Throwaway Girls by Andrea Contos is a sapphic murder mystery that you didn’t know you needed. We follow Caroline as she tries to solve the disappearance of her best friend Madison. Through emotional highs and lows, surprising twists, and unexpected friendships- this book takes you on an exciting journey.
TW: Conversion therapy, murder, probably other things but, mentions of conversion therapy and details of it feels important to notify of.
“Detective Harper is a liar. That score to settle goes back nearly three years. And if there’s one thing I’m sure of, it’s this: if things are ever going to be right again, it’s not Detective Harper who’s going to get them there.”
This book had me on the edge of my seat, feeling worried and heartbroken for Caroline. As she navigates the PTSD from being forced into a conversion therapy camp and also trying to solve the mystery of her best friend’s disappearance- you start to wonder if she’s unraveling. The narration of Caroline, her passion, her anger, and her determination left me feeling her same feelings.
Throwaway Girls touched on important topics for a thriller. Specifically, how our justice system often minimally looks into the disappearances of girls who are from low-income families, while making a scene of looking into children of richer, well-known families. How cops and the justice system will commonly abuse this system, and, get away with it. This time, they don’t get away with it.
Not all books end in the character suddenly no longer having issues. The book ends and Caroline is still hurt, and still angry. I can appreciate this because it takes so much time to heal and grow from traumatic instances. People genuinely do care about Caroline though. You can see that throughout the book- despite them not always showing it in the best of ways.
The Who-dun-it aspect of this book was really well done, I was genuinely surprised when it all tied together and wrapped up. Andrea Contos has set the bar with Throwaway Girls as her debut novel and I cannot wait for more.