Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

You'll Be the Death of Me

Rate this book
Ivy, Mateo, and Cal used to be close. Now all they have in common is Carlton High and the beginning of a very bad day.

Type A Ivy lost a student council election to the class clown, and now she has to face the school, humiliated. Heartthrob Mateo is burned out--he's been working two jobs since his family's business failed. And outsider Cal just got stood up.... again.

So when Cal pulls into campus late for class and runs into Ivy and Mateo, it seems like the perfect opportunity to turn a bad day around. They'll ditch and go into the city. Just the three of them, like old times. Except they've barely left the parking lot before they run out of things to say...

Until they spot another Carlton High student skipping school--and follow him to the scene of his own murder. In one chance move, their day turns from dull to deadly. And it's about to get worse.

It turns out Ivy, Mateo, and Cal still have some things in common. They all have a connection to the dead kid. And they're all hiding something.

Now they're all wondering--could it be that their chance reconnection wasn't by chance after all?

From the author of One of Us Is Lying comes a brand-new pulse-pounding thriller. It's Ferris Bueller's Day Off with murder when three old friends relive an epic ditch day, and it goes horribly--and fatally--wrong.

336 pages, Hardcover

First published November 30, 2021

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Karen M. McManus

22 books27.6k followers
Hi, and thanks for stopping by my Goodreads page! I don't visit this site often, so the best way to reach me is via my website at www.karenmcmanus.com, or on Twitter/Instagram, where I'm @writerkmc.


Karen M. McManus is a #1 New York Times and international bestselling author of young adult thrillers. Her work includes the One of Us Is Lying series, which was turned into a television show on Peacock and Netflix, as well as the standalone novels Two Can Keep a Secret, The Cousins, You’ll Be the Death of Me, and Nothing More to Tell. Karen's critically acclaimed, award-winning books have been translated into forty-two languages and have sold more than seven million copies worldwide.

To learn more, visit www.karenmcmanus.com or @writerkmc on Twitter and Instagram.

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
10,711 (20%)
4 stars
21,481 (41%)
3 stars
16,224 (31%)
2 stars
3,060 (5%)
1 star
461 (<1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 6,137 reviews
Profile Image for liv.
134 reviews8 followers
Currently reading
May 31, 2023
might as well give karen m.mcmanus my card details cause she knows i’m buying every book she publishes
Profile Image for megs_bookrack.
1,538 reviews9,831 followers
May 29, 2023

After high-strung teenager, Ivy, loses the student council election at Carlton High to the class clown, Boney Mahoney, she's horrified. How could this happen?!

The following day, Boney is supposed to be giving a speech addressing the school, thanking them for his victory.

Ughhhh, Ivy can't face that.

Luckily, that morning she runs into her two estranged best friends, Cal and Mateo, in the parking lot before class and the three decide to skip school together and head into Boston for the day.

In a way, they are hoping to recreate the 'best day ever', a day they skipped school together and went into the city that happened to coincide with a celebration parade after the Red Sox had won the World Series.

But in truth, they're all just hoping for an escape. A way to avoid facing all the things that are bringing them down.

When they get into the city though, Ivy spies Boney! What is he doing skipping out on his speech?

She sees red and decides to follow him, with the hopes of an epic confrontation. However, what she gets instead is the honor of stumbling upon a crime scene with a newly murdered body.

From that point forward, their potential best day ever turns into the craziest day ever as the trio attempt to avoid the cops, the media, the killer and suspicion. Oh yeah, they're also hoping to solve the crime.

Taking place over the course of a single-day, this is a fun story, but I gotta say, probably my least favorite out of all of McManus' prior works.

I can't really put my finger on what it was about this one that didn't vibe with me. Perhaps I just built it up so much in my head, anticipating it for so long, that it was destined to disappoint.

If I had to point to any one thing, I think the mystery just wasn't compelling for me. I didn't feel invested in it at all.

I did enjoy Ivy, Mateo and Cal; learning about their friendship, what drove them apart and their current woes. I found them to be interesting, just not the crime itself.

Regardless, the ending did have McManus' signature final twist, which I always appreciate and because of that, I was leaning toward rounding this up to 4-stars, but have decided that just wasn't enough.

