by Lorie Langdon
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Willow Lamott’s best friend is a murderer, and no one in the small town of Gilt Hollow will let her forget it. For four long years, she’s tried to fade into the background—but none of that matters when Ashton Keller comes striding into school, fresh out of juvie and fueled by revenge. The moment their eyes meet, Willow no longer feels invisible. Drawn to the vulnerability behind Ashton’s mask of rage, she sinks deeper into his sinister world and begins to question whether he’s a villain, a savior, or both.
Ashton thought he wanted vengeance, until Willow reminded him what he’d been missing. Now he longs to clear his name and become the person she sees in him. But the closer they get to uncovering the truth, the darker the secrets become, and Ashton fears his return to Gilt Hollow will destroy everyone he loves, especially the girl he left behind.
Four years ago, Willow’s best friend, Ashton, was sent to Juvenile Detention for manslaughter. She hasn’t heard anything from him in all that time, though she sent him dozens of letters and defended his innocence to anyone who would listen. Now, though, Ashton has been released from prison and is coming back to their town Gilt Hollow for revenge against those who falsely accused him. What does that mean for Willow, who Ashton believes deserted him?
Gilt Hollow by Lorie Langdon was an interesting book. It is a YA romance and mystery, the characters seniors in high school and the story revolving around the mystery of who is really the murderer. The murder mystery part of the plot was very intriguing. Someone was framing Ashton for the weird things that were happening in the town and high school—a shredded football uniform, a robbery, and more. The characters eventually started working together to discover who was framing him, and their discoveries kept me in suspense throughout. The setting was wonderfully described and used to the story’s advantage, as were the events and quirks in the town. I wasn’t always sure what to make of the romance though. We have this young man bent on revenge and this sweet girl trying to survive high school, and it was cute how everything turned out. But there were times when I wondered, with the knowledge that Willow had at the time, whether she should want a relationship with Ashton at all. He seemed creepy and cruel at times, though some of that was just her perception of him without all the facts, and made me wonder about the healthiness of their relationship. Everything turned out all right at the end, though. The characters were perfect for each other.
I enjoyed this novel and recommend it to those who enjoy YA contemporary novels.
I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.