Through the help of an uncoventional psychiatrist, Dani begins to heal her broken mind. But will it be too late? The people of her community want justice . . . and Dani's learning that some thoughts are better left unsaid.
The Babysitter Murders was a complex and intriguing look at OCD and the damage it can cause. Dani’s form of OCD was one I hadn’t heard of before and I’m ashamed to say I always think of obsessively washing your hands or checking locks as OCD, when there are even more serious forms of the illness. This was an impressive novel and it opened my eyes to something I knew little to nothing about.
Seventeen year old Dani is haunted by horrifying images and thoughts and she can’t get them out of her head. The most serious of which is she keeps seeing herself killing Alex, the little boy she babysits. And even though Dani adores Alex and would never want to hurt him, she starts to worry that she may actually kill him. The thoughts and visions are soon taking over and Dani is getting more and more worried, so she does the only thing she can think of to keep Alex safe. She confesses that she has been having these thoughts about killing him. Suddenly Dani is the target of extreme haters and groups who think she is a danger to the children of
Dani was a character I liked because she was just so…normal. Except of course for the terrifying thoughts that were haunting her and that she couldn’t escape from. I felt for her because the illness she was dealing with must have been so difