People’s Best New Books Pick * The Wall Street Journal’s Best New Mysteries * Bustle's Best Fiction Books
“Fans of Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl will devour this fast-paced story.”—InStyle
No one knows who she really is…
Hattie Hoffman has spent her whole life playing many parts: the good student, the good daughter, the good girlfriend. But Hattie wants something more, something bigger, and ultimately something that turns out to be exceedingly dangerous. When she’s found brutally stabbed to death, the tragedy rips right through the fabric of her small-town community.
It soon comes to light that Hattie was engaged in a highly compromising and potentially explosive secret online relationship. The question is: Did anyone else know? And to what lengths might they have gone to end it? Hattie’s boyfriend seems distraught over her death, but had he fallen so deeply in love with her that she had become an obsession? Or did Hattie’s impulsive, daredevil nature simply put her in the wrong place at the wrong time, leading her to a violent death at the hands of a stranger?
Evocative and razor-sharp, Everything You Want Me to Be challenges you to test the lines between innocence and culpability, identity and deception. Does love lead to self-discovery—or destruction?
The discovery of the body of high school senior Hattie Hoffman, found stabbed in an abandoned barn in rural Pine Valley, Minn., kicks off this engaging, character-driven crime novel from Mejia (The Dragon Keeper), who examines the events leading up to the murder through three narrators Sheriff Del Goodman, a Hoffman family friend; Peter Lund, a high school teacher who tries to escape his faltering marriage through an affair with Hattie; and Hattie herself. A natural actor, Hattie consciously plays roles to please other people. When she falls in love, though, she decides to be honest about her identity and desires with devastating consequences. The story occasionally drags, and the murder's resolution seems almost like an afterthought, but Mejia adroitly charts Hattie's development. Peter, initially sympathetic, becomes cloying, while Del a Vietnam vet who enjoys fishing and the undemanding company of his neighbors' cat emerges as the most compelling and rich of the trio. Readers will look forward to further work from this talented author.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Very good read
The plot was entertaining and plausible. Good writer.
Say goodbye to sleep and productivity because once you pick this book up, you will not want put it down. Best loss of sleep I've ever had. Thank you, Mindy Mejia for a job well done! Your descriptions, detail, and depth kept me interested and my heart racing for each character's account of the days that lead up to and followed Hattie's murder.
Everything You Want Me To Be is a meticulously crafted, unputdownable, crime thriller.
Hattie Hoffman was seventeen, beautiful, talented, and driven. She set a goal to become a famous Broadway actress and was determined to achieve it. Everyone said that Hattie was a natural. She should be; she practiced her acting skills every day, on the people around her. They had no idea of that, though, but they were helping her to become a better actress, just the same. Unlike her classmates, Hattie was not interested in going to college right away. She was heading for New York City, as soon as school ended. She couldn’t wait for the school year to be over, until Peter Lund, the new English teacher walked in.
Peter Lund was the man she had flirted with at CVS, but he would become much more than just a friendly acquaintance to her. She didn’t know that at the time, though. She also didn’t know that her life would end that year.
This is the first book that I’ve read by this author, but it will not be my last. The writing is superb, with fully developed characters and realistic dialogue. Although this perfectly paced book is told from three different points of view, I didn’t find it confusing at all. I loved it.
Many thanks to the publisher, and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy of Everything You Want Me To Be.