The Murder of Bindy Mackenzie is the third installment in the Ashbury series by Jaclyn Moriarty although the books are just loosely connected and they can be read out of order. I’ve read and liked the first two Ashbury books – Feeling Sorry for Celia and The Year of Secret Assignments. I decided to pick this one up since it’s available in Fully Booked for P420.
Here’s the summary from Goodreads:
To prove her likeability, Bindy decides to document her life in transcripts, essays, and e-mails. What this reveals is a girl who’s funny, passionate, hilariously self-righteous… and in danger.
Someone wants to kill Bindy Mackenzie. The clues are in the documents. The detectives are the very students who hate her most. And time is running out.
This one is different from the other two because it doesn’t concentrate on the “Joy of the Envelope” letter exchange program between the two schools, Ashbury and Brookefield. Instead, the story is told from Bindy’s point of view through her diary entries, reports about her Friendship and Development (FAD) sessions and her random musings. Bindy is the type of character that you’d either really love or really hate. At the start of the book, she’s pretty easy to dislike because she’s so full of herself. However, I found her funny because she’s such a character! If you don’t take her seriously, I think you’ll see that she’s hilarious. She’s puzzled most of the time because she doesn’t understand other people. She lacks social skills so she doesn’t have friends and she’s totally focused on school work. The first part was pretty slow for me but things started to pick up in the second half of the book and by the time I reached the last few chapters, I knew I had to stick with it until the end – meaning I had to stay up until past 1am even though I wake up at 5am for work.
As with the other two Jaclyn Moriartys that I’ve read, this one is about friendship. I like how the three books deal with different kinds of friendship. In Feeling Sorry for Celia, it was all about best friends. In The Year of Secret Assignments, it was about the loyalty of a small group of three friends. In this one, it’s about forming friendships with a whole group. Like I said, Bindy doesn’t really have any friends and she thinks the FAD sessions are a waste of valuable time because she’d rather study. This book is all about Bindy and how she learns more about herself by reaching out to her fellow classmates. Another humorous installment in Jaclyn Moriarty’s Ashbury series. What’s good about this one is that it gives glimpses of the main characters in the first two books – Elizabeth from Feeling Sorry for Celia and Emily from The Year of Secret Assignments.