With all of this being said, this is still a fun book. I think it will work for a ton of Readers and would be a great introduction to the YA Mystery genre. If you've read all of McManus' other books, however, this one could seem lackluster in comparison.

Overall, McManus is an autobuy author for me and I will continue to pick up everything she writes.

Even though this isn't my favorite of hers, I will still proudly display it on my shelves!!!
Profile Image for Ayman.
202 reviews76.7k followers
December 2, 2021
another karen m. mcmanus book i thoroughly enjoyed. the climax? the suspense? the plot? all well written. fast pace books are something i crave and reading this book gave me just that. the twist and turns; another thing i could not predict. i love the characters and the thrill i got. definitely would recommend for anyone that's looking for that heart thumping experience!
Profile Image for jessica.
2,535 reviews32.6k followers
December 3, 2021
a fast-paced, easy read that answers the question, “what is ferris buellers day off involved a murder?”

KMM has already done a ‘breakfast club’ murder mystery, so it was about time she tried another 80s classic. and i think this one works. the dynamic of old friends who lost touch with each other but are now forced to work with each other makes for an interesting read as all of their secrets slowly come to light during an intense day of ditching school.

the main thing preventing me from enjoying this more is the motive/reason behind the murder. its just so… bland. i personally dont enjoy mysteries that revolve around because i find it too common. it just just doesnt have the wow factor i want when it comes to a murder mystery.

but personal preferences aside, i can admit that this is a fun addition to KMMs bibliography.

3.5 stars
Profile Image for Chelsea Humphrey.
1,440 reviews78.1k followers
November 23, 2022
"It takes less than 15 minutes for me to realize this was a huge mistake."

My relationship with Karen McManus's books remains intact; I seem to enjoy her series more than her stand alone novels, although I might be getting to the point where I need a little more than the same formula from her from here on out. Don't get me wrong, I love a good YA mystery as much as the next person, but eventually we have to switch up the characters and their actions at exact moments in each book for things to feel fresh and new. This particular tale felt divided into two stark parts: the slow moving part one and the twist filled part two. While the ending had a lot going for it, it takes so long to sludge through the random, daily interactions that I feel are supposed to be red herrings, that I *almost* didn't care to finish it by 50% in. That said, I'm glad I pushed through, because part two? Man! Talk about not knowing where it was going. If you're a fan of the author, I definitely think you should give this one a try, and I'm hoping in the future maybe we will see something a little darker and more mature from McManus.

*Many thanks to the publisher for providing my review copy.
Profile Image for Elle.
587 reviews1,317 followers
December 1, 2021
Hmm I’m not exactly sure what I was expecting, but I was definitely hoping for something a little more….thrilling? I mean, check that synopsis—”Ferris Bueller's Day Off with murder”. How could you *not* get excited with that description?

Like all McManus books, there’s a handful walking stereotypes students who end up thrown together in some sort of deadly situation. The hook here is that these three, Ivy, Mateo and Cal, are based off of the characters from the famous 80’s movie. They ditch school one day and through a sequence of terrible events end up in the immediate vicinity of a recently committed murder. And because they are teenagers and thriller protagonists, they do not go to the authorities (or their parents) for help and decide to try and solve it on their own.

I would be lying if I said it didn’t take me a while to get into this. The first half of the book was a lot of them just walking around. Getting donuts, sitting in the car, waiting in empty buildings, etc. The pacing picked up for me in the back half, but it still never reached what I think its full potential could have been. This might have something to do with the twists and the way they were revealed. Though some of the information we’re fed in the first part was a surprise, most of it didn’t seem to matter in the grand scheme of things. By comparison the plot twists at the climax of the book were executed so well that they left me reeling. I didn’t see them coming until they were nearly on top of me.

But what is a thriller if you’re only thrilled for a fraction of the story? Even after all the big reveals, when the bad guys are unmasked and taken away, it dragged for me. Those after pages, the length of the book after the final climax/resolution, were way too long and explanatory. We don’t need five additional full-length chapters gift wrapping the ending for us.

