Blog Tour Review: Pretty Dead Queens, Alexa Donne

Title: Pretty Dead Queens
Author: Alexa Donne
Genre: Young Adult Thriller
Publishing Date: October 4, 2022

The title is in a scratch white over a picture of a teen girl in a broken picture frame. There is a pink homecoming sash on the table in front of the picture.

About the Book

Seaview High’s homecoming queen is dead . . . and she’s not the first. From the critically acclaimed author of The Ivies comes a nonstop thriller about a decades-old mystery, a copycat killing, and the teen who won’t stop until she discovers the truth.

After the death of her mom (screw cancer), seventeen-year-old Cecelia Ellis goes to live with her estranged grandmother, a celebrated author whose Victorian mansion is as creepy as the murder mysteries she writes. On the surface, life is utterly ordinary in the California coastal town . . . until the homecoming queen is murdered. And she’s not Seaview’s first pretty dead queen.

With a copycat killer on the loose, Cecelia throws herself into the investigation, determined to crack the case like the heroines in her grandmother’s books. But the more Cecelia digs into the town’s secrets, the more she worries that her own mystery might not have a storybook ending. 

Book Links

Book Depository

About the Author

Alexa Donne is the author of sci-fi romance retellings Brightly Burning and The Stars We Steal, as well as the young adult thrillers The Ivies and the forthcoming Pretty Dead Queens, both published by Crown/Random House. A graduate of Boston University, she works in TV marketing and has done pro bono college admissions mentoring since 2014. A true INFJ, in her “free” time she mentors with WriteGirl, runs the Author Mentor Match program, and manages one of the most popular writing advice channels on YouTube. She lives in Los Angeles and you can find her in most places @alexadonne.

Author Links


My Thoughts

Cecilia has lost her mother. Now she’s going to live with her super rich grandmother, Maura, the one her mother cut out of their lives years ago. Everyone in town knows Maura. Not only because everyone knows everyone in this small town, but because she’s a very successful author who got her start writing about a famous murder in the area. But now, someone else has died, and Cecilia was first on the scene. Cecilia wants to get to the bottom of the murder, and in amateur sleuth fashion, this is how the story unfolds.

So, last year, I bought The Ivies, and sadly, it got lost in my TBR, but I’m definitely moving it up the list. I like Cecilia, she’s funny, and she relates well to others. She’s assertive and not afraid to speak up when needed. I like the friends she’s making. It can be tough to start over in a new town, especially a small town where everyone has known each other their whole lives. But people are embracing her, even though she’s stirring up a bit of trouble with her investigation. I like Bronte; she’s a fun character that brings a lot to the story.

Pretty Dead Queens is an inclusive mystery that keeps you guessing the whole way through. The girls are supportive of each other, which had my heart immediately. We need more of that in fiction. I loved it all, from the characters to the setting, to the unraveling of the mystery, this is a super fun read. Thank you, Random House Children’s, and TBR Tours, for sending this along!

Favorite Quotes

“Next thing, you’ll tell me I should have asked my husband not to die, leaving me a single parent. What a failure of bootstrapping.”

“Fine!” I retort, like the petulant child I just insisted I wasn’t.”

“Caring about what’s “cool” is so shallow, passé, but… Omg, did he just do a backflip?”

“Surely no victory could be as sweet as having an empty bladder.”

“They never tell you what dead bodies look like, how actors on TV can never get it right, because the light in their eyes makes it impossible.”

“I can’t take it anymore. I won’t be placated like a stupid child by yet another person who’s lying to me.”

Sounds super fun, right?
Check out the other stops on this tour at TBR and Beyond Tours.


2 thoughts on “Blog Tour Review: Pretty Dead Queens, Alexa Donne

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