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I Belong

Review: Don’t Look Now by Michelle Gagnon

Don't Look NowTitle: Don’t Look Now

Author: Michelle Gagnon

Genre: YA Thriller/Mystery

Series: PERSEF0NE (Book #2)

Publication Date: August 27, 2013

FormatHardcover, 336 Pages

ISBN-10: 0062102931 (HarperTeen)

ISBN-13: 978-0062102935 (HarperTeen)

Reviewed by: Bridget


Noa Torsen is on the run. Having outsmarted the sinister corporation Pike & Dolan, Noa and her friend Zeke now move stealthily across the country, protecting runaways before they become test subjects for P&D’s horrific experiments. Noa knows all too well what that feels like: Whatever they did to her has left her exhausted and scared.

Back in Boston, Peter anxiously follows Noa’s movements from his computer, using his hacker skills to feed her the information she needs to stay alive. But he’s desperate to do something more, especially when he learns what P&D has done to his ex-girlfriend Amanda.

Then, in an explosive confrontation, Noa and her team are trapped in the one place they thought was safe. It will take everything Noa and Peter have to bring down the corporation before it gets them first. And with no one to trust and enemies hiding at every turn, they may be the only people alive who can.

This stunning second book in the critically acclaimed Don’t Turn Around trilogy raises the stakes to their absolute limit and will leave readers begging for the exciting conclusion, Don’t Let Go!

Quick & Dirty: Action-packed story full of suspense, mystery, and romance. Once I picked this up I couldn’t put it down!

Opening Sentence: “I thought California was supposed to be warm,” Zeke grumbled, rubbing his arms.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Noa Torsen was lucky to escape from the evil corporation P&D. They are kidnapping children and performing medical experiments on them. But not everyone is as lucky as Noa and she wants to help. With a group of kids called Persephone’s army and her new friend Zeke, she is traveling across the country leading raids on the labs that hold the test experiments. Saving kids in any way they know how, but it still doesn’t seem to be enough. Bringing down the corporation is harder than they could have ever imagined and they are still hunting Noa.

Peter is back in Boston helping the best way he can by hacking into computers. He is feeding information to Noa’s group on where all the labs are, and trying to help keep Noa alive. But sitting in Boston pretending to live his normal life makes him feel useless and he is desperate to do something more. Once he learns that they have done something horrible to his ex-girlfriend Amanda, he decides that he can no longer sit ideally by as they try and destroy his world.

Noa is a very strong girl with a great voice.  She has had a pretty rough childhood but what I love about her is that even though she has been dealt a crappy hand in life she doesn’t just sit and take it. She fights back in every way she knows how, and I really admired that about her. Yes, she’s scared and feels inadequate at times but she never lets that stop her from doing the right thing. I think she was the perfect heroine. She shows a much more vulnerable side to her personality which made her a well rounded character. It is really important in a sequel for the author to re-establish your original connection with the character, but it is equally important to expound and deepen that connection. I thought that Gagnon did a great job hitting all of those elements perfectly with Noa.

It was hard to watch Peter just sit on the sidelines. He is still contributing greatly to the cause but most of the time he feels like he’s not doing nearly enough. He is constantly worrying about everyone he cares about in his life. I enjoyed seeing the vulnerable side of Peter, and it was easy to sympathize with his situation. But I really missed Peter and Noa time, the only contact they have is through the computer and it is very little. It was good to see each character develop more individually but you don’t get to see much of their relationship, which I was really hoping for after finishing the first book. But it was set up nicely to where hopefully we get more of them in the third book.

There is a large group of secondary characters that have a huge role in the story as well. The first is Amanda; she hasn’t felt the same since she was kidnapped. Everything in her life has started to fall apart, she is failing school and Peter is obsessed with helping Noa. She wants to help as well and even though she broke up with Peter she still has feelings for him. I actually really liked Amanda and I am intrigued to see where her story goes. Another important secondary character is Zeke. You get to know a lot more about him and his background. He obviously has a thing for Noa and I actually thought that they were pretty cute together (even though I am totally team Peter). Overall, Zeke was an interesting guy and I am interested to know the rest of his story.

Don’t Look Now is a heart pounding story full of action, suspense, and a little bit of romance. From the moment I picked up the book it was impossible to put down and I ended up finishing it far too quickly. The story is told from multiple POV’s, which usually isn’t my favorite but Gagnon did a wonderful job making me love and connect to each individual character. The plot took some very interesting turns that kept the suspense running high through the whole book. Honestly, there really isn’t a single bad thing I can say about this book and I can’t wait for the final book in the series. If you like stories with lots of action and intrigue I would highly recommend you give this series a try.

Notable Scene:

Whatever he was about to threaten them with was abruptly cut off by a muffled boom from within the building. The crowd fell silent.

The guard’s head snapped around. He released Teo’s hand and scrambled through the crowd, forcing his way toward the building.

Daisy’s eyes had gone wide. “What was that?”

“I don’t know,” Teo said, puzzled. There hadn’t been any mention of an explosion in the plan, and that’s what it had sounded like—a big one, too.


0.5 No Escape

1. Don’t Turn Around

2. Don’t Look Now

3. Don’t Let Go (August 26, 2014)


FTC Advisory: HarperTeen provided me with a copy of Don’t Look Now. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.


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