Thursday, June 14, 2018

Book Review: Follow Me Back

Title: Follow Me Back (Follow Me Back #1)
Author: A.V. Geiger
Genre: Young Adult | Mystery | Thriller
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Publication Date: June 6, 2017
Source: Publisher
Format: Physical

Tessa Hart’s world feels very small. Confined to her bedroom with agoraphobia, her one escape is the online fandom for pop sensation Eric Thorn. When he tweets to his fans, it’s like his speaking directly to her…
Eric Thorn is frightened by his obsessive fans. They take their devotion way too far. It doesn’t help that his PR team keeps posting to encourage their fantasies.
When a fellow pop star is murdered at the hands of a fan, Eric knows he has to do something to shatter his online image fast—like take down one of his top Twitter followers. But Eric’s plan to troll @TessaHeartsEric unexpectedly evolves into an online relationship deeper than either could have imagined. And when the two arrange to meet IRL, what should have made for the world’s best episode of Catfish takes a deadly turn…
Told through tweets, direct messages, and police transcripts (goodreads).


Follow Me Back was suspenseful. 
Plot: Follow Me Back utilized many different formats to create a suspenseful read about a budding online romance and a potential stalker. Admittedly, Follow Me Back felt a bit juvenile and overall kind of gross because of the possessive language the fans of Eric Thorne used. He only existed for this online horde to speculate about his life and save extremely sexy photos to their phones. What I liked about Follow Me Back was the insertion of tweets and police transcripts, those definitely kept it interesting especially since the transcripts were after the incident so they served to feed the reader clues. Follow Me Back also had an explosive ending with a killer cliffhanger that will have you demanding answers almost immediately, luckily for us the sequel, Tell Me No Lies, just came out!

Characters: In my opinion, the true mystery of Follow Me Back was Tessa. She went away to an arts program and abruptly ended her overnight program two weeks in and fled back home where she refused to leave her home. Her diagnosis of agoraphobia seemed very sudden and I had a lot of questions about her past triggers. Of course, her refusal to leave her house put some strain on her existing relationships but she at least had her understanding therapist to help her along the way. And let me just say, I hated her therapist! For an adult professional, she made some super shady judgment calls when I was expecting her to be the voice of reason. 

Worldbuilding: Follow Me Back took place in Midland, Texas with the majority of the action happening through Twitter. While I loved the concept, I thought that Geiger made it too easy to make this book outdated. There were a lot of references to pop culture like Ariana Grande and One Direction, and I could see those references becoming outdated in the next five years. For example, a character was crafting his message in twitter and made mention about how he had to fit everything he wanted to say in 140-characters or less. That 140-character twitter limit is no longer relevant which made Follow Me Back feel older than it actually was. 

Short N Sweet: While lacking in some aspects, Follow Me Back was both a creepy and surprising read. 

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