Review: The Third Twin by CJ Omololu

The first thing that intrigued me about this book, was the title. Then I took a closer look at the cover and knew I had to request it from NetGalley. When I was approved to read it, I was so happy because I needed to know about this 'third twin' that somehow was mysterious enough to warrant a whole book.

Publication Date: February 24, 2015

Twins, Lexi and Ava, have a made-up twin, Alicia, who takes the blame for everything. Something bad happens? Alicia did it. A vase was broken? Alicia did it. Food disappeared? Alicia. Now, as high school seniors, Alicia dates the boys that aren't exactly...dateable. Hot, but definitely not boyfriend material. Boys they'd never be with in real life.

Then, one of the boys Alicia dates, turns up dead. Lexi wants to stop the game, but Ava insists that if they keep the rules of playing Alicia, everything will be fine. But when another boy is killed and all the evidence points towards Alicia - a person who doesn't exist - Lexi begins running from the cops and trying to figure out the truth before another boy dies. Because either Ava is a killer...or Alicia is real.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

When I first read the synopsis and saw the cover, I was so intrigued by the idea of identical twins with an imaginary triplet. Combined with the mystery element, I needed to know what this would be like. And as a result of all the adult Mystery & Thriller books I've read since the beginning of 2015, I had high expectations for The Third Twin.

I did end up enjoying it, though not as much as I wanted to. There's just something about YA mysteries that I find to be lacking. Maybe it's the suspense, or maybe it's the execution, but I have yet to find a YA mystery book that keeps me as intrigued and absorbed as an adult mystery would.

The plot was simple enough to follow, but at times, I found that it dragged and became too simplistic. It was almost like the author wrote portions that didn't really make a huge difference, cause it ended up not being much use later. I remember one instance where a character mentions something that literally happened 40 or so pages ago, and she can't remember how she knew it. And then there was no mention of how she knew that information ever again.

There were a couple of questions I still had at the end of the book, particularly in reference to the scene I mentioned above. The ending felt really rushed and the last chapter failed to explain much of anything really. It just felt like a description of events that didn't really have a whole lot of impact or reason for being there. Personally, I think that a better ending could've be written, with more explanations and more closure.

I did find myself bored throughout a fairly large chunk of the book, and didn't connect to any of the characters at all. I didn't relate to any of them and found it hard to feel anything for what was happening to them. For the most part, I found the main character to be slightly annoying and childish, despite the fact that she and I are the same age.

Another thing that I found to be quite annoying were the character descriptions. Up till now, I still don't really know what any of the characters look like. I have a vague idea, but I can't picture them clearly. The character descriptions were too vague for my liking and most of the time, I had to come up with random looks in my head for certain characters because there was no mention of what they looked like.

I will admit, though, that the last plot twist took me by surprise. I wasn't quite expecting it, though I think it might have done more for the plot if it wasn't just thrown out in the last 40+ pages like "Hey! Here's what you've wanted for the rest of the book." And the fact that I was reading an e-ARC copy that squished the 336 pages into 223 pages already says a lot for how bored I was throughout the majority of the book and how the ending was totally rushed.

I didn't actually like Lexi all that much. I found her to be childish and slightly annoying, with how she handled things and basically accused everyone around her of being suspicious. Her love interests (yes, multiple. Keep in mind that she's playing Alicia, a person who doesn't exist) were mediocre at best and didn't do much for me.

Ava wasn't much better. She's was more of the stereotypical, spoiled, rich girl who didn't care for many people besides herself. How she handled everything also annoyed me, and certain things that she did, I found to be so incredibly stupid.

3.5 stars. It was an okay read. Not necessarily recommended, but the cover is nice enough. This might be more suited for YA readers who have little to no experience with mystery books, as it definitely doesn't have the kick that most adult Mystery & Thriller books have.

Thank you to NetGalley for hosting this on your website. Thank you to Delacorte BFYR for publishing this and making it available on NetGalley for review.

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