Everything You Want Me To Be: A Novel by Mindy MejiaEverything You Want Me To Be: A Novel by Mindy Mejia

Everything You Want Me To Be: A Novel

byMindy Mejia

Hardcover | January 3, 2017

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People’s Best New Books Pick

The Wall Street Journal’s Best New Mysteries

“Fans of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl will devour this fast-paced story.” —InStyle

“Readers drawn to this compelling psychological thriller because of its shared elements with Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl (2012) will be pleasantly surprised to discover that Mejia’s confident storytelling pulls those themes into an altogether different exploration of manipulation and identity.” —Booklist (starred review)

2017’s Best Fiction Books —Bustle

12 Books Gone Girl Fans Should Have on Their Wish List —BookBub

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?

Full of twists and turns, Everything You Want Me to Be reconstructs a year in the life of a dangerously mesmerizing young woman, during which a small town’s darkest secrets come to the forefront…and she inches closer and closer to death.

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?
Title:Everything You Want Me To Be: A NovelFormat:HardcoverDimensions:352 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.1 inPublished:January 3, 2017Publisher:Atria/Emily Bestler BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1501123424

ISBN - 13:9781501123429

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! I found it hard to put this book down! I went into this novel telling myself I wasn't going to even attempt to guess who the murderer was, and I was just going to read with an open mind. I lied to myself because not too far into the book I believed I had the killer pegged. I didn't. I recommend reading this if you like a good mystery.
Date published: 2017-04-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it. ~Disclaimer~ I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ This book takes us into the life of Hattie Hoffman, a high school senior with big dreams of fleeing her small town and acting in New York. She is always playing a part, the perfect daughter, student, and friend. She tailors herself to be what everyone wants in every situation. It all changes when she meets a kindred spirit online. They talk for a while and she discovered that he is someone she knows. Her married English teacher Peter Lund. When he finds out that he's been talking to one of his students all along he is disgusted with himself. But he can't seem to stay away. They have a secret affair. And then everything comes to a screeching halt. One morning Hatties' body is found in an abandoned barn. Who killed her? Why would anyone want to kill her? Was is Peter? Peter's wife? Hattie's boyfriend? Or was it someone else? This book takes us along for the ride in the investigation and discovery of Hatties' life and murder. I don't usually read murder mysteries but this book had me hooked from the start. I loved that each chapter was told from a different point of view, three in total. You were given just enough information each time to have you begging for more. I also enjoyed that the story was not told chronologically. This jumping in time added to the mystery and showed you little bits and pieces of each characters life. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys mysteries, teen life, and romance. 5/5 ⭐
Date published: 2017-04-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Great read for those who love a good mystery! As soon as I read the back of this book and I knew I had to read it and I did, immediately. It did not disappoint -I really loved this book. The characters were likeable and relatable and the story moves at a pace that keeps you wanting to read more. I thought I had figured out who killed Hattie within the first few chapters, but I was wrong! A a great whodunnit!
Date published: 2017-03-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Will the real Hattie please stand up? Everything You Want Me To Be is Mindy Mejia's second novel. Hattie Hoffman is in her last year of high school in a small town. She dreams of moving to New York and becoming the person she wants to be. Only Hattie knows who that is. You see, she changes herself to suit who she is with - family, friends, neighbours, boyfriend - and where she is - alone, school, home or on the stage. Hattie is the consummate actress. And it's going to get her killed...... "Fit the character to the play. You knew you were playing it right when your audience was happy." "I was a million different things depending on who I talked to or how I felt." The reader is told of Hattie's death in the first chapters. From there the timeline flips from past to present, told in three voices - Hattie's, Del - the local Sheriff tasked with finding her killer, and Peter, her high school English teacher. Hattie is a complicated character. I did like her drive and dreams. But on the other hand, how she tries to achieve them is at the expense of others and her manipulations left a sour taste in my mouth. But do we ever know who the real Hattie is? Peter - well, I have no words for him. He is shallow, weak and self deceptive. There are other characters that we only come to know through the interactions with the three main characters. Peter's wife Mary, without having a voice of her own, was the one character I was quite drawn to. Del, the Sheriff, is the other character who I sided with. Mejia's plot explores many different relationships and themes. Innocence, guilt, lust, love, deception and more. And at the heart of it all - who killed Hattie? I liked the slow pacing of the investigation as Del puzzles out the whodunit without the benefit of the reader's inside knowledge. And the final reveal wasn't who I expected. Everything You Want Me To Be was a different read, but quite good. I would pick up another book by Mejia.