The Cousins seemed to have a similar problem, although the slower pacing of that one made a little more sense with the tone of that book. There just has been very little action in her last two YA thrillers, and the only standalone of hers I really enjoyed was Two Can Keep a Secret. Obviously the author of One of Us Is Lying, a book that’s still on bestseller lists years after publication, is not in danger of ever not making money through writing. But with the announcement that her sixth novel is going to be another sequel to her runaway hit, I’m wondering if she’s doubling back to that familiar ground as a way to try and catch some of the initial energy that her earlier books contained.

If McManus is feeling a little uninspired by YA high school dramas, I feel like this would be a good time to pivot into New Adult territory. A lot of what she seems to want to do with her characters falls outside of this format she keeps going back to. Characters in college or their early-mid twenties might end up being a better fit. The way that You’ll Be the Death of Me played out, especially with minors being involved, felt very contrived. We’re beyond suspending disbelief at this point—because just about every major plot detail in this book would not be in the realm of possibility for teenagers.

And if I could get into a couple specific things: And I just realized I’m not going to have anyone to complain I about this with until December.🧍‍♀️

I do want her to keep writing, and I’m going to keep reading what she puts out because even her ‘less good’ material still a slump-buster for me. But there needs to be a shakeup after One of Us Is Back, because this is just not at the level she was a couple of years ago. Either someone on her team needs to keep pushing her in the drafting process or maybe put some more time between each release. I’d rather wait an extra six months for something spectacular from her if that’s what it takes.

*Thanks to Delacorte Press, Get Underlined & Netgalley for an advance review copy!

**For more book talk & reviews, follow me on Instagram at @elle_mentbooks!
Profile Image for Baba.
3,563 reviews862 followers
November 1, 2022
Ivy (rich parents, but living in the shadow of all-round genius younger brother), Cal (an outlier with very few friends if any) and Mateo (dark and brooding, but now working three jobs to help support his ill single mother, who recently loss her business) used to be best friends in their very early teens, and recall their highlight, the greatest day ever when they skipped school together. Circumstances pull these three together on a skip school day again, only this day ends in murder, with one of the as the prime person of interest!

...and yes, there's certainly more to this story, much more. This is yet another top-drawer Young Adult 21st century American mystery + romance thriller by Karen M. McManus who has the ability to take the trivialities of modern (middle to upper class) mostly White suburban senior year in high school life mix it up with crime (usually murder) and a 'will-they won't-they' romance and make it interesting reading, usually with a core mystery that keeps me transfixed all the way through! This is a prime example, and in my opinion one of her best efforts. 8 out of 12.

2022 read
Profile Image for ☀︎El In Oz☀︎.
532 reviews333 followers
July 4, 2022

This book definitely is Karen M McManus’ worst. It’s not necessarily a bad book, it just lacks the usual suspense, romance, and well developed characters her other books have. And I think it’s pretty obvious why that’s the case.

This book takes place over the course of a single day. One. The last chapters take place after of course but most of this book is an hour by hour account of what happens. And at first I thought this would make for a high stake and quickly paced plot, but it was really really slow. I know Karen can write slow books that still have good plot twists and keep you engaged (The Cousins) so this disappointed me.

I think overall the plot was lacking. Spoilers, the main plot of this book follows the death of a student because he deals drugs, and it’s all about who the main drug lord is, who ordered the victim, named Boney, to be killed, and stuff like that. Which wasn’t my jam. I prefer murders for revenge or romance or literally any other reason.

I guess another issue is there are so few characters and character development in this book. Of course there are important events in their lives but it’s still one day. It’s not as well done as development over the course of weeks or a month or two. We mostly stay with just the trio for the entire book, plus their families and a few others, so it brings the possible suspects down to a very short list. There were some sub plots, mostly family related drama, that was annoying and only took away from the main plot, which already was struggling to find it’s way through this book.

The POV’s weren’t good. They were too similar, all the time I was confused who I was reading from, which is sad because usually Karen’s books have distinctive voices. The romance was awful, again because this takes place over the course of one day, and it just really didn’t have the same dynamics as her other books.

Ivy was super annoying. I just couldn’t care for her. She seemed too self centred, did the most infuriating things, and her internal monologue was extremely annoying.
Mateo wasn’t much better. He has lots of family based monologue which made his POV’s usually drag on and on.
I guess Cal was somewhat bearable but the fact he was in love with his art teacher made his POV overly naïve and such. Obviously it wasn’t his fault (I hate that teacher) but his POV made excuses for her actions far too many times.

