Prep School Confidential by Kara Taylor
Series: Prep School Confidential #1
Published by St. Martin’s Griffin
Publish Date: July 30, 2013
Find it here: Goodreads / Amazon / B&N
Anne Dowling practically runs her exclusive academy on New York’s Upper East Side—that is, until she accidentally burns part of it down and gets sent to a prestigious boarding school outside of Boston. Determined to make it back to New York, Anne couldn’t care less about making friends at the preppy Wheatley School. That is, until her roommate Isabella’s body is found in the woods behind the school.
When everyone else is oddly silent, Anne becomes determined to uncover the truth no matter how many rules she has to break to do it. With the help of Isabella’s twin brother Anthony, and a cute classmate named Brent, Anne discovers that Isabella wasn’t quite the innocent nerdy girl she pretended to be. But someone will do anything to stop Anne’s snooping in this fast-paced, unputdownable read—even if it means framing her for Isabella’s murder. -(excerpt from Goodreads)
My Thoughts: To be honest with you guys, this is not normally the type of book that I’d pick up to read: it doesn’t have a cover that screams out to me and I don’t normally gravitate toward the boarding-school nor the mystery-type books like so many do. However, I started reading this one just to see what it was like and I actually ended up liking it quite a bit. I thought it was a really fun, easy read and now I’m really looking forward to the next book in the series. How’s that for reading outside of my norm?
Anne Dowling has been kicked out of St. Bernadette’s in NYC.
First of all, Wheatley is a boarding school, which means she has to leave NY and her friends and her home and everything behind, and she isn’t too thrilled about this – but she’d rather do that than homeschooling. Second of all, it’s in Boston. BOSTON. To her New York mind, she just can’t believe her family would send her to such a place.
Anyway, Anne arrives (the school year has already started, mind you) and finds that her roommate is Isabella Fernandez. Isabella is really nice and Anne likes her, but Anne notices that she doesn’t run with the popular crowd. Anne soon finds out that this is because Isabella is a scholarship student, not wealthy, and doesn’t really have that many friends. Also, she’s a little strange. But she’s really smart and fun and Anne likes her anyway.
ALSO: Anne finds her quick adjustment to Wheatley a little odd. The other students almost gravitate to her like she’s a new toy. They want to sit near her at lunch. They all introduce themselves to her and offer to help her with things. She expected to be the new girl and have to make friends on her own. Anne finds out really quickly it’s because she’s basically coming in and taking over where Alexis Westbrook used to run the school. By simply standing up to the obnoxious and rude Alexis a few times and not backing down, Anne has earned this position as “queen” and in doing this, the majority of the student body has started “following” her. This dynamic is really strange to Anne – one that she didn’t really ask for – but Anne doesn’t have time to figure it all out and set anything straight because something crazy happens on campus…
Anne’s roommate Isabella is found murdered.
Right away, everyone is suspicious of someone else BUT! nobody seems to be doing anything about it. Isabella was a bit of a loner that kept to herself, so there aren’t that many people jumping up and demanding justice for her. But Anne feels like someone needs to find her killer because 1) HELLO, Isabella deserves that and 2) the killer could still be out there!
The police seem to be dragging their feet in the investigation and the school almost seems uninterested in finding the killer, so what does Anne do? She decides she’ll figure out who killed Anne on her own! And here begins the bulk of the story – her investigation.
Anne questions everyone. Anne gathers clues. Anne follows people, sneaks into rooms, searches things, finds things, etc. She actually does a really great job at being a sleuth in this little amateur investigation, and she almost gets hurt/killed more than once. She must be a very brave girl because it never deters her from digging deeper and looking harder for Isabella’s killer.
It is a love triangle.
Brent Conway is a fellow student. Very popular and good-looking, Anne is attracted to him right away. She isn’t the only one – there are other girls at the school with their eyes on Brent. The thing with Brent is that Anne isn’t initially entirely sure if he is interested in her. By the time she’s figured out that he is, she’s met Isabella’s brother, Anthony Fernandez. Anthony is the bad-boy type, the blue-collar guy with a history of violence. There is immediate attraction there as well, and the two even see each other quite a bit as they pack up and go through Isabella’s things in the room she shared with Anne in the residence Hall.
I personally liked both guys as characters a lot. As love interests? You know, this book never really gets romance-y enough for me to care which boy Anne chooses. But I think both boys carry over into the next installment because they’re both mentioned in the summary for the next book, so perhaps by then I’ll be able to make a choice. (I am bad bad bad for liking both love interests lately.)
- Here is where the love triangle begins.
- Anne dabbles in some things in her “investigation” that are really, really dangerous.
Do you tend to love boarding school settings or mysteries?