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Unnatural Deeds
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Unnatural Deeds
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A novel of infatuation and obsession, Unnatural Deeds has an electrifying ending that readers won't see coming.Victoria Zell doesn't fit in, not that she cares what anyone thinks. She and her...
A novel of infatuation and obsession, Unnatural Deeds has an electrifying ending that readers won't see coming.Victoria Zell doesn't fit in, not that she cares what anyone thinks. She and her...
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  • A novel of infatuation and obsession, Unnatural Deeds has an electrifying ending that readers won't see coming.

    Victoria Zell doesn't fit in, not that she cares what anyone thinks. She and her homeschooled boyfriend, Andrew, are inseparable. All they need is each other. That is, until Zachary Zimmerman joins her homeroom. Within an hour of meeting, he convinces good-girl Vic to cut class. And she can't get enough of that rush.

    Despite Vic's loyalty to Andrew, she finds her life slowly entwining with Z's. Soon she's lying to everyone she knows in an effort to unravel Z's secrets. Except Z's not the only one with a past. Victoria's hiding her own secrets, secrets that will come back to haunt her...and destroy everything in her path.

Reviews-

  • Kirkus

    September 15, 2016
    Like a PG-13 version of Gone Girl (2012), Balog's (Dead River, 2013, etc.) latest tells the tense and tragic story of three teens mixed up in a world of murder, obsession, and mental illness. Sixteen-year-old Victoria Zell, a loner suffering from severe anxiety, spends her days feeling trapped at St. Ann's, a Catholic school in Bangor, Maine. Vic wants only to spend time with Andrew, her longtime boyfriend and best friend. Andrew understands her, and like Vic, Andrew suffers from his own debilitating condition: agoraphobia. The two are inseparable--until Zachary "Z" Zimmerman arrives at St. Ann's. Z's arrival spells trouble for Vic as she teeters between her loyalty to the safe and loving Andrew and her desire, bordering on obsession, for Z, who is full of mystery and danger. Vic sometimes reads as a naive Catholic schoolgirl, a familiar stereotype, but her account, addressed to Andrew with each chapter preceded by police interviews, news updates, and coroner's reports, is nevertheless a compelling one. The portrayal of mental illness seems authentic, but readers should recognize that Vic is entangled in a web of unhealthy relationships, especially with Z, who treats her like a puppy. Vic is white, with "stick-straight beige hair," the charismatic Z has tan skin, golden hair, and blue eyes, and Andrew's race is unclear. A page-turner that will keep readers riveted, this is a treat for mystery fans and will keep readers guessing right up until the end. (Thriller. 14-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2016) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    November 1, 2016

    Gr 6 Up-The latest from YA novelist Balog, this fast contemporary title takes readers on a dark journey through mental illness and murder. Victoria narrates the story to her best friend and boyfriend Andrew, who is her agoraphobic, homeschooled neighbor of seven years. She wrestles with her guilt, though, after finding herself drawn to new student Z. Secrets and well-placed clues shape the suspenseful plot, which balances Vic's relatable questions about romance with true crime suspense surrounding a missing person. Police reports, interrogations, and newspaper articles about the crime begin each chapter and offer a refreshing change of writing style while foreshadowing the tale's climax. Vic's psychological struggle culminates in an unpredictable, shocking ending that most readers will not see coming. This thriller will stay with readers long after the last page. VERDICT A good choice for teens who are dealing with the loss of a friend. A strong purchase for YA thriller collections.-Seth Herchenbach, McHenry County College, Crystal Lake, IL

    Copyright 2016 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • School Library Journal "Vic's psychological struggle culminates in an unpredictable, shocking ending that most readers will not see coming. This thriller will stay with readers long after the last page.""
  • Natalie D. Richards, author of Six Months Later and One Was Lost "Unnatural Deeds is a compelling, dark confessional with pages that  keep you guessing and an ending that will blow you sideways.
    "
  • Manhattan Book Review "Readers who enjoyed Need by Joelle Charbonneau or The Killer in Me by Margot Harrison will find this horrific mystery perfectly explosive–this one will require a late night."

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