And I guess my lack of enjoyment came from the fact I just didn’t get sucked into it or feel the stakes. I think when a mystery takes place over weeks, the dread and guilt and takes grow higher as the characters slowly learn more and get threats or whatever it may be. Here it was very linear in what happens which wasn’t all and but bored me.

I guess how the mystery was resolved and all was good, I just felt it was very anti climactic. Like I said when you already know the motive and there isn’t any motive twist (or who did it twist, as someone obviously was going something wrong) it isn’t as fun. There wasn’t as much information to go off on to make theories myself. I definitely think her other books excel at giving just enough information over the course of days. Obviously the format of this book doesn’t allow that.

Overall this is my least favourite of Karen M McManus’ books yet but I know as this is only one out of 5 published books I disliked, I still have faith in her future mysteries which I will read!
Profile Image for Josu Diamond.
Author 9 books33k followers
August 16, 2022
Una thriller que entremezcla el misterio con la amistad.

Me encantan los libros de Karen M. McManus. Todos en general tienen algo que los define: una narración deliciosa y un talento por el manejo del tiempo. Creo que, concretamente en esta obra, la autora brilla en esto segundo, ya que todo sucede en un mismo día.

Lo que más me ha sorprendido de Tú serás mi muerte ha sido sin duda que el foco no es tanto el misterio, sino cómo solucionarlo, las aventuras que lxs amigxs reunidxs después de tanto tiempo pasan, recuperar el tiempo perdido, el valor de la amistad y la familia. Sí, sé que suena un poco pasteloso –y odio ese tipo de cosas–, pero creedme que no lo es en absoluto. Cuando he cerrado el libro, la sensación que se me ha quedado es la de que es demasiado corto, de que necesito saber más de los personajes.


Este es un thriller de personajes. El misterio, aunque es importante y tiene sus subtramas, creo que es algo secundario. Lo que realmente marca la novela y la hace diferente (y lo que engancha, por lo menos a mí), es la relación de los personajes principales: Cal, Ivy y Mateo. Compartieron una amistad preciosa en el pasado y ahora el destino les ha vuelto a juntar. Se guardan secretos entre ellxs, pero no importa, porque tienen algo más importante en lo que centrarse: la muerte de un compañero del instituto.

Es un libro ágil y entretenido, con unos personajes muy bien definidos. Continuamente me encontraba a mí mismo queriendo saber más de sus familias, de cómo se iban a tomar lo que estaba pasando o cómo solventarían los problemas que tenían con ella. Y como digo, es una sorpresa ya que no dejamos de estar ante una novela de misterio, pero creo que la autora ha hecho muy bien trabajo en presentar de esta forma las consecuencias de los actos en vez de los actos en sí.

Sin embargo, una cosa que me pasa con McManus es que siento que los desenlaces se quedan a veces un poquito flojos. Son misterios, quizá, demasiado cotidianos. Aun y todo, se lo perdono en esta obra porque creo que puede tener una continuación y porque el foco, insisto, siento que no está realmente en eso, sino en cómo se desarrollan Cal, Ivy y Mateo.


Algo que me ha sacado un poquito de la lectura es la traducción de algunas frases, pero por lo demás, genial en ese aspecto.

Tú serás mi muerte se mete de lleno en el top de mis libros preferidos de Karen M. McManus: un misterio de estar por casa con unos personajes muy reales que hacen todo lo posible por mantenerse a flote. Me ha atrapado como ningún otro libro de la autora me ha atrapado. Y ahora, a esperar a octubre, donde tendremos un nuevo libro de la autora en España. ¡Deseando leerlo!
Profile Image for PAIGE.
223 reviews61 followers
July 24, 2022

edit (07/23/22): i originally rated this 4 stars because of the hyped feeling that the ending had, and even though the book gave me all that john-hughes-murder-mystery-goodness, it's realistically a 3 star book.
April 16, 2023
You’ll Be the Death of Me is exactly what I needed it to be… until it wasn't anymore.

