Sunday, July 19, 2015

Review: Don't Look Back by Jennifer Armentrout

Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: None
Genre: YA, Mystery/Thriller, Suspense, Contemporary, Romance
Release Date: April 15, 2014
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
My Rating: 4 Stars
Summary From Goodreads: 
Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend, Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all-popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend. 
Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it's one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took "mean girl" to a whole new level, and it's clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Sam is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She's getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she's falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her-even if the old Sam treated him like trash. 
But Cassie is still missing, and the facts about what happened to her that night isn't just buried deep inside of Sam's memory-someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of that fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive?

My Thoughts 

I don't read many mystery books, but I'll read anything by Jennifer Armentrout. I feel like I would've enjoyed Don't Look Back even more so if I had not read the Dead List beforehand. Both books were kind of similar, but I did enjoy the Dead List more. Don't Look Back was definitely a fast read for me though. I finished it in about an hour and a half! 

Sam wakes up outside with no memory of her past at all. As she gets reacquainted with her friends, family, and life, she realizes that she was a typical "mean girl." Her boyfriend and friends are even bigger jerks, and Sam questions how she was even friends with them in the first place. She decides doesn't like the "old" Sam and begins hanging out with Carson, her childhood friend, instead. While this is all happening, Sam's friend, Cassie, has gone missing, and Sam was the last person with her but she has s no memory of it. As time passes, Sam begins receiving anonymous notes about the day she lost her memory and Cassie's disappearance. Things become even crazier after she starts seeing a mysterious guy appear randomly and hearing Cassie's voice. The people around her think she's gone crazy, but Sam knows there's more to Cassie's disappearance, considering they were said to be best friends, and Sam's determined to figure it out no matter the costs. 
The plot of Don't Look Back definitely kept me on my toes. While I had a possible list of suspects in mind, none of them were correct. However, the plot wasn't the most unique since it's essentially just a typical murder/mystery with amnesiac character story. The only thing that really surprised me was the plot twist at the end which revealed the culprit. The motives behind Cassie's disappearance went the most original though.

Characters: I loved the character development in Sam and how she saw the wrongs of her actions before she lost her memory. Carson helped her a ton by supporting her afterwards, even though they didn't have the best relationship in the past. He's undoubtedly my favorite character because he's Carson! He's super sweet and adorable. :D I just want to cuddle him! Lol. 
On the other hand, Sam's friends and boyfriend are probably the worst people. They're literally the epitome of the mean girls. Cassie is totally Regina and the rest of them are just her minions. Cassie definitely had a bad influence on Sam by being "friend."

Overall Don't Look Back is a gripping, fast-paced read, perfect for mystery fans. Or read it for Carson ;) Trust me when I say that Jennifer Armentrout will never let you down. 

J. Lynn
#1 NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki. Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her book Obsidian has been optioned for a major motion picture and her Covenant Series has been optioned for TV. She also writes adult and New Adult romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.


  1. Great review! I liked this one too -- it's hard to find good YA thrillers and this one fit the bill!

    1. Thank you! And I agree! I'm glad you like it as well :)