White Rabbit (Caleb Roehig)

Taking place within about a twelve hour period or so, this is a fast-paced thriller with a high body count. Featuring a queer main character and a romance, it’s a fun read. Don’t expect excellent character development (in fact, there’s little beyond Rufus’s own stereotyping of these rich jerks) but it’s refreshing to have a bloody thrill ride with those who seem to deserve their ends getting it…and not have suicide or mental health be the root cause of the story.

The story is set in a town slightly reminiscent of 90210 or any other place saturated with rich and privileged white youngsters. The protagonist, Rufus, lives a much less glamorous life with his mother – trying everything he can to avoid his jerk-of-a-father and his new family. That is until Rufus’s half-sister, April, calls one night and drags him into a murder scene that seems to be her doing. April has something he desperately needs, but first, Rufus has to fill in the missing pieces of that night. This means unraveling the secrets of a group of privileged, messed up kids. Then he has to prove that his sister is innocent (if she is innocent).

To do this in the limited amount of time, he needs the help of his ex-boyfriend, Sebastian, who treated him like a POS and broke his heart. Throughout this short of period of time, Rufus has to deal with his manipulating sister who’s looking guiltier and guiltier by the minute, his ex who insists on discussing their tragically-ended relationship, plus the likelihood of Rufus and his mother losing their house. What first seemed an easy mystery turns out being a thread of a bigger, darker picture, and soon, Rufus is fighting for his life.

Unfortunately, the pieces of this story don’t always fit together naturally. It felt like the author had a really good idea for a mystery and a really good idea for an LGBTQ / romance and decided to just mix them together. There are a lot of flashbacks and enormous 180 degree turns in the romantic story line (though I did enjoy some of the drama there), and the mystery story line isn’t particularity exciting. Characters keep dying and there are few twists and turns. Rufus and Sebastian just keep driving around and talking to the same people over and over, who reveal tiny bits of information each time. I enjoyed the dynamic between the two boys, and I wish there was more Lucy–she is definitely a character who didn’t get near enough page time. But the fast pace and outrageous doings make up for the deficiencies.

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