Sounds bitchy, I know, but let me explain: I started this book with an attitude and a serious lack of interest in reading, watching anything, couldn't even sleep. But then I forced myself because I don't want to be behind in my reading challenge when exam season will begin and then it struck me: this book was the perfect solution for my mood.
First chapter, we meet Ivy and I like it. Second chapter, Mateo’s life sucks and I'm interested. Third chapter, Cal starts this adventure and there’s no way I’ll put this book down until I’ll figure out what's going on.

A very important pro in all of this is the relationship between the main characters.
I’ve watched the television transposition of KMM’s One of Us is Lying, so I wasn't totally estranged from the possible scenarios and variety of characters. This is way less Breakfast Club and more Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, but with murder.
Anyway, Ivy, Cal and Mateo knew each other very well, but before high school began they stopped talking; now, they have to work together or every one of them will have to deal with something worse than a detention.

A very important con is the motive, though: I’ll spend all book long questioning every single detail to try to figure out who might have done what, so I'm not particularly happy when the motive behind whatever might have happened is something stupid or worse, boring.
I'm not a mystery/thriller type of girl so when I read one, I expect it to be good. I wanna gasp at the final revelation, I wanna find a good reason that explains everything that had happened until then, and I don't want to question the thing any further when I close the book. If you wanna kill someone, you better have a cool reason.

KMM’stories prior internal monologues over everything else, she has to do so since she likes to tell the stories from the povs of the different characters. But while others authors are not so good with them, she has perfectioned the right balance between going insane due to the situation and being sure the world isn't burnt into flames in the meantime.
I like her narrative style, I like how she has me doubting every piece of information, how she builds the thrill of getting to know the truth, and how she puts everything together at the end.

Also, predictable but likeable, there’s no end to the story.
The characters are friends again, the bad guy is in prison, and life is better than it has always been. But why is it the ending? Ivy, Cal and Mateo aren't dead, they’ll continue to live even if we stop reading.
So KMM leaves kind of an open ending: the big problem is solved but now there's another one they’ll have to deal with.

3.5 stars
Profile Image for Charlotte May.
696 reviews1,074 followers
April 22, 2022
My obsession with Karen McManus’ books continues.

3 old friends who have fallen out of touch find themselves thrown back together in the worst of circumstances. When they all choose to skip school together and head into the city, they don’t bank on seeing another school mate there - a school mate who five minutes later ends up dead.

With Karen McManus’ signature addictive writing and secrets upon secrets, I couldn’t flip the pages fast enough. Her characters are all flawed and relatable, I enjoyed watching them unravel everything and sometimes even having to fight for their lives.

As usual - I will pick up anything and everything this author writes.
Profile Image for Rachel  L.
1,828 reviews2,189 followers
March 9, 2022
3 stars

I don’t know what it is about Karen M McManus, but I’ll read any book she writes. Even though I think at this point, I’ve disliked more than I’ve enjoyed by her.

Three former friends randomly decide to skip school one day, each of them not wanting to face what the school day has to offer. While out, they spot another student skipping school and follow him into an abandoned building, and then shortly discover his dead body. Now faced with being a the wrong place wrong time, they scramble to figure out what happened and who did it.

I thought this book was okay, I enjoyed it for the most part. I listened to the audiobook and all three narrators did a great job. I thought the story was a bit far fetched and a little bit… lazy? I thought everything relied too much on coincidence rather than actual possibility. I did like the main character and their different stories so that’s why I gave this book a three and not a two star rating. But I am wondering where all of this author’s magic has gone since her first book.
Profile Image for Melissa (Catch Up Mode).
4,574 reviews1,881 followers
September 26, 2022
Listened to the multi-narrator audio version of this book, which is a fantastic way to experience it.

Overall, this is a decent YA mystery, but nothing especially groundbreaking or memorable. The premise is interesting--three high school students who were friends when they were younger decide to skip school one day. They end up witnessing the death of another one of their classmates and others think they are possibly involved.

