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June 19, 2012

Review: Rosebush by Michele Jaffe - Juhina


Title: Rosebush
Author: Michele Jaffe
Publication date: March 1, 2011
Publisher: Atom
Genre(s): Young Adult (Mystery thriller)
Challenges: Contemporary 
Source: Own
Format: Paperback
Pages: 336
See Jane run. See Jane die.

Instead of celebrating Memorial Day weekend on the Jersey shore, Jane is in the hospital surrounded by teddy bears, trying to piece together what happened last night. One minute she was at a party, wearing fairy wings and cuddling with her boyfriend. The next, she was lying near-dead in a rosebush after a hit and run.

Everyone thinks it was an accident, despite the phone threats Jane swears were real. But the truth is a thorny thing. As Jane's boyfriend, friends, and admirers come to visit, more memories surface--not just from the party, but from deeper in her past...including the night her best friend Bonnie died.

With nearly everyone in her life a suspect now, Jane must unravel the mystery before her killer attacks again. Along the way, she is forced to examine the consequences of her life choices in this compulsively readable thriller.
I am a huge mystery thriller junkie. I love anything mystery, especially if it keeps me guessing and thinking and trying to figure out who the murderer is, but in Rosebush's case, it is who wants to see Jane dead. Someone who is still persistent even after Jane ends up almost dying and gets put in the hospital. The phone messages, the secret admirer gifts, it was all so creepy! I really didn't know who the murderer is, and I usually have a gift when it comes to figuring out who the murderer is in a show (The Mentalist) or books. Michele Jaffe was great in making every single one of Jane's friends a bit suspicious, even if she didn't write it straightforward, you get this feeling through avoiding glances, hurried reactions, etc that kept me guessing from one person to another. 
The murderer was such a surprise, and the backstory of what in the world made him/her do it finally made sense, in the creepy disgusting way. There was definitely subtle hints and I felt that Jaffe purposefully did not make the murder that suspicious to throw us off! However I salute him for keeping the eerie and creepy factor throughout the whole novel. Jane is popular, and has a ton of friends, but only a couple of close friends and a boyfriend. I just found that every single one of her friends turned out to be the evil twin of themselves was a bit unrealistic. The way each character was portrayed before the murder attempt was sweet, carefree, and friendly. However after the murder attempt, the true colors of every single one of them emerged. Also Jane herself was a bit too blind and, not naive, but ignorant of the way her friends act. So it gets me wondering, did Jane portray them as carefree and nice before the accident but then somehow the accident made her see them the way they really are, or did Jaffe herself portray them as nice people but then made them into the horrid people they are to keep us readers suspicious? 
Anyways, all in all Rosebush was a great enjoyable mystery thriller. While I hoped Jane wasn't stuck in the hospital for the duration of the whole book, I did like that she had lost her memory of the night of the attempted murder, gave it a more authentic 'mystery' to the 'mystery thriller' it was. 
4 musical notes!


  1. Thanks for introducing this book. I like the summary and it definitely looks interesting. You did a great job in shedding some light on the characters. Can't wait to read them!


  2. I LOVE thrillers too! The great suspense in this book as you told is going to keep me up at night reading(which I love)! Awesome review! :D

    Fara @ Tumbling In Books

  3. I love mysteries and thrilled so will have to give this a shot. Plus the cover is gorgeous. Great review!

  4. I really do enjoy reading a mystery. They are the perfect page turner to whisk the afternoon away.