The It Girl is the latest novel from prolific author Ruth Ware.
Hannah Jones was a quiet, studious girl, thrilled to have been accepted into one of the Colleges of Oxford University. She immediately is taken with her roommate, the beautiful April Clarke-Cliveden, daughter from a very wealthy family, the ultimate It Girl. The two of them become thick as thieves and gather a very close group of friends who support each other through everything.
And then April is found murdered in their room, and the world changes for Hannah. Hannah has had run-ins with a creepy employee of the university named John Neville, and just before entering the room to find her roommate dead, she sees Neville sneaking away from their apartment building. Hannah testifies in court, and Neville is sent to prison.
Fast forward 10 years, and Hannah, now married to one person from their group of friends and pregnant, learns that Neville has died in prison from a heart attack. His death brings Hannah again face-to-face with the horror of that day. A short time later, she receives a phone call from a reporter who claims to have information that will prove that Neville was innocent.
Hannah’s world begins to crumble, and she begins to wonder if she helped put an innocent man in prison. She begins to investigate on her own, and eventually learns that you can’t always trust those you think you know very well.
The author begins to set the stage for reasons why nearly every one of the group might want April dead. Red herrings abound, ala Agatha Christie. Though I guessed the murderer before he/she was revealed, I was fooled nearly until the very end.
Though I have read almost all of Ware’s novels, and have liked some and felt more neutral about others, The It Girl kept me reading long into the night. It is probably my favorite of her novels thus far, at least the ones that I have read.