It's a little predictable, but the teen characters are endearing and interesting. There are some storylines about drug trafficking and there's a decent twist in the end. If you like YA mysteries, you can't go wrong with Karen McManus, and the audiobook is a great choice.
Profile Image for Blake.
27 reviews
May 9, 2020
Inject this straight into my eyeballs please
Profile Image for Avery (Taylor's version).
205 reviews293 followers
December 20, 2022
“You can be right in principle and still wrong in approach.”

So going into this book my expectations weren't too high since it's just a simple little murder mystery and I'm glad I wasn't expecting much because I would've been so mad. I read One of Us is Lying by this author and I quite enjoyed it, despite the fact that I quickly guessed who the murderer was and got it right.

I was meh about this book throughout the entire thing until the end, where it actually got interesting. But we'll talk more about that.

The Plot

The plot was okay, but in the beginning it seemed really....convenient. What a coincidence that three ex-best friends miraculously show up at the same spot at the same time. Sure, stuff was being revealed, but I didn't care much about it since there weren't really any suspects, though I did like the little twists that were being played out along the way.

I also didn't like what the mystery was revolving around.

Some plot points sure were interesting to read about, though one of them had me a little (a lot) weirded out.

Though I must admit, I really liked the plot twists, I just didn't like that they were revealed over halfway through the book, because then it just made the beginning a tad boring. But what do I know anymore.

The Characters

And this is where it all fell down. I cared about zero of the characters which dampened my enjoyment because when I'm reading I want to love the characters and care about what's happening but I didn't care at all. Ivy was annoying and made me want to scream (especially when she revealed what she did to Mateo- I was literally laughing when she revealed it, don't ask me why), I liked Cal until I realized what he was doing, though technically he was being manipulated, but still, and Mateo was my favorite but again, I didn't care enough.

My least favorite's definitely Ivy, I don't know why, but she was annoying me. So. Much. She was rude to her brother (who I know I shouldn't like because he's a jerk but I liked him better than Ivy), she did what she did to Mateo's family, and she was really whiny and judgy at some points and I just really dislike her.

I liked Cal with his sense of humor and personality and I do feel bad about what happened to him but he shouldn't have gotten involved in that in the first place because that's a whole 'nother issue.

I enjoyed Mateo's character decently enough, but he's only slightly better than Cal. I loved when he told Ivy off and said all of those bad things to her which is kinda not a good thing but yeah. He's caring and protective of his family, which I appreciate and admire.

The Friendships and Unneeded Romance

I did like the friendships of the main characters, though they did get into many little skirmishes.

And now here's the thing: I love romance in books and I typically NEED some sort of romance in the books I read, but I really didn't want one in this one. I hate romance in murder mystery books but it always distracts from the mystery at hand which I despise, because I just want them to figure out the mystery and all that.

The only exception is Pip and Ravi from A Good Girl's Guide to Murder because I love both of them and they've got great chemistry. I might've liked the romance in this if I'd actually cared about the characters but I didn't. And it annoyed me so much because Ivy only cared about Mateo at some points and completely left out Cal, who also thought that Ivy didn't care about what he himself did when Mateo was right there.

But anyways, I liked the friendship but hated the romance.

So this was just a little thing for me to read and it was decent enough. I liked the mystery at the end and some of the plot twists but I didn't like the romance.

3 stars

“Silence falls as we get lost in our own regrets.”

The end saved this book

Profile Image for Lucy Tonks.
488 reviews717 followers
June 17, 2022
DNF-ed at page 178
I just can't do it. I can't believe I actually paid money to get this shit. It's so bad on so many different levels. How did this get published?! I don't understand. Somehow I don't think I've read a book this bad in so long and I've read some pretty bad books.
Profile Image for Matthew.
1,219 reviews8,839 followers
June 16, 2022
Ah, you know what you are going to be getting with McManus; always a teen drama/mystery with lots of cheese that reads like a scripts for a teen drama TV show (uh, I only know about that because my wife watches those . . . uh, yeah . . . that’s it!) But, while you know what you are getting, you can never be sure if you are getting something good or something mediocre. McManus has been up and down for me after reading a few of her other books. So, how did this one stack up?

I am going to go 4 stars, but I want to stress that through a lot of it I was leaning heavily towards three and, at times, even two.

