France is again in the headlines when a bus full of British teenagers is bombed. One of the teens on board is Sabina “Bee” Ortley, whose father has recently been suspended from the British police.
Bish Ortley is having a terrible time dealing with his divorce and his job loss, but springs out of his depression and into action, helping hunt down the lead suspect, Violette LeBrac Zidane. Zidane is another teen on the bus, but comes from two generations of bombers causing almost everyone to think she was responsible, but the police believe Violette may have been the target.
The relationships between the teens, their parents, and the police help draw the reader in and make an emotional connection, while the novel moves between different points of view and delves into themes of prejudice, dysfunctional families, and has political overtones as well.
This timely thriller is the popular young adult author Marchetta’s adult debut, and while her fans will easily make the transition with her, she should gain some new adult readers as well.
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10/16 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™
TELL THE TRUTH, SHAME THE DEVIL by Melina Marchetta. Mulholland Books (October 11, 2016). ISBN 978-0316349291. 416p.