Date published: 2017-01-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Head-spinning and Jaw-dropping kind of book! This was absolutely, positively the most hold-your-breath, heart-racing kind of mind-blowing story you need to pick up your jaw off the floor after!!! Wow! Wow! Wow! I kept picking this up and putting it down at the bookstore but it wouldn't let me go. Finally after seeing a review on it I knew I couldn't let this one pass me by. And I'm super thankful I didn't:) The characters, the plot had my head spinning on who could possibly have done it. I love books that make me think and entertain at the same time. Well, Mindy was a juggling pro and I have to say it's definitely one of the best books I've read this year and that's saying a lot. If you are on the fence with this one I can confidently recommend this with balloons and confetti. Fantastic!!!
Date published: 2017-01-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Quiet, Compelling Mystery. The novel opened with Hattie attempting to buy a one-way ticket to New York. Stymied by the airline ticket agent due to her age, she fled and decided to drive as far as she could only to find herself to the place where her body will eventually be found. Told from three alternating points of view, the novel tells the story of a girl who played various acting roles depending on the audience. Hattie never stopped acting. Before or behind the curtain, she assumed different roles for different people. She was the perfect actress, playing the part of the perfect daughter, friend, and student. But beneath the surface was a dissatisfaction that comes from living in a small town. She’s got big dreams that she knew would never come to fruition if she stayed in her hometown. When she started corresponding with someone online, she found a kindred spirit. Someone whom she considered as the only one that truly knew her. From a clandestine affair between two unlikely people to the eventual investigation of Hattie’s murder, Everything You Want Me To Be was a fantastic mystery that’s quiet and engaging in a way that I prefer my mystery reads ought to be. Though far from dull, the author sets an easy pace by which she told Hattie’s story. The suspense comes from the slow reveal of the pieces of the puzzle that come together in a surprising visage. In here, we see Hattie as someone who has crafted the art of acting. She was very adept in duping people into believing her genuineness with great efficacy. But that does not make her a suspect character. It’s done without any malice but more so because Hattie was a people-pleaser through and through. The malice that lurks within was in the way she manipulated the people around her. She was a master in a way that actors tend to be so your initial impression would be that she’s a well-adjusted, normal teenager. "I looked at Tommy until the horny teenager faded away and he became my instrument. I looked at his fingers and saw a hand that was mine to wield, that I could drive to murder the king himself. I looked at his confused expression and saw the madness that we would soon share. I became cold, too cold to feel. By the time he cleared his throat to say his first line, I could tase my own death.” But inside, she’s a mess of ennui and discontent. So when she met a person who had given her a taste of something different and exciting, she clung to him like a buoy drifting into the open sea. The investigation itself is methodically neat. On the whole, there are only two major suspects so there’s a 50/50 chance that you’ll be right. Still, it’s fun to follow the red herrings. Lately, I’ve been drawn to stories with an easy pace. I like the mystery of the characters and the crime that needed to be solved. Sometimes, mysteries don’t need to be action at every turn of the page. It’s these that make for a perfect book to read in winter afternoons.
Date published: 2017-01-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great read to start off 2017! Hattie Hoffman is a talented actress with dreams of moving to New York City after her high school graduation. Teachers think Hattie is the perfect student and other students claim she’s a great listener. Unfortunately, Hattie never makes it to her high school graduation; instead she’s found murdered in an abandoned barn. So how does this seemingly perfect girl end up dead? The story is told from three perspectives; Hattie, Del (the local Sheriff) and Peter (Hattie’s high school English teacher). Throughout the story we are given pieces of information from each character that not only reveals who killed Hattie, but who Hattie really was. I thought I had it figured out. Within the first few chapters I had “called” who killed Hattie Hoffman and I was wrong! This story is full of twists and turns and you continually are examining each character’s motives, even Hattie herself. The characters were intriguing but I think each of them could have had a little more depth. I found some of the reasoning for their actions very surface level and could have used further background and explanation. Mindy Mejia did a great job of keeping the reader guessing until the very end. I enjoyed her writing style and never found myself scanning over the words; I hung to each word and each detail trying to uncover the mystery of who killed Hattie. This was a fantastic debut novel for Mejia and a great way to start my 2017 reading!
Date published: 2017-01-04

Editorial Reviews

"Overall, EVERYTHING YOU WANT ME TO BE is an addicting page-turning tale about innocence, culpability, and manipulation. It’s a surprisingly quick read with a share of twists and turns that will keep you guessing until the final chapters."