The book starts off well, but the middle is mired in unbelievable plot twists and confusing dialogue. The reason that it ramped back up to 4 after the middle is that there was an a-ha moment near the climax of the story that actually made me vocalize “OH DANG!” and from that point on I was back into it. When I have a physical or vocal reaction to a book, it gets a star back!

Should you read it?

Do you like McManus’ other works? Do you enjoy teen drama TV shows? Do you ask for extra cheese on your pizza? Yes, you should

Do you not like books with a lot of cheese, unbelievable twists, and convoluted dialogue that might make it difficult to stay focused through the middle of the book? Then you should proceed with caution!
Profile Image for Avani ✨.
1,590 reviews330 followers
January 16, 2022
Karen M McManus, known for her thrilling murder mystery plots and excellent choice of characters amongst them, You'll Be The Death of Me is another well plotted book by the author.

Our three main characters - Ivy, Mateo, Cal find themselves stuck between the murder of a fourth high school student who, they three know at individual level. Although the plot was very well articulated, I felt the characters could have been better.

In terms of plot and characters, I would also want the author to experiment and bring something new to the table. There was a lot of predictions as well as cliché plot twists in the book. A definite one time catchy read for me, which I will read once and end up forgetting by the end.
March 17, 2022
This was a buddy read with my grandson. It was cute, not great, but we had some nice discussions.

High School students Ivy, Mateo,and Cal were once best buds but a black cat crossed their paths and since middle school they haven't spoken - that is, until Ivy lost her bid for class pres when the biggest jerk in her class managed to garner enough votes resulting in her humiliating defeat.

When the three meet up in the parking lot of school the day the winner is to be announced, they decide to band together and skip school, each for their own reason. When they discover the newly elected class president dead on the floor of an abandoned building (he clearly skipped too), the three of them find themselves in an awkward position which gets more and more complicated as the hours pass.

In the space of just a few hours, secrets are exposed, as are feelings of anger and disappointment while the three buds, with the aid of a few others, solve the mystery of their classmate's death and resolve some past issues. Wrongs are righted and everyone (probably) lives happily ever after.

The book deals with drug trafficking and inappropriate teacher student relationships - but not on a gritty or graphic level.
Profile Image for Dannii Elle.
2,034 reviews1,421 followers
December 16, 2022
Ivy, Mateo, and Cal used to be best friends but time and age have driven them apart. Their attempts to rekindle what they once had, as they ditch school together, quickly die and awkwardness sets in. When they run into another truant they latch on to him as a way to turn their day around. Discovering a murder together wasn't quite what they had in mind in order to do so, though.

I can always rely on McManus to deliver a solid YA thriller. This proved just as fun and furiously fast-paced, as chocked full of secrets and of sinister discoveries, as all the titles I have previously read from her. The characters also appeared as initially cliched before becoming unique and nuanced as their true selves became exposed. I had no faults with this story and a blast working through the puzzles it presented.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to the author, Karen M. McManus, and the publisher, Penguin, for this opportunity.
Profile Image for Christina Pilkington.
1,489 reviews147 followers
January 6, 2022
I'm so disappointed that I didn't like this book more! And it's my first read of 2022 :(

This is my third book by the author, and while her books have never been my favorite, I usually have a fun time reading them. But in You'll Be the Death of Me, I had so many issues with the plot and mystery elements of this story that I just couldn't overlook.

My main issue is that most of this book reads like a contemporary. McManus is good at crafting teen characters and creating friend groups. All three main characters have great backstories, are fully fleshed out, and their interactions and dialogue between each other are compelling and interesting.

However, most of the plot of this book is focused on things that have taken place in the past that have caused this group of friends to have a falling out. This book is all about realizing their past mistakes and coming back together as friends once again.

The mystery element isn't even a major focus of the book until the last five or so chapters. And the ending is absolutely absurd and comes out of left field! It's clearly set up that way to make it possible for a sequel to happen. Also, there is a relationship between an older and younger character that feels so unrealistic.

If the mystery was removed from this story and it had focused more on this group of friends and their interpersonal relationships, it would have been a stronger book for me.

