I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Copycat by Hannah Jayne
Published by Sourcebooks Fire on July 3, 2018
Everyone is dying to read the latest book in the popular Gap Lake mystery series, and Addison is no exception. As the novels biggest fan, Addison is flattered when the infamously reclusive author, R.J. Rosen, contacts her, granting her inside information others would kill for. But when the most popular girl in Addison's high school is murdered, Addison can't help but think that life may be imitating fiction. And as other terrifying events from the book start happening around her, Addison has to figure out how to write her own ending -and survive the story.
Addison is 100% obsessed with the book series Gap Lake: a twisty, soap opera-esque trail through a summer camp, stalked by Michael Meyers’ younger, less cute brother. Teen slasher film: the book series, essentially. Addie is deeply invested in Gap Lake, and runs the most popular fan site (GapLakeLove – snappy title there Adds), writing fan fiction and theorizing with her friends and followers about what plot points might come next. And then, one day, it all goes to hell.
I had such high hopes for this book. Its premise is unique and very interesting, especially for a book written for 15-16 year olds. It’s fast-paced, snappy, and I honestly didn’t see 100% of the twist coming. But that wasn’t, unfortunately, enough to save it from the depths of Gap Lake.
How I’d Describe This Book to A Friend
One day, Addie receives an email from the author of Gap Lake, RJ Rosen. She is elated to discover that RJ has stumbled upon her website and loves what she is doing, how she’s engaging with the fans. And even better, he wants her to help host a blog tour for his upcoming new release! He sends her a chapter to post, and Addison excitedly obeys, gushing to her best friend Maya (whose parents are both cops, a fact that will be drilled into your head at least 10-12 times during your tenure in this book) about how lucky she is! Maya, meanwhile, just wants Addie to find an actual boyfriend and crawl out of the shadows to get some sun. Not happening.
Addie receives a message from RJ Rosen one day after school, telling her there is a surprise in store for her. Addie, who could not get more excited if she tried, careens into the journalism room with Maya, talking about how amazing this opportunity is. Sitting there, folded into a desk with her head on her hands, smelling faintly of standing water and very much not alive, is the star cheerleader: Lydia.
Some surprise, huh?
It takes off from there – Addie realizes that this murder is very reminiscent of the plot of a Gap Lake novel – unfortunately, everyone is so tired of her babbling about Gap Lake that nobody wants to listen. Good thing Maya’s parents are cops you guys! Except they don’t wanna hear it either. RJ Rosen becomes creepier and creepier, and Addie struggles against time and this faceless killer to unmask him before another life is taken – namely, her own.
Unfortunately, the last 15% or so of this book manages to go off the rails, and not in a fun way. Things wrap up in too neat, too perfect a little bow for such an epic shitstorm of a situation Addison, her friends and family have gotten into. Were it not for that, I’d have really enjoyed this book.
The Bottom Line
Addison is lovable, though neurotic and a little bit paranoid (understandably). Maya is a force to be reckoned with, and I really enjoyed her snappy comebacks and personality shining through. Everyone else just sort of exists, as a love interest or a disinterested parent. As I said above, this would all be forgivable were it not for this utter disaster of a final 15%. I had such high hopes for you, Copycat – you were so close!
But at least Maya’s parents are cops, so it’s not a total loss.