Truly Devious

Truly Devious

New York Times bestselling author Maureen Johnson weaves a delicate tale of murder and mystery in the first book of a striking new series, perfect for fans of Agatha Christie and E. Lockhart. Ellingham Academy is a famous private school in Vermont for the brightest thinkers, inventors, and artists. It was founded by Albert Ellingham, an early twentieth century tycoon, who...

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Title:Truly Devious
Author:Maureen Johnson
Rating:
Edition Language:English

Truly Devious Reviews

  • Michael

    I didn't know this would have a sequel I AM SHOOK. With most books that switch back and forth between timelines, there is usually one I like more than the other. That wasn't the case here. Between present day and the past, we were presented TWO intriguing murder mysteries to solve. Though I didn't love the conclusion here and felt we weren't exactly given enough clues to solve the present day mystery until the very end, I literally gasped out loud no less than three times while reading, and that

    I didn't know this would have a sequel I AM SHOOK. With most books that switch back and forth between timelines, there is usually one I like more than the other. That wasn't the case here. Between present day and the past, we were presented TWO intriguing murder mysteries to solve. Though I didn't love the conclusion here and felt we weren't exactly given enough clues to solve the present day mystery until the very end, I literally gasped out loud no less than three times while reading, and that's for sure a five star book to me.

  • Stacee

    4.5 stars

    I am a huge true crime fan, so I was all over this story.

    Love love loved Stevie and this cast of characters. She’s smart and maybe a bit odd and socially awkward, but I loved being in her head. The rest of the cast is just as equally intriguing and I immediately didn’t trust anyone.

    Plot wise, it’s captivating. The story is told in two threads: the story of Albert Ellingham, his family, and those events + the current timeline. It was an effective way to get the information without an i

    4.5 stars

    I am a huge true crime fan, so I was all over this story.

    Love love loved Stevie and this cast of characters. She’s smart and maybe a bit odd and socially awkward, but I loved being in her head. The rest of the cast is just as equally intriguing and I immediately didn’t trust anyone.

    Plot wise, it’s captivating. The story is told in two threads: the story of Albert Ellingham, his family, and those events + the current timeline. It was an effective way to get the information without an info dump. The story kept me guessing until the very end, which is when I nearly threw my kindle. Everyone make way for an epic cliffhanger.

    Overall, I enjoyed the story and the characters. My main complaint is the last few pages of the last chapter. I was left throughly unsatisfied and would do horrible things for book two.

    **Huge thanks to Katherine Tegen Books for providing the arc free of charge**

  • Rincey

    3.5 stars. Was a solid 4 star book for me until that ending. Those last few pages will make it or break it for people

  • Laura

    Albert Ellingham created a school that knows no limits. He wanted learning to be a game for those who attended. Tuition is free and everyone learns at their own pace. It's a dream for anyone to attend. Although, shortly after it opened, Ellingham's wife and daughter were kidnapped and never found. A mysterious riddle listing ways to murder had appeared a week prior signed on

    Albert Ellingham created a school that knows no limits. He wanted learning to be a game for those who attended. Tuition is free and everyone learns at their own pace. It's a dream for anyone to attend. Although, shortly after it opened, Ellingham's wife and daughter were kidnapped and never found. A mysterious riddle listing ways to murder had appeared a week prior signed only "Truly, Devious." It remains unsolved.

    Stevie Bell was accepted into Ellingham Academy with no other specialty than being a true-crime junkie. She has plans to solved the great Ellingham mystery that no one before her has been able to. Of course, no one else this adamant as solving the case has had access to the Academy grounds as a student. There's a cast of characters surrounding Stevie, most of which being her housemates. I wasn't exactly feeling a lot of the characters besides Stevie. She's got a good head on her shoulders, is inquisitive and smart. I do wish her anxiety had been displayed better instead of feeling like a passing detail. I spent the majority of the time trusting no one as I waited for the present-day mystery to, well, present itself. It's a little over 50% when we really get introduced to said mystery.

    The story flips back and forth between 1936 when the kidnapping occurs and present day. We don't get enough clues to solve either mystery on our own. At least, as of now that appears to be the case because all is not solved at the end. Things are still up in the air waiting to be solved.

    I prefer my mysteries to have some sort of conclusion, but this book is clearly the first of a series (as of right now, a trilogy). It's setting things up for both mysteries running throughout - one being in present day, the other set in the past in the 1930s - while also introducing us to the series' characters. And, of course, the setting. Also being a bit of a character within the novel as an extension of Albert Ellingham and the kind of person he was loving puzzles and games, so of course the boarding school grounds have hidden nooks, tunnels, hiding spots and is a maze in and of itself.

    I'm torn on if I liked this enough or am more bothered by the way the novels are split up. I would've liked a conclusion here to some extent. Instead, the mystery feels underdeveloped. I think I'll still read the second book because I'm intrigued enough to continue. I'd like to know what happened back in 1936 a bit more than I originally expected. Maybe this would've worked better as a standalone.

  • bran (brandonthebookaddict)

    Hmmmmmm......we'll see...

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