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I'm Kellie, an avid reader and school librarian who loves sharing and talking about books.As a middle school librarian I get to spend my days doing just that, while also enjoy discovering the perfect books to share with my friends. Ms. Burke's Books is a continuation of that, a place where I can offer my honest opinions on the books I read and hopefully help match you to your new favorite book!

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You'll Be the Death of Me by Karen McManus

You'll Be the Death of Me

 Overall an entertaining thriller from Karen McManus; not one of my favroties of hers but fans will enjoy it.


A day of skipping school to have some fun and rekindle their once solid friendship turns into a nightmare for Ivy, Cal, and Mateo when they stumble across the body of a classmate. As they become entangled in the murder secrets are revealed and the three high school seniors have to determine whether they can trust each other. While Karen McManus is a popular YA mystery/suspense author for a reason, You’ll Be the Death of Me falls flat compared to her other novels.

My Thoughts

As a fan of Karen McManus (One of Us is Lying) I was excited to read her latest but felt it wasn't quite as good as some of her other novels. The main issue I had was that the large cast of minor characters ended up taking some suspense away over the end reveal; it was almost too many options that I felt less invested in figuring out who did it. The drug ring also took away some suspense because unlike some of her other books, having a death that may be connected to a drug ring isn't quite so shocking (compared to say, a murder in the middle of detention).

Some of the main characters secrets also did not live up to their potential, mainly related to the three characters' dissolved friendship and not anything connected to the murder itself. The side story of Mateo and his cousin needing to earn money to support their family did add a layered context to the decisions of their characters. I found this to be the most compelling storyline and could empathize with them more than some of the other characters.

Overall, this thriller was okay. It was entertaining and I did enjoy it, I just found it wasn't one of my favorites of Karen McManus.

Book Information

Author: Karen McManus
Publisher: Random House Children's, Delacorte Press
Publish Date: November 30, 2021

Genre(s): Mystery/thriller
Recommended for: Teens
Protagonist Description: Mateo is Latino; Ivy and Cal present as white
Trigger Warnings: Murder, violence, drugs

I received an ARC (advanced reader copy) of this book for free from NetGalley and Random House Children's. This is my honest review and all opinions are my own.

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