Girl in Snow by Danya Kukafka

Girl in Snow

Who Are You When No One Is Watching?When a beloved high schooler named Lucinda Hayes is found murdered, no one in her sleepy Colorado suburb is untouched—not the boy who loved her too much; not the girl who wanted her perfect life; not the officer assigned to investigate her murder. In the aftermath of the tragedy, these three indelible characters—Cameron, Jade, and Russ—m...

Title:Girl in Snow
Author:
Rating:
ISBN:1501144375
Edition Language:English
Number of Pages:368 pages

Girl in Snow Reviews

  • Liz

    This is supposedly a mystery about a teenage girl who is murdered. But it's really a character study of three individuals- a young man that stalked her, a girl who hated her and a policeman. It's not a fast paced novel at all, instead there's lots of internal dialog. In fact, it's the opposite of fast. It moves at a glacial pace.

    It is well written with lots of well turned phrases. The two teenagers are both odd, damaged souls. Friendless, they live in their own little worlds. Cameron literally

    This is supposedly a mystery about a teenage girl who is murdered. But it's really a character study of three individuals- a young man that stalked her, a girl who hated her and a policeman. It's not a fast paced novel at all, instead there's lots of internal dialog. In fact, it's the opposite of fast. It moves at a glacial pace.

    It is well written with lots of well turned phrases. The two teenagers are both odd, damaged souls. Friendless, they live in their own little worlds. Cameron literally spends most of his time spying on his neighbors. Russ, the cop, seems stuck in a dead end job and his marriage is stupefying.

    But in the end, I just needed more action to make this one interesting for me. 2.5 stars rounded up given the quality of the writing.

    My thanks to netgalley and Simon & Schuster for an advance copy of this book.

  • Deanna

    My reviews can also be seen at:

    3.5 Stars

    I was quite intrigued after reading the description for, GIRL IN SNOW. The mysterious death of a small town girl and the secret lives of three individuals connected to her. A socially awkward boy who was in love with Lucinda, a teenage girl who despised Lucinda, and the detective investigating her death.

    The story is told from the perspectives of Cameron Whitley, Jade Dixon-Burns and Detective Russ Fletcher.

    The princ

    My reviews can also be seen at:

    3.5 Stars

    I was quite intrigued after reading the description for, GIRL IN SNOW. The mysterious death of a small town girl and the secret lives of three individuals connected to her. A socially awkward boy who was in love with Lucinda, a teenage girl who despised Lucinda, and the detective investigating her death.

    The story is told from the perspectives of Cameron Whitley, Jade Dixon-Burns and Detective Russ Fletcher.

    The principal of Jefferson High School has called an assembly to tell the students about Lucinda's death. Cameron has quite a physical reaction to this news. After the announcement speculation starts immediately. Some said she was sexually assaulted, others said she killed herself, the rumors run rampant. A lot of students are genuinely sad, while others like the drama....

    Cameron tries to recall where we was when Lucinda died, but he can't remember.

    Cameron likes to play

    . He started playing this at age twelve. He believes that if he stands perfectly still he can't be seen.

    It's wasn't long before he started playing Statue Nights while watching Lucinda. Cameron has a lot of anxiety and often gets "

    ". Tangled is a word he uses to describe when he gets worked up about something.

    Jade Dixon-Burns.......straight up hated Lucinda and doesn't even try to hide it. Lucinda stole her babysitting job but most importantly she stole Jade's best friend. Jade is really irritated by the fact that Lucinda didn't seem to notice who she hurts. Jade often says whatever pops into her head. She feels like she can't even fake sadness over Lucinda's death.

    Interspersed thought-out the book is a screenplay written by Jade. "

    , was about what she said to people vs. what she'd wished she said.

    Detective Russ Fletcher is an officer with a sketchy past who is investigating the death of Lucinda Hayes. He's been hearing rumors about Cameron Whitley and how he liked to follow and watch Lucinda. He has another connection to Cameron Whitley. The detective made a promise to someone years ago, a promise he intends on keeping.

    "

    ", are words that Russ hasn't heard in all his years on the job, most of his career has been spent on things like speeding tickets....small time stuff. He'll soon find out that he's connected to this crime in ways he'd never have expected.

    When he asks Cameron Whitley where he was the night of Lucinda's murder...

    Cameron can't remember.

    We learn more about the inner lives of these three characters. There are quite a few people who may have had reason to kill Lucinda. Was it Cameron, who liked to watch her and can't remember where he was when she was killed? Or Jade who so deeply despised Lucinda? Or could it be someone else? Cameron appeared harmless and I felt sorry for him. But harmless can also be dangerous. There's a fine line between love and obsession.

    While the mystery surrounding Lucinda's death was intriguing, I didn't feel connected to Lucinda herself, only as the victim of this horrible crime. It felt like more of a character study than a mystery or thriller. Quite slow at times, I found myself having trouble staying connected to the story. However, there was some really beautiful writing, including quotes that I want to remember forever. But it felt like there was quite a bit of extra writing, as well as a few extra characters, whose purpose I didn't really understand.

