I'm a big fan of Oliver's Delirium series and I LOVED the Replica duology, so if there's a new Oliver book, I'm going to pounce on it. Broken Things is more of a murder mystery, and I love that Oliver branches out so much in her writing.
We have three friends, Summer, Brynn and Mia who are obsessed with a fantasy book called The Way into Lovelorn, and love to play act it out. They decide to write their own fan fic sequel to the book, but their lives change forever when Summer is murdered in a similar ritualistic fashion as they wrote in their Return to Lovelorn sequel. Now both Brynn and Mia are suspects along with their friend, Owen.
This is a story about a troubled girl who, at times, is unlikable, mean, and broken. Other times, she is the glue that holds their friendship together. The magical, beautiful girl that everyone can't help but love. We get clues to Summer's past and her need to believe in the magic and escape of Lovelorn sprinkled throughout the "Then" chapters chronicling the lives and friendships of the girls before Summer is murdered.
In the "Now" chapters we learn how, years later, Brynn, Mia and Owen are dealing with life after being scorned and suspected of murder by their hometown despite the police never having found evidence to pin it on any of them, and their struggle to find the real killer.
As always, Oliver's writing kept me glued to the book, despite a particular scene of animal cruelty involving a cat. I have to admit, that was very hard to get through. I'm the type of person who loves a good murder mystery, but will refuse to watch a movie unless I know for a fact that the animal does not die, otherwise my week is ruined. Kill off all the fictional people you want, just please leave the fictional pets alone, and yes, I know it makes no sense whatsoever.
Oliver is really good at writing characters who are flawed and have many different layers. Each character has their own different struggles and insecurities which are revealed as the story progresses. This book is a bit unsettling, and dark at times, but I felt the ending was satisfying. I especially enjoyed that very last sentence.