Review: Sanctuary Bay by Laura Burns & Melinda Metz

Posted January 18, 2016 by Emily in Review / 1 Comment

Review: Sanctuary Bay by Laura Burns & Melinda MetzSanctuary Bay by Laura J. Burns, Melinda Metz
Published by St. Martin's Griffin on January 19th 2016
Genres: mystery, Young Adult, Thriller
Pages: 320
Format: ebook
Source: Netgalley
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In this genre-bending YA thriller, will Sarah Merson's shiny new prep school change her life forever or bring it to a dark and sinister end?

When Sarah Merson receives the opportunity of a lifetime to attend the most elite prep school in the country-Sanctuary Bay Academy-it seems almost too good to be true. But, after years of bouncing from foster home to foster home, escaping to its tranquil setting, nestled deep in Swans Island, couldn't sound more appealing. Swiftly thrown into a world of privilege and secrets, Sarah quickly realizes finding herself noticed by class charmer, Nate, as well as her roommate's dangerously attentive boyfriend, Ethan, are the least of her worries. When her roommate suddenly goes missing, she finds herself in a race against time, not only to find her, but to save herself and discover the dark truth behind Sanctuary Bay's glossy reputation.

In this genre-bending YA thriller, Sanctuary Bay by Laura J. Burns and Melinda Metz, Sarah's new school may seem like an idyllic temple of learning, but as she unearths years of terrifying history and manipulation, she discovers this "school" is something much more sinister.

I have been avoiding writing this review. The past few days I have done just about everything I can to find something else I should do instead of writing this review. I’ve even left the edit page open on my screen for the last 36 hours. Starring at a blank screen thinking, where do I start.  At one point, days ago, Jamie from Books and Ladders and I were both trying to review this book. She succeeded. I did not.

However, she did volunteer for an endless, thankless job that will incredibly enrich my life. So there’s that.

It was (is) incredibly difficult for me to synthesize this book into a review.

When I started this book, I knew it was a thriller set on an island. I knew it was supposed to be a little scary. Those two things are still fairly true.

I really enjoyed this book until about the 65% mark. The school had secrets that were interesting and made sense. The students made a collective decision that could affect them for the rest of their lives. They made a mistake and had to cover it up. That’s when I decided this was some sort of psychological thriller. I was excited. The characters were interesting and I was looking forward to seeing how they got themselves out of the situation.

The next chapter completely flipped everything. Now that I know, I can see how there few subtle clues of what was going to happen. However, when it happened, I was gobsmacked. It seemed like the book changed directions and genres suddenly and completely. It happened so fast, I was left behind.

The problem with this book was a I really liked the first half. I was interested in the story and I wanted to know how it was going to be solved. Then I felt the resolution just didn’t fit in with the world I was expecting or the world the author created. It almost felt like taking the easy way out. I would love to have read the same book set in the contemporary world. That way they would had to figure out a real world solution to the problems.




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