Skip to content
Reviewed by Mia Hayes
Opening sentence
An engaging mystery and suspenseful plot, reviewed by Mia Hayes
October 31, 2022

Nothing More to Tell is a standalone novel written by Karen M. McManus. Having read other books by this author, as soon as I saw Nothing More to Tell, I knew I had to read it. As a reader who tends to be attracted to fantasy and romance, this mystery and thriller completely engrossed me the entire time. This compelling story did not fail to live up to other novels written by McManus.

This story begins following on four years after the shocking murder of Brynn’s favourite teacher, Mr. Larkin. Mr. Larkin’s body was found by three fellow students, Charlotte, Tripp, and Shane, behind their school. Although there was much evidence against these three high school students, the case was closed and left unsolved. Many people in their town were shocked at this sudden closure of the case, especially Brynn, “and it feels too... well, just what you said. Tidy.”

After this distressing event, Brynn and her family move away and four years later, when the story begins, her family comes back to the small town and Brynn returns to her school. She receives an internship at a local newspaper and begins to uncover what happened on that day. Throughout the novel, emotions run high, and the plot runs wild in what is truly an utterly captivating story.

Brynn and Tripp became friends four years ago when suddenly he shut her out after the event of Mr. Larkin’s death. Once Brynn returns, they reunite and build back their friendship. Not only is this a mystery and thriller book, but it also has a hint of romance that evolves further on. Many readers will be able to relate to characters in this novel, such as Brynn and Tripp, the pair who are both described in a compelling way.

McManus’ jaw-dropping plot twists came as a surprise to me. Bit by bit, evidence of the case is revealed, keeping the reader engaged in what is happening and creating an active reading experience. McManus makes you believe what is being told, before shocking you with more evidence that has come to light, taking you on a rollercoaster of emotions. A lot of suspense is built up, overall, leaving me unable to put the novel down. It is as consistent and page-turning as other books written by her.

McManus has an amazing way of expressing the thoughts and feelings of the characters in the novel. Nothing More to Tell helps readers truly understand the characters' emotions in this book and what it is like to be young and scared and be unsure of who to trust.

I would highly recommend this book to readers aged 14 and older and I would give it a 4.5 out of 5 stars. Nothing More to Tell has encouraged me to explore more mystery and thriller books. This engaging, fast-paced novel will truly leave you speechless, every step of the way.

- Mia is 14 and lives in New Plymouth.

Editor's note: Hooked on NZ Books is primarily a site for reviewing books by New Zealand-based authors, but from time to time, we feature international YA books that are sent in for review.
Author & Illustrator: Karen M. McManus
Publisher: Penguin Books