Book Review | Don’t Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Title: Don’t Look Back

Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout

Publication Date: April 10, 2014

Genre: Young Adult Mystery

Page Count: 384 pages



You can get the book here: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books-A-Million | Book Depository

Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend, Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all – popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend.

Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it’s one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took “mean girl” to a whole new level, and it’s clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Sam is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She’s getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she’s falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her-even if the old Sam treated him like trash.

But Cassie is still missing, and the truth about what happened to her that night isn’t just buried deep inside of Sam’s memory – someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of that fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive?

— Blurb provided by Goodreads

Don’t Look Back is my first Jennifer L. Armentrout book and I plan to read more books from her. I loved how easily she could pull me into this story. There were so many twists and turns as we try to figure out what happened to Samantha and Cassie. I was intrigued from the moment the mysterious girl is walking down the road and a police officer sees her. It’s like who is this person and why is she all messed up walking down a road alone. And then even after we learn who she is, I am still intrigued because she was missing along with her best friend Cassie. So now I am wondering, well where the heck is Cassie?

Samantha basically can’t remember anything and we follow her as she tries to remember who she was and what her life was like piece by piece. So many questions arise. At various points in the story, you can just about see everyone as a person of interest in Cassie and Samantha’s disappearance except the person that actually had something to do with it. I just don’t know how I missed it to be honest. I just didn’t think that person would be so cruel. But overall, I loved this story and recommend it to anyone who loves young adult and a good mystery novel.

The ending was the most shocking to me because I did not expect for Samantha’s own father to be the one who had to do something with Samantha and Cassie’s disappearance. Or should I say Samantha’s disappearance and Cassie’s death. I just didn’t expect it to be her father. I suspected everyone else. Well everyone except the mother as well. I even suspected her own brother for a little bit. All of this just threw me for a loop and I think that this is the main reason that I loved the book. I could never just quite pinpoint who had something to do with it until it was time for Armentrout to announce it.

The other shocker was the fact that Samantha’s father was also Cassie’s father. Instead of owning up that he had an affair that produce another child, he ignored Cassie. After finding this out, it was obvious why his father never wanted her to hang around Cassie and why Cassie always seemed so jealous of Samantha. Samantha had what Cassie didn’t: their father in her life. Also, the relationship between Cassie and Samantha makes sense after you learn that they are sisters. Their secret rivalry that everyone assumed was going on between the two was nothing more than sibling rivalry.

My Rating: 

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