Dead Dead Girls is a mystery story set in 1920s Harlem, in which a young black girl who previously freed herself from a kidnapping gets arrested for attacking a police officer while drunk, and offered freedom if she’ll help them solve a murder. I found it difficult to go along with that as a plot point, especially with the detectives treating her like a valued consultant half the time, but the story rolls along pacily enough.
Maybe too pacily, to be honest: there were a few events that should’ve been more affecting than they were, and things I ought to have cared about as a reader, but it felt like everything ticked past too smoothly for me to feel it — and it doesn’t help that there’s something quite simple and matter-of-fact about the narration. It’s a style that works for me sometimes, but didn’t here, and it led to things feeling choppy, disjointed, and sometimes just incongruous. One particular character starts out as an asshole and then… I don’t really understand why he does what he does toward the end of the book.
It’s not a bad read, but it didn’t work for me and it’s not something I feel super-tempted to come back to.