The Last Good Girl by Allison Leotta | ARC Review

April 26, 2016 | Posted by Genesis in Book Reviews | 8 Comments

The Last Good Girl by Allison Leotta | ARC ReviewThe Last Good Girl
by Allison Leotta
Series: Anna Curtis #5
Genres: Contemporary, Detective, Mystery, Suspense
Publication Date: May 3rd 2016 by Touchstone
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4 Stars
Source: Publisher via Netgalley

From Allison Leotta, the “highly entertaining storyteller” (George Pelecanos) who writes “in a style that’s as real as it gets” (USA TODAY), a ripped-from-the-headlines novel featuring prosecutor Anna Curtis at the center of a national story involving campus rape and the disappearance of a young woman.

Emma, a freshman at a Michigan university, has gone missing. She was last seen leaving a bar near the prestigious and secretive fraternity known on campus as “the rape factory.” The main suspect is Dylan Brooks, the son of one of the most powerful politicians in the state. But so far the only clues are pieced-together surveillance footage of Emma leaving the bar that night…and Dylan running down the street after her.

When Anna discovers the video diary Emma kept over her first few months at college, it exposes the history she had with Dylan: she had accused him of rape before disappearing.

Emma’s disappearance gets media attention and support from Title IX activists across the country, but Anna’s investigation hits a wall. Now Anna is looking for something, anything she can use to find Emma alive. But without a body or any physical evidence, she’s under threat from people who tell her to think hard before she ruins the name of an “innocent young man.”

Inspired by real-life stories, The Last Good Girl shines a light on campus rape and the powerful emotional dynamics that affect the families of the men and women on both sides.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

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The Last Good Girl is a haunting and chilling tale that will keep readers glued to this brutal story from the beginning until the very end. 

When I read the author of this book used to be a U.S. Federal prosecutor in the sex crimes area, I was beyond excited because that meant the author knew what she was talking about and it felt all the more real. To say that I was in shock and so surprised at how colleges handle these situations is an understatement. I was so appalled by the whole process and even more so when I read it was inspired by real life stories. The reality is this happens in real life! I felt even more disgusted when I realized this while I kept going more into the story.

He said a lot of times the victim’s better off just letting it go and moving on with her life.

Going into this book, I had no idea I was going to get this very well-written story. I feel like I learned a lot from it and I love when books help me intellectually. The story follows a girl who went to a bar to have fun with friends only to be seen outside of the bar, trying to get a way from a guy and ultimately, the girl disappears. Anna is called by her ex-husband to help on the case, seeing as she’s a prosecutor and could very well help run this case along. Anna does everything in her power to find out what happened to Emma Shappiro. She finds evidence that Emily had actually been raped her first year at college by the same guy that had last seen her.

I was so frustrated at the authoritative figures of the college campus because they were trying to cover everything up so their statistics on rape would be zero, when the reality is they had a bunch of cases from victims they had simply left hidden. The author did a fantastic job in explaining every single detail that goes down in an investigation of this matter, which helped me understand everything. I was definitely enthralled by the whole process that the FBI was doing, trying to uncover what had happened while everyone else didn’t want this to spread.

“No parent wants their kid going to Rape U. So the colleges pretend it doesn’t happen.”

This story alternated between Anna’s perspective in third person and video logs that Emma had made, stating everything that had happened to her. Also, we get a few third person perspectives from secondary characters that gave  more highlight to this whole case. I was not prepared for the twist at the end and how everything went down but the author really knows how to throw things at the reader by surprise. I do wish I had gotten more from the offender towards the end, simply to see justice served even though it was loosely mentioned.

Overall, it was a very mind-blowing story that kept me hooked and I didn’t want to stop until I had all of the answers. I’ll be reading Allison Leotta’s other books for sure.

About Allison Leotta

For twelve years, Allison Leotta was a federal prosecutor in Washington, D.C., where she specialized in sex crimes, domestic violence, and crimes against children. Drawing on this experience, she now writes legal thrillers, for which she’s been dubbed “the female John Grisham.” Her goal is for Grisham to be dubbed “the male Allison Leotta.”

After publishing her debut, LAW OF ATTRACTION, Simon & Schuster asked Allison to continue writing about her fictional sex-crimes prosecutor, Anna Curtis. A series was born! There are now four novels in the Anna Curtis series. The fifth book, THE LAST GOOD GIRL, will be published this May.

USA Today says Allison’s writing is “as real as it gets.” Her books have earned “Best of the Year” awards from Strand Magazine, Romance Reviews Today, and Suspense Magazine. Her fourth novel, A GOOD KILLING, was named one of the “Best of the Best Summer Books” by O, The Oprah Magazine.

Allison is also a contributor to the Huffington Post, where she reality-checks TV crime dramas like Law & Order: SVU. Her own blog, The Prime-Time Crime Review, was named one of the best legal blogs in America by the American Bar Association. Allison has provided legal commentary for outlets such as CNN, MSNBC, PBS, and Reuters TV. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Mystery Writers of America.

A graduate of Michigan State University and Harvard Law School, Allison lives outside of Washington, D.C., with her husband, Michael Leotta, and their two sons.

Genesis
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Genesis

Book Blogger at Latte Nights Reviews
Genesis is a 22-year-old girl who lives in Puerto Rico, an island in the Caribbean. She's obsessed with Instagram (@lattenightsbooks) and coffee shops. When she's not reading or on social media, she can be found eating, at the beach, being with her boyfriend and/or hanging out with friends.
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  • Oh this sounds so up my alley! Especially if the twist is good. I see this is a series but can it be read as a stand alone? Great review!!!

    Grace @ Rebel Mommy Book Blog recently posted: Top Ten Bookish Delights
    • It is part of a series but the cases from each book are different 🙂 Only Anna Curtis stays throughout the stories.

  • I’ve been seeking for more and more mystery and thriller novels and have been requesting a couple on NG/EW. This one sounds fantastic! I love that it kept you hooked all throughout!
    Great review, Genesis!

    Nick recently posted: Review: Sidebarred by Emma Chase
    • This one was amazing. It’s been a while since I’ve read a good mystery novel like this one.

  • Wow this sounds like it was so well done and I agree I like that the author had the knowledge and experience! Definitely want to read this one!!

    Eva @ All Books Considered recently posted: Review: The Wedding Pact (The O'Malleys #2) by Katee Robert
    • I love it when authors know what they are talking about. I feel like I can trust whatever they say in their stories haha

  • I’ve never seen this series before and it sounds really good (and definitely my type of read!) – a mystery that will keep you reading until the end plus unexpected twists! I’m adding this to my tbr!! 😀

  • Wow, this sounds so powerful. Incredibly interesting but I imagine it’s pretty eye-opening and rage-inducing as well. I think I’ll be one-clicking this one. I love the fact that there seems to be so many layers to the story.

    Tanya @ Girl Plus Books recently posted: Top 5 Wednesday: Favorite Fictional Moms