“Breakfast Club” meets “Thirteen Reasons Why”: “Dead Girls Society” book review


Kelly Pu, writer

A brain, an athlete, a basket case, a princess and a criminal. No, this isn’t “The Breakfast Club.” This is “Dead Girls Society” by Michelle Krys, a young-adult mystery novel.

Hope is a high school student with cystic fibrosis, a lung disease that compromises her breathing and daily life. She feels smothered by her mother’s overbearing and protective attitude and limited by her family’s lack of money. One night, she receives a mysterious email from the Society, who invite her to play a game of dares with a prize of $100,000. Wanting to break free from her mother and prove her wrong, Hope decides to play the game.

There are four other girls participating in the game of dares. Nikki, the smart girl. Lyla, the sporty girl. Farrah, the rich girl. Harley, the bad girl. And there’s her, Hope, the sick girl. The dares quickly turn dangerous as the stakes get higher. A dare to bungee jump from an abandoned rollercoaster leaves Nikki injured when the coaster breaks down. A dare to swim in a crocodile-infested swamp puts Hope’s life in grave danger. The girls soon find that they are trapped playing the game until the very end.

Hope can’t help but feel that the five girls’ times are running out. Can she figure out who the Society is before they all becomes part of the Dead Girls Society?

“Dead Girls Society” is fast-paced and a quick read; I finished the book in one afternoon. I appreciated that the plot progressed very quickly.

That’s basically all I liked about the book. Everything about the book felt overdone and stereotypical. It’s basically “Breakfast Club” meets “Thirteen Reasons Why.” Krys compares the girls to “Breakfast Club” multiple times in the book, and the whole mystery of determining who the Society is and why the five girls were chosen for the society is very reminiscent of “Thirteen Reasons Why”. Authors: get more creative tropes and plot points!

If you want a book with all the cliche “Breakfast Club” tropes and a mysterious “society” but more character growth and a more interesting story, read “One of Us is Lying” by Karen McManus.

My biggest complaint with the book was that Hope experienced very minimal character growth. In the end, Hope feels no empathy, regret, or blame for what happened. She cares about no one but herself! Krys had a chance warn her readers about consequences of their actions, but she chose to take a completely different route. Ultimately, I felt like I couldn’t relate to any of the characters or even make any sort of connection with them because of this.

If you’re looking for a fluffy, fast-read, “Dead Girls Society” is for you. If you’re not looking for a book filled with stereotypes and cliche plot points, please never read this book.