Sunday, December 16, 2018

Book Review: The Wrong Girl (Return to Fear Street #2) by R.L. Stine

Bestselling author R.L. Stine returns with a thrilling retro horror story with a terrifying twist, perfect for fans of Stranger Things!

Poppy Miller swears she will get payback for Jack Sabers’s cruel prank that humiliated her in front of all her friends.

Then her classmates start turning up dead.

All eyes are on Poppy. Is Poppy being framed? Or did the kids of Shadyside High mess with the wrong girl?

In this all-new Fear Street story, only one thing’s for sure—someone is out for DEADLY revenge.

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My Review:
I've always been a huge fan of R.L. Stine. I grew up with all of his books especially the original Fear Street series, so when I heard Stine had released a Return to Fear Street series, I knew I had to read it. I loved You May Now Kill the Bride, the first book in the series. However, The Wrong Girl was not very good.

The pacing for The Wrong Girl was incredibly slow save for a few chapters where it actually sped up to a decent pace. I found myself wondering how much longer I'd have to read before the action started. This book just drones on and on, and I found myself becoming very bored quickly. In fact, I only really finished The Wrong Girl because I felt like I had to since I wanted to read the next book in the series even though these are stand alone novels.

The plot for The Wrong Girl sounds like it has the potential to be really interesting judging by the book synopsis. However, it was a major yawn fest. I really found it hard to believe most of the plot. Poppy, the main character, and her circle of friends decide to form a prank club and put their pranks online. The pranks get more wild each time. Eventually, her friends are attacked and some are killed. Really, the pranks and the harming of her friends are not related. I have trouble believing that Poppy and her friends would not be in any trouble after the pranks they committed especially as the pranks were uploaded live for all to see. The police in Shadyside must be very relaxed and not mind crime very much. There is a plot twist that I didn't see coming, I will admit that. Oh, and the person murdering/causing harm to Poppy's friends, well, that was pretty obvious. I know this is a teen read, but I'm pretty sure even a young teen could figure it out. Another thing that bothered me was although this is part of the Return to Fear Street series, The Wrong Girl mentions Fear Street in one chapter only a couple of times, and it's only mentioned because one of the characters lives on that street. It's like Stine added the whole Fear Street element in as a quick afterthought.

The characters weren't very great. They all felt very shallow, petty, immature, and one dimensional. Poppy was extremely spoiled and annoying as were most of the characters in this story with the exception of Manny and Mr. Harlowe (both of whom I actually liked). I didn't really understand why the character of Lucas was in the book. There was really no need for him. I felt like none of the characters in The Wrong Girl were real representations of teenagers. I had a hard time relating to any of the characters. There was no back story on the characters either which made the characters even less relatable.

Trigger warnings include underage drinking, murder, violence (although not graphic), self harm (cutting), and breaking the law.

Overall, The Wrong Girl left me feeling disappointed. Nothing about the book held my attention, and it just felt like it was written by an eleven year old in a rush to get his/her English homework done, not a great author like R.L. Stine. Sadly, I would not recommend The Wrong Girl by R.L. Stine to anyone. I really hope the next book in the series is much better.

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