Pippa Fitz-Amobi has always been known as a hard-working, straight-A student, whose only flaw is that she’s kind of a borderline perfectionist. So when she decided to revisit a local murder as the centerpiece of her senior capstone project—which is Fairview High School’s version of a senior thesis—everyone was a bit surprised.
Why would she want to dig into such an uncomfortable and disturbing topic? The murder happened five years ago. And everyone knows it’s an open and shut case: An innocent and well-liked schoolgirl named Andie Bell was killed by her boyfriend Sal Singh. He even admitted his guilt before taking his own life.
The school officials don’t like the idea one bit. But … Pip being Pip, they allow it. Especially since she promises to focus more on how the media shaped the investigation. That angle could have some merit.
What no one realizes, however, is that Pip isn’t focusing on the media at all. She knew Sal back when she was just a little girl. He’d supported her when she was being bullied in middle school. And she just never believed he was the stone-cold killer that everyone thought he was. Not only that, but she’s hated how the community treated Sal’s family after the case was closed. Besides, there were just too many loose ends to the investigation, in Pip’s opinion. Too many things that seem a bit off.
As Pip starts gathering the details—digging into police reports, interviewing Sal and Andie’s friends and organizing all the bits and pieces—one thing starts to become clear: No one in this case is exactly who they seem to be. And though Pip never believed that she could rush in and solve a murder better than the pros, she starts to think that her investigation might raise enough questions to at least suggest that Sal wasn’t who everyone thought he was.
There’s only one problem. If Pip is right, if Sal isn’t a killer, then there’s likely someone else still in town who is! And that particular person won’t be very happy if one Pippa Fitz-Amobi starts uncovering secrets that they want to stay hidden.