Thursday, July 12, 2012

Bad Girls Don't Die by Katie Alender

Bad Girls Don't Die

Author: Katie Alender

Publisher: Hyperion

4 out of 5 stars

You open the door to the basement, and you can feel the cold seeping out of it.  The glow of the kitchen behind you ends after the first couple of steps down, and everything beyond it is shrouded in darkness.  You slowly feel your way, down step by step, illuminating what’s in front of you with your flashlight.  The gleam from your flashlight starts to fade, and soon you can barely see the breath in front of your face.  You finally reach the bottom of the stairs after what feels like an eternity.  That’s when it all goes wrong.  The door above you slams shut, your flashlight sputters out, and the temperature drops suddenly.  The panic rises inside of you, and just as you’re about to scream you feel a breath on the back of your neck.  You are not alone.

Alexis’s house is creepy, no doubt about it.  There’s an old, gnarly oak tree out front, the stairs creek, and the wooden shingles look like they’re about to fall right off.  But hey, it makes for some great pictures.  That’s about all Alexis’s house is good for, but after some strange things start happening around the house, Alexis wonders if they’re could be more to her eerie house than she first thought.

Alexis isn’t really considered “normal.”  With bright pink hair, she’s hard to miss, and if the looks don’t put you off, her hostile attitude will.  She hangs out with the “Doom Squad” at school, and even there she doesn’t really fit in.  But despite being weird, Alexis knows that she’s not out of her mind.  Her little sister, Kasey, is possessed.  Full-on, body being used by a demented ghost kind of possessed.  But how can she prove it?

Kasey’s always had an obsession with antique dolls, but other than that she’s a nice kid.  She’s never been as weird as Alexis, but that all starts to change.  Lately Kasey’s been acting shifty, she forgets large periods of time, and even her eyes have been changing from blue to green.  Alexis doesn’t know how to explain it, and no one seems to notice the new person Kasey has become- mean, angry, and out to get revenge.  Alexis has to stop her little sister before it’s too late, but how?  Is Kasey really even herself anymore?  Katie Alender reveals all in her paranormal visit with the undead in, Bad Girls Don’t Die!

Bad Girls Don’t Die had hair-rising moments that had me ready to duck under the covers, where I would be safe from all the nightmares that seemed to come alive in this book.  With Alexis as a witty and sarcastic narrator, despite the frightening, ghostly visits there was always something to laugh about.  There’s never any way of knowing what will come next when it comes to the possessed Kasey, and while reading, I had to be prepared for anything.  I suggest this book for teens fourteen and up, as it can be a bit scary for younger readers.

Alexis’s voice was perfect for Bad Girls Don’t Die.  Even though the book dealt with ghosts and eerie houses, it was never too much with Alexis’s humor thrown in throughout the book.  She always managed to add in a clever comment, and her occasional sarcasm mocked the supernatural aspect of the story perfectly.  When it came down to getting serious, Alexis was able to do that as well and really set aside the cynical comments to get to the bottom of things.  I got to see the real side of Alexis as well throughout the book, and that underneath all of the sarcasm, she really could care about others, and meant well.

I’ve never been fond of clowns, and now I think I’ll have to add antique dolls to that list as well.  Kasey’s obsession with dolls escalated even more as she started to change, causing her to be so protective of them, she couldn’t even have other people be around her precious collection.  Katie Alender did a great job of having me thoroughly spooked throughout Bad Girls Don’t Die.  She threw in the works, complete with creepy dolls, doors randomly opening and closing, the thermostat dropping, an eerie house with a perilous past, and a young girl possessed by a ghost seeking revenge. 

At times the book felt a bit predictable, and some of the spooky plot points could be easily figured out, but Katie Alender always managed to throw a curveball that changed things around.  Things were tied up pretty well at the end of Bad Girls Don’t Die, so I’m interested to see where things go in the sequel, From Bad To Cursed.

Bad Girls Don’t Die is a spooky read that manages to stay light with a witty narrator.  Alexis may be up against more than she can handle when it comes to the dark side.  Join Alexis, as she tries all she can to rid Kasey of her ghost, all the while trying to save herself in, Bad Girls Don’t Die!

-This is T.B. with Another Book Back on the Shelf…
Until Next Time, Keep Reading!

My signed copy of Bad Girls Don't Die from Bridge To Books' YA In Bloom Event! Thanks so much Bridge To Books, and Katie Alender!

Check out my post on the Orange County Children's Book Festival where I also got to see Katie Alender.  You can check out the post here.
Check out Katie Alender's website at


  1. Ahhhh! I just watched a scary movie so this seems even more intense than normal. I'm getting nervous just reading this review. Your description of the creepy dolls and the sister's possession really seem to add to the ghostly atmosphere of the story. Great job!

  2. One of the best books that I have read in a long time! I an downloading the second book as I am typing this! Loved it!


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