All Your Twisted Secrets by Diana Urban — ARC Review

All Your Twisted Secrets by Diana UrbanSummary:

This thrilling debut, reminiscent of new fan favorites like One of Us Is Lying and the beloved classics by Agatha Christie, will leave readers guessing until the explosive ending.

Welcome to dinner, and again, congratulations on being selected. Now you must do the selecting.

What do the queen bee, star athlete, valedictorian, stoner, loner, and music geek all have in common? They were all invited to a scholarship dinner, only to discover it’s a trap. Someone has locked them into a room with a bomb, a syringe filled with poison, and a note saying they have an hour to pick someone to kill … or else everyone dies.

Amber Prescott is determined to get her classmates and herself out of the room alive, but that might be easier said than done. No one knows how they’re all connected or who would want them dead. As they retrace the events over the past year that might have triggered their captor’s ultimatum, it becomes clear that everyone is hiding something. And with the clock ticking down, confusion turns into fear, and fear morphs into panic as they race to answer the biggest question: Who will they choose to die?

Review: 4 Stars

I read this book months ago and I picked it up after finishing a long intricate fantasy because I was looking for a fun and fast read. I found All Your Twisted Secrets to be a compelling read and I finished it in less than a day. This book was exactly what I needed after a long fantasy. It you’re looking for a book full of drama that also keeps you up late flipping the pages this book is the perfect choice. All Your Twisted Secrets felt like a mix between The Breakfast Club, and an escape the room game.

The one aspect of this book that I thought was extraordinarily well done was how this book went back and forth from the past and the present. I found myhself all caught up in the drama of the past and then on the edge of my seat during the intense chapters in the present. That style of writing kept the book moving at a fast pace, but it also kept me interested in the story lines. I thought that the alternating chapters between past and present connected to each other really well. As the book went on you slowly understood the relationships of everyone who was locked in the room with the bomb, forced to choose a person to kill or have a bomb go off and kill them all. The chapters from the past almost felt like memories sparked by the tense relationships and moments in the present when they were all locked in together.

I think so much of this novel was done really well and I really liked that bullying and its effects on people was a large theme throughout the story. Diana Urban did a great job creating flawed characters in everyone except the protagonist Amber. Amber was so good hat it was unbelievable. Especially at the end of the story. I really liked all the characters, but I found Amber’s moral superiority annoying. The way she acted almost felt like an after school special where everyone is supposed to learn a lesson. For the most part I could see past her unrealistic perfection, but the ending didn’t feel real to me because of it.

Overall I really loved this book, even though Amber annoyed me at times. It kept me on the edge of my seat and I tore right through the story. This book was pure escapism and I couldn’t even make myself wait until closer to publication to read it. I loved how the story highlighted the way bullying can impact someone even if it felt like the book went a little too far trying to drive the lesson home. This is a great thriller and a perfect read if you’re in a slump or just looking for something fast paced and compelling. Part of me wishes that I had waited to read it just because it’s the type of book that can help get you out of a slump. I was really shocked to find out that this was Diana Urban’s debut novel and I can’t wait to see what she writes next!

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