    All that being said, "Girl in Snow" was thought-provoking and interesting. I appreciated learning about the characters (some more than others). I especially enjoyed Jade's chapters, learning about her life, her mother, and the experiences that helped define her. It was interesting seeing how her character developed over the course of the novel. I loved the addition of her screenplay. I had no idea who killed Lucinda, although I had my suspicions. So how everything played out was quite surprising.

    All in all, I thought this was pretty good for a debut novel, though I wished there had been more focus on the plot and less on each individual character. The writing was still very good and I would absolutely read more from this author.

    Thank you NetGalley and Simon & Schuster for providing an advanced readers copy of this book for me to read in exchange for my honest review.

  • James

    3.5 out of 5 stars to

    , a new mystery and suspense novel written by

    and set to be released on August 1st, 2017. Many thanks to Simon & Schuster, NetGalley and the author for the opportunity to review an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) of this novel. I enjoyed it and would be interested in reading more by this author.

    This is slightly embarrassing, but I'm not one hundred percent certain how I came to read this book. I was awarded the novel on NetGalley in

    3.5 out of 5 stars to

    , a new mystery and suspense novel written by

    and set to be released on August 1st, 2017. Many thanks to Simon & Schuster, NetGalley and the author for the opportunity to review an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) of this novel. I enjoyed it and would be interested in reading more by this author.

    This is slightly embarrassing, but I'm not one hundred percent certain how I came to read this book. I was awarded the novel on NetGalley in May, but I believe someone recommended it to me, or maybe the publisher reached out to me to take a look at it. I can't find any emails, which I normally save, or any comments that might refresh my memory... so bottom-line, it was part of a NetGalley list of books I wanted to read.

    Lucinda is a teenager in a small Colorado town who is found dead in the snow on a school playground by a custodian. She was hit in the head with a blunt object and left to die. The story follows several people in the town who either knew the girl or knew of her, each having different opinions about whether Lucinda was a good person or a bad girl.

    Cameron is the boy who loved her from afar, except someone knows he was stalking the girl and watching through her windows. He's had mini-breakdowns after his father left town years ago under very bad circumstances. He doesn't remember doing anything, but people close to him know he was missing, saw him talking to her and believe he's guilty.

    Jade is a fellow schoolmate who did not like Lucinda. Lucinda stole the boy Jade loved, but the boy never really loved Jade. Jade is not upset that Lucinda is dead, but her younger sister is angry. Jade's mother treats her daughter poorly and seems to be hiding some sort of a secret.

    Russ is the cop assigned to investigate Lucinda's death. He's harboring a secret about his friendship with Cameron's father, as well as the reasons Cameron's father disappeared. He's also certain the school custodian, who happens to be Russ's wife's brother, is guilty. He tries to navigate the situation, but finds himself stuck on the past.

    A few other characters intersect, e.g. a couple with a young child that both Lucinda and Jade babysat for. A young school teacher accused of flirting inappropriately with his female students. And the friends and family members of all 3 main characters.

    One of these people is guilty. But the question is who... and you'll need to read the book to find out.

    I read the novel on my iPad through Kindle Reader. It was about 4500 lines, which is about a 300 page hardcover -- not that long. Chapters are relatively short and alternate perspective from the 3 main characters: Cameron, Jade and Russ. The language and writing are absolutely beautiful. So much background and description are revealed in the narration and prose. There are limited amounts of dialogue.

    Jade tells 2 sides of every conversation -- what she wishes she said (through a play she is writing) and what she actually said. For a young and new writer, the author has a firm grip on flourishing language. On occasion, it fell a little too simple, but it balanced out from the lengthy details of everything else going on in the background.

    The best part of the story is the absolutely beautiful descriptions of the characters and the scenery. Everything feels authentic. The plot is complex in that there are different levels of relationships happening behind the scenes, which readers only see when certain characters happen to stumble on the supporting cast. It's a good approach to hold interest in the story. The plot has many interesting sub-components, which help reveal who people really are on the inside versus who they appear to be on the outside.

    I didn't know enough about nor care much for Lucinda. A lot of details were revealed about her, but she's dead when the story starts. As a result, I felt like she could have been anyone as opposed to having a real strong desire inside me to want to know who killed her. I felt less of an attachment to her, but if it were written a little differently, I think it would have been an easy 4 rating for me. Also, once the killer is revealed, there is no scene explaining how/why it happened. You have a hint at the reason for the murder, but you never actually watch or hear the scene played out from either the narrator or a confession from the killer. It felt like a bit of a letdown.

    This is a very typical story about 3 seemingly disconnected characters where you have to figure out how everyone knew each other. There are a lot of similar type stories on the market right now, as it's a popular genre and sub-genre. In a way, it was similar to "Beartown" in the structure, focus on teenagers and the mystery portion. But it was also like "I Found You" where the 3 stories will intersect somehow, but you just don't know until the end, but also that this this was about teenagers and "I Found You" was not only about teenagers.

    This is the author's first book. She definitely has writing talent and storytelling abilities. I think with more experience, she'll flush out some of the areas that felt a bit weak to me and become a fantastic and creative author in this genre. I'm glad I read it and will chance her next book.

    For those new to me or my reviews... here's the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at

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