Book Review: Dangerous Boys by Abigail Haas

19732381Title: Dangerous Boys

Author: Abigail Haas

Format / Length: Paperback / 336 pages

Publisher / Date Published: Simon & Schuster UK / August 14th 2014

Category / Genre: Young Adult / Magical Realism

Source: Bought!

| Goodreads |

Description: Three teens venture into the abandoned Monroe estate one night; hours later, only two emerge from the burning wreckage. Chloe drags one Reznick brother to safety, unconscious and bleeding; the other is left to burn, dead in the fire. But which brother survives? And is his death a tragic accident? Desperate self-defense? Or murder?

Chloe is the only one with the answers. As the fire rages, and police and parents demand the truth, she struggles to piece together the story of how they got there-a story of jealousy, twisted passion, and the darkness that lurks behind even the most beautiful of faces…

I loved this book — I really did. But did I think this was as good as I found Dangerous Girls to be? Simply put, no, it wasn’t (for reasons discussed later in this review), and I feel bad for saying that, because I still thought this was brilliant. Haas has a way with words, leaving me, once more, reading her books up until ungodly hours of the morning. Both Dangerous Girls and Dangerous Boys are the epitome of a “thriller” — because they were just that. Thrilling.


Like I said, this wasn’t as good as Dangerous Girls. Here’s why:

  • I feel like Abigail Haas has a very certain way of writing, with similar characters and a similar, twisty storyline. This is fine. But it does not make for as much of a shock to the reader after you’ve read one of her novels. And I’m worried that her novels are going to be a “once you’ve read one, you’ve read them all” sort of thing. Her novels, so far, have both contained characters which are delightfully twisted and intriguing to read, and a fast-paced plot and a slightly open ending. While the ending was intense — it wasn’t shocking or as mind-bending as Dangerous Girls’, either.

But let’s not dwell on the negatives, right? Still, I loved this. It was awesome. Like I said, twisted, terrible characters that you just can’t stop reading. I found Oliver particularly interesting, even though he was more than a touch disturbing to read about. (Can’t say I cared much for Ethan. He was a bit dull compared to his brother — but I suspect that was what the author was trying to get at here.)

And the writing! Oh, the writing. I love the way Abigail Haas writes. It’s just so easy to read. I can turn page after page, and the next thing I know I’m halfway though — and oh, look at the time, but who cares about sleeping because this book is so addictive and intense, and I just need to keep reading until I’ve turned the last page.

One of the best things about Abigail Haas’s books is that they make you think. Not in a philosophical, deep way or anything. But she makes you think Damn, humans are freakin’ disturbing creatures. Which is different to read — because YA authors usually aren’t brave enough to go there.

Have you read Dangerous Girls / Dangerous Boys? If you’ve read both — did you like one more than the other?


17 thoughts on “Book Review: Dangerous Boys by Abigail Haas

  1. I’ve read both these books and I actually enjoyed Dangerous Boys more than Dangerous Girls, I think. It wasn’t as much of a shocking ending, but I really liked seeing the development over time. I agree with the writing – Dangerous Girls is the only book I’ve read in one sitting and I put that all down to how easy it is to read.

  2. I have not read either of these, but they sound extremely scary. I have read one of the chick lit books by this author which was somewhat meh/predictable (which is why Idon’t really read chicklit) But maybe, on a sunny day when I feel like reading about some messed up people, I’ll try this one.

  3. I haven’t yet read Dangerous Girls or Dangerous Boys, but I’m really curious about the two books. I’m all for mind blowing endings, but at the same time, I think I might scare myself with these books, haha. I really love when authors make you think, though, and I find that happens most effectively when the ending is slightly open.

  4. I just read and LOVED Dangerous Girls and I plan on reading this one next. It’s a shame you didn’t like it as much (although Dangerous Girls would be hard to top), but I’m still looking forward to it! Great review :)

  5. I’ve read both, and while I was blown away by Dangerous Girls, Dangerous Boys didn’t do much for me unfortunately. I liked it, but it didn’t have that intensity that I kinda assumed it would have, and the ending really didn’t feel like much of a revelation. More like, TA DA. The end. I thought about that too Kara, read one, read them all. I think that was my main issue, I assumed it would be that intense, chaotic and frantic read, but it was such a let down. I don’t think she really harnessed that magic that she created with Dangerous Girls and tried a little too hard to replicate it. She’s probably pigeon holed herself into that thriller / mystery genre now too, wonder what she’ll bring out next.

    Lovely review Kara <3

  6. I felt exactly the same way Kara – although I still really did enjoy this one, Dangerous Girls still takes the cake for me. Nonetheless, I totally agree with what you say about Abigail Haas’s writing style – there’s something undeniably captivating about it and I can’t wait to see what she writes next. If you like her work, I’d definitely recommend Megan Abbott’s novels which have the same style and those complex, twisted characters (her books are pretty underrated but make great reads!).

  7. I feel like the general consensus with these two books is that they are both brilliant, but that Dangerous Girls really takes the cake for WTF?! Thanks for a great review, Kara! I’m glad you enjoyed this one. I purchased DG when it was all over the blogosphere and still haven’t got around to reading it. Putting it on my TBR for next month. :)

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