be on the wild side. The night she died she is only sixteen.
However, the crime is solved quickly the way the bullet hit her gut. They had sum it all up about an unrequited love and that a lonely schoolmate called Manny with a suicide note confession is the guy who had killed her. Nica had a boyfriend called Jamie and they had broken on and off; and then there is this mystery guy whom Nica was seeing secretly before her death. Or is there something more behind? What had happened in Chandler? With these doubts in mind and her own agenda in searching the truth, Grace becomes an investigator in her own rights.
I have to admit I didn't warm up to Grace (or any of the characters, truth be told); the pacing is somewhat slow in the beginning and I couldn't find myself connected to Grace, who is the main voice here. There is also a part which I disagreed with Grace's motivation of pursuing the truth but I let on and was glad I didn't give it up because the intensity began towards the middle of the book and took my attention away from it.
Although the mystery (and the ending) isn't as absorbing as I had expected, it still made an engrossing read because like Grace, I wanted to find out who the killer is.