So, at first, I was kind of annoyed with how many characters there were, and had to keep flipping to the inside cover to remember who everyone was. Despite that, I did like how everyone had all these different goals, and then there was Parker. For some reason, I really liked Parker, but part of me felt like she needed to get over herself. Like, just because your face is scarred doesn't mean you can drop out of life. I don't want to seem like I'm cruel and heartless, because she really did have some struggles, but I felt like she needed to grow as a character.
- Mackenzie: So Mackenzie wants to go to Julliard, has a backstabbing best friend and is pining for her best friends boyfriend. I didn't really have much of an opinion of Mackenzie, I thought she was 'eh' as a character, not really developed and she didn't really have a compelling story. I thought Blake and Claire were really rude to try and sabotage her, but they were better developed than Mackenzie.
- Ava: On the other hand, I really liked Ava. Her story about her mom saying that she was smarter than what her tests said really warmed my heart. I loved Alex, I thought he was super sweet, and I loved to hate her stepmom. Loved to hate in the book world means that I hated her but she was well developed, and I liked how the author portrayed her. Like a villain well done. Ava was really oblivious when it came to Granger, but I guess she was supposed to be like that. I felt so bad for her when Alex didn't let her explain, although I did kinda agree with him because he's so awesome she should've been honest with him.
- Caitlin: Mmm, Caitlin was so annoying I couldn't stand her. I felt so bad for her about her brother, and I really liked her moms, but something about her just set me off. She was so convinced that she HAD to stay with Josh, just because they were family friends annoyed me. She couldn't grasp that she has to live with her choices, not everyone else. Jeremy was sweet, but I thought he was too nice of a person for Caitlin.
- Julie: Julie was a really likable character, although some things about her were just dumb. She didn't disguise her handwriting, which really annoyed me. HOW CAN YOU WRITE SOMETHING AND EXPECT TO REMAIN ANONYMOUS IF YOU WERE STUPID ENOUGH TO WRITE IN YOUR NORMAL HANDWRITING.?!?!?!?!?!? The stupidity of the human race never fails to amaze me. Moving on, now. The whole hoarding thing with her mom really put me on edge, but that was since I'm a total neat freak. I had goosebumps listening to how disorganized her house was, and it took every ounce of self control to not attempt to dive into the pages and clean EVERYTHING! With the whole Carson and Ashley thing, I'm not sure if Carson was doing that to Julie, or if Ashley tricked him into doing that. It seemed really superficial, though, to stop talking to someone because of SOMETHING THAT CANNOT BE CONTROLLED! One of my problems with Sara Shepard's books is that they are all so superficial, it's annoying. She never really creates deep characters, but instead has a whole universe of Barbies.
- Parker: Parker was probably the closest thing to deep in this book, since she wasn't just stuck on facades. I liked that she wasn't afraid to speak her mind, and was kind of edgy. She understood that there was more to life than being popular because she knew that being popular didn't guarantee perfection. I was completely on her side when she freaked because Elliot was stalking her.
- Nolan: I absolutely hated Nolan's guts by the end of this book. He was such a mean person, although I'm not sure about the fact that he was supposedly going to be valedictorian. People like him usually don't care about grades, but I don't mind that he did care about the grade but not about doing the work. The blackmailing Granger was a good twist, I did like that whole idea. Overall, mildly decent character.
- Granger: First of all, did she have to go with the name Granger. Really, when I hear Granger, the image that comes to mind is Hermione. He was so messed up, I don't really want to talk about him, but he was well done for an antagonist. I was able to predict his death, since that's how Shepard's books usually end.
- Overall Thoughts: I thought this was average, although I'm glad it's a duology and won't go on forever like PLL. I wish she'd attempted to make it a little more different from PLL since there were situations and characters that were practically interchangeable. My only hope for the next book is that the murderer is a character we know, and not some random person introduced in the last 5 pages. I'd probably give this an 83%, decent book but I would like some variation. It's a good storm read, something for rainy days when you have nothing better to do.