Review of ‘Say her name’ by Stefani Deoul
The best book of the series so far. This is the third book in A Sid Rubin Silicon Alley Adventure series. I thought this series showed a lot of promise but I was still a bit on the fence about it. I’m happy to say I’m completely on board now. For me, this was by far the best of the series and the potential has all finally come together. I’m officially hooked and I want more Sid.
These are lesbian YA mystery books. The mysteries are always different and always interesting, but the heart of these books is really geektacular Sid and her life as a 17-year-old in New York City. I have mentioned this before but it’s worth mentioning again, Deoul writes in an extremely believable YA voice. The characters truly feel like 17-year-olds and I can’t help but be impressed with every book. A fun fact, Deoul actually produced Haven which was a Stephen King based TV show I used to love on the SyFy Network. It makes me hopeful we could possibly see some great paranormal books from her in the future, but I do want more Sid first.
I have mentioned in the reviews, for the other books, that I had trouble with the writing style. It is first person, main character narrative and it felt choppy and jerky at times. I don’t know if I have finally gotten used to this style, after three books, or if Deoul calmed down Sid’s racing mind some. Whatever the reason, the writing style felt so much better in this book. I actually think it might be a combo of both. Deoul is clearly reaching her stride in this series and I’m finally more comfortable with her style.
I have patiently been waiting for a YA romance for Sid. She does finally have a girlfriend in this book but I still don’t know if I would put the romance tag on this, maybe a baby romance tag. Actually, this book ended up being more somber than the others because of the subject matter and I do have to mention a trigger warning here. There is talk about slavery, about the slaves that were in New York City before slavery was abolished. I’m giving a trigger warning because it was heartbreaking and just hard to read about. These are YA books and teenagers can definitely read them but Deoul didn’t pull any punches and I think it was important that she didn’t.
Besides the historical part, this book focused on the drama between Sid and her best friends. I have to say that after three books, I am not sure if I actually like her friends all that much. They seem quick to pick on Sid and fast to anger, I just don’t know. I spent a lot of this book with my heart crushed for Sid. And yes the tissues came out a little, but I like YA books better when they make you feel and that is one of the reasons why this was the best of the series so far.
I think I would suggest reading this series in order or at least book two before this one. While the mysteries are all wrapped up in each book, the growth of Sid and her relationships are a continuing storyline. I’m glad I read the whole series but this book was so good that you would probably still enjoy it without reading the others. I would not hesitate to recommend this book to YA fans. Deoul is spot on with her YA voice and this was the kind of book that will stick with you. My only real complaint is since I read all the books in this series, I now have to wait for more Sid. Hopefully, it won’t be too long. 4.50 Stars.
An ARC was given to me by the publisher for an honest review.