Last One to Fall
Published May 9, 2023
Amazon | Bookshop | Goodreads
About Last One to Fall
Six friends. Five suspects. One murder.
Savana Caruso and Jesse Melo have known each other since they were kids, so when Jesse texts Savana in the middle of the night and asks her to meet him at Cray’s Warehouse, she doesn’t hesitate. But before Savana can find Jesse, she bears witness to a horrifying murder, standing helpless on the ground as a mysterious figure is pushed out of the fourth floor of the warehouse.
Six teens were there that night, and five of them are now potential suspects. With the police circling, Savana knows what will happen if the wrong person is charged, particularly once she starts getting threatening anonymous text messages.
As she attempts to uncover the truth, Savana learns that everyone is keeping secrets—and someone is willing to do whatever it takes to keep those secrets from coming to light.
I liked a lot of things about this book. First, I liked that the murder doesn’t happen until later in the story. This creates a lot of time for the reader to get to know the person who’s killed, and to get to see the dynamics in the friend group in action. I can’t remember if I’ve read another murder mystery like that before. I can really only think of stories in which the person is murdered either before the story begins or very near to the beginning. So I thought that was a cool, different way to tell this particular story.
The friend group also had some interesting dynamics. I guess the downside of telling a friend group story like this is that it makes for a large cast to introduce all at the beginning. Once I grasped the relationships between the characters, though, I felt like I was able to follow things pretty quickly.
In terms of the mystery– I can honestly say I kept thinking I had it figured out, and I definitely didn’t. I liked that there were clues I could look back at and recognize after I knew what to look for. So that was nicely done, I thought.
I liked the romantic moments, too. It made sense why the characters kind of danced around each other for so long, and I think it also added to my anticipation of seeing them finally work things out between them.
On the whole, I think fans of Diana Urban or Karen McManus will find a fast-paced mystery with a splash of romance in LAST ONE TO FALL.
Recommended for Ages 14 up.
Jesse’s friend Freddie is Black. Jesse’s dad is an alcoholic.
Profanity/Crude Language Content
Extreme profanity used somewhat frequently.
Kissing between boy and girl. Brief sexual assault in one scene when a boy forces himself on a girl, kissing her against her will.
A girl witnesses a person’s fatal fall from a fourth story window. Boys get into a fist fight. In one scene, two boys attack another boy, beating him up. A boy and girl fight, and his behavior certainly has some red flags for abuse. He’s controlling, jealous, and grabs her arm at one point.
School officials find steroids in the locker of one of Jesse’s friends and expel him. Teens drink alcohol at a party.
Note: This post contains affiliate links, which do not cost you anything to use, but which help support this blog. I received a free copy of LAST ONE TO FALL in exchange for my honest review.
This sounds a great mystery. I really appreciate the profanity warning, it does put me off the book (which is a pity, as it seems to be done really well). Thanks for sharing!
Sure thing. I know what you mean. I figure it’s nice to know before picking up a book whether it’s likely to be a good fit. 🙂