This is the fifth and final book in my list of YA Edgar nominees to read.
Author: Niall Leonard
Age group: Young Adult
Synopsis: Finn Maguire, a dyslexic seventeen-year-old who works at the local fast food joint, finds his stepfather beaten to death after arriving home from work one day. The cops immediately suspect him, and in order to clear his name, Finn dives deep into the London underworld. On the way, Finn encounters several people with mysterious connections to his dad and uncovers a few family secrets.
Author Niall Leonard is the husband of British author E.L. James, best known for her Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy. I have not read any of her series, but her husband certainly doesn’t shy away from sex scenes or vulgar language in his debut young adult novel. In fact, in some ways, protagonist Finn Maguire reminded me of a male version of the narrator from Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone.
The plot certainly moves along quickly, and the twists and turns in the storyline give it a movie feel, which makes sense since Leonard also works as a screenwriter. Although I haven’t analyzed the story that closely, it certainly felt like it was following the “Save the Cat” model for plotting.
Now that I’ve read all five YA nominees for the Edgar Award, the question is, which will win when the awards are given out in May? I’m not quite willing to make my prediction yet, but I’ll do so within the next month.