Rachel Watts has just moved to Melbourne from the country, but the city is the last place she wants to be. James Mycroft is her neighbour, an intriguingly troubled seventeen-year-old who’s also a genius with a passion for forensics.
Despite her misgivings, Rachel finds herself unable to resist Mycroft when he wants her help investigating a murder. When Rachel and Mycroft follows the murderer’s trail, they find themselves in the lion’s den – literally. A trip to the zoo will never have quite the same meaning again…
The Every Series is so well known in Australian YA that it’s amazing I hadn’t read it until now. Trust me I felt the pressure and how not reading these books left me out of the conversation. Well all that’s changed now!
This is a series revolving around neighbours, Rachel Watt and James Mycroft, who attend the same local high school and fall into an easy friendship unexpectedly. Mycroft is a bit out there, he studies forensics and science, has a smoking problem and never speaks about his past. Rachel is struggling to cope with living in the city, she misses her country home and lifestyle and overall doesn’t like what the move has done to her family.
Every Breath details how the pair is linked when they share in the unfortunate event of discovering a dead body. Mycroft, immediately intrigued wants to investigate, while Watts just wants to come to terms with it all. Picking up on the Sherlock vibes yet?
Yes there are a lot of deliberate Sherlock easter eggs in these books, if you’ve read the original Sherlock books, or seen any version of the TV series you’ll pick up on them. And it was an added layer I really enjoyed. As a reader from outside the target age group I appreciated another layer of depth and intertextuality.
This was the first murder/mystery book I’ve read in a really long time and I really appreciated the pace, the story moves very quickly, never leaving us in one place for too long and I really enjoyed that. It was a refreshing change from the slower introspective contemporary fiction I’ve read lately. While there is still a fair amount of internal exposition, it’s broken up largely by plot, so it never feels like there’s too much of it in any one place.
Another element I really enjoyed was the relationship between Mycroft and Watts. There’s so much tension there, with so many words left unsaid, long pauses and glances. THAT TENSION! Loved it.
The investigation in each book leads to a lot of science being broken down for the reader, but the explanations aren’t full on, there’s enough detail there to feel like you’ve learnt something without it feeling like you’re in a boring science lesson. I liked it to the amount of info you’d get in a crime TV Show, just enough to be plausible, but not enough that you feel overwhelmed or confused by the science.
I have since finished all three books in this series and without giving away any spoilers, I feel like Ellie does a great job of staying true to the successful parts of the first book; the captivating and exciting plot, the integral relationship between Mycroft and Watts and the explanation of the science.
If you like fast paced stories, with mystery or intrigue, and characters just capture your emotions, pick up the Every Series. You won’t be disappointed.
4 stars out of 5 (for each book in the series!)
Loving reading some #OzYA, got any recommendations of #OzYA for me? Love to hear it. Or just a good book rec in general. Always on the hunt for great new books. ❤