Book Review – The Vanishing Stair by Maureen Johnson


Hello Bookworms, this is the sequel to Truly Devious that I recently reviewed. The third book in the series is coming out in 2020.

Genre: Fiction, Mystery

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐(4/5 stars)

Publisher: Published January 22nd 2019 by Katherine Tegen Books

Length: Hardcover, 384 pages

Summary: All Stevie Bell wanted was to find the key to the Ellingham mystery, but instead she found her classmate dead. And while she solved that murder, the crimes of the past are still waiting in the dark. Just as Stevie feels she’s on the cusp of putting it together, her parents pull her out of Ellingham academy. For her own safety they say. She must move past this obsession with crime. Now that Stevie’s away from the school of topiaries and secret tunnels, and her strange and endearing friends, she begins to feel disconnected from the rest of the world. At least she won’t have to see David anymore. David, who she kissed. David, who lied to her about his identity—son of despised politician Edward King. Then King himself arrives at her house to offer a deal: He will bring Stevie back to Ellingham immediately. In return, she must play nice with David. King is in the midst of a campaign and can’t afford his son stirring up trouble. If Stevie’s at school, David will stay put. The tantalizing riddles behind the Ellingham murders are still waiting to be unraveled, and Stevie knows she’s so close. But the path to the truth has more twists and turns than she can imagine—and moving forward involves hurting someone she cares for.

Recommendation:WOW! Once again, I am speechless. In the second installment of Johnson’s Truly Devious trilogy, Maureen Johnson goes above and beyond in developing characters, and storylines. In some way, Johnson creates an immense amount of suspense and tension, that makes it near impossible to set down the book. Many elements in this book made it a worthwhile read, and an amazing sequel. It answered many questions that were left unanswered in Truly Devious and posed many new ones. And if you know me, you know I am anything but patient.  I really enjoyed how the plot progressed and kept readers intrigued. Although I found myself feeling disinterested at the romantic subplot, I was still engrossed in the novel. Finally, a minor inconvenience for me is that  I’m going to have to wait a year for the next installment. How am I supposed to do that? The book was left off in an amazing, but annoying cliffhanger! Overall, The Vanishing Stair was a quick and easy read, and I would recommend it to the ages of 14-18.

A little about the author: Maureen knew from an early age she wanted to be a writer. She went to high school at an all-girls’ Catholic school and graduated from University of Delaware with a degree in writing. She now lives and writes in New York City. Many of the adventures Maureen’s characters face in her books are based on real-life stories. Maureen has traveled all over Europe, and is a Secret Sister to vlogbrothers Hank and John Green.(Goodreads)

Praise for The Vanishing Stair

“In this second . . . installment, Johnson gives and she takes away: a few major
mysteries are satisfying solved, but other long-standing riddles remain tantalizingly indecipherable, and several new ones come into play by the enigmatic end. Readers, hang tight: there’s one more round to come, and if the signs are right, it’ll be to die for.”
— Booklist

“In this second installment of her marvelous Truly Devious series, Maureen Johnson offers thrilling suspense, sly wit, a memorable cast of characters and more pieces of her deliciously intricate puzzle.”
— Buffalo News

Thanks for reading!📚

-Erin

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