If you'd like to read a book by this author, I'd recommend The Cousins and pass on this one. Even the One of US is Lying series is better.
Profile Image for Henri Purnell.
22 reviews277 followers
December 5, 2021
McManus did it again. I couldn‘t put this one down. Didn‘t see the last pages coming. Overall loved the book so much!
Profile Image for kimberly ☆.
210 reviews3,385 followers
December 4, 2021
thank you so much delacorte press for this ARC!

4/5 stars

ooop! this was an extremely quick read, and a nice surprise! now i was expecting a lot from miss karen because she wrote one of us is lying, and it was one of my favorite books when it dropped. and i’m just gonna say that she did not disappoint. this book is easy to follow, and the twists and turns it takes are truly captivating. i really loved the climax and how we found out who it was. All the point of use were pretty easy to follow, it wasn't and jumpy or skippy. i really liked the cute romance we got it’s adorable, this is one of my favorite genres of books mystery and romance and this book gave what needed to be given, and i’m really really happy i got the chance to read it!
Profile Image for JasonA.
294 reviews54 followers
January 13, 2022
If you're a Karen McManus fan, then you're probably going to like this book; I am, and I did. I will say that it's not my favorite book of hers, but I did enjoy it. I can't put my finger on what it is, but it feels like something is missing from this book. That and the open ending were really my only issues with the book.

I think I'd have liked to see the group re-establish their friendship for a little longer before the shit hits the fan. Maybe that's what was missing? These were old friends who grew apart, but then fell right back into the rhythms of their friendship. I really think it would have helped to see this process drawn out a bit more. As it is now, it's kind of hard to believe that they'd all stop hanging out since their connection seems so strong and they fall back into it so fast.

These are more or less nitpicks since they don't have any major effect on the book. I wouldn't recommend this as your first McManus book (read One of Us is Lying, in that case), but still a good read.
Profile Image for Marci.
418 reviews151 followers
January 11, 2022
I enjoyed the Ferris Bueller's Day Off aspect of this and I was mostly invested in the characters and their relationships with each other but the mystery was a bit of a letdown. It got more exciting towards the end of the book and I loved the twisted final few pages but all in all I didn't love this one. It felt a little lackluster. Still entertaining though! I was sooooo excited for this one and went into it with such high expectations which might be why I didn't love this as much as I had hoped to.🤔 I was still shook and surprised with the reveals though...so yay!!! Love that. 😌🤭
Profile Image for Chelsea | thrillerbookbabe.
507 reviews628 followers
November 4, 2021
Three friends who have grown apart. A chance to reconnect. A ditch day gone horribly wrong. Thank you to Delacorte Press and Karen McManus for my ARC of this book that comes out on November 30, 2021. In Karen McManus’s You’ll Be The Death of Me, three high school seniors reconnect after years of living their own lives.

Ivy, the smart and driven runner up for class President feels like she will never be as good as her younger brother. He is smart but a slacker and Ivy feels like she’s always having to prove herself. Mateo is your typical high school heartthrob, with good looks and a charming personality. He is also working two jobs to take care of his sick mom and try to support his family. Then there is Cal, a friendless outsider who wants to go back and relive one of the best days of his life. When he sees his chance, he drives the trio to Boston for a ditch day.

But this isn’t just any ditch day, but a day that begins with witnessing a murder. Is it a case of the wrong place at the wrong time, or do these three have something to hide? What follows is a frantic chase to find out what happened in the abandoned warehouse and to find out who is responsible. But everyone has secrets, and sooner or later, those secrets will come out.

Thoughts: In a similar format to her other books, You’ll Be The Death of Me switches between three perspectives to tell the story. In her signature fun YA plot style, McManus slowly shares details through each of the three narrators. I enjoyed that she wrote each character in a distinctive way and made them each individually relatable. The reader is never sure who to trust, who has hidden motives, and what is really going on in the bigger picture.

With a hint of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, this story is a fun twist on being in the wrong place at the wrong time. It seemed like no one was interested in the murder as much as in drama and teen romance. I found the book to be very slow in the middle and the ending wasn’t necessarily the most enjoyable. I get that McManus was trying to throw in a twist, but it was not satisfying to read. In the end, I thought this was a fun but typical YA book, full of teen drama and an overdone plot. 3.5 stars.

First available on mysteryandsuspense.com
Displaying 1 - 30 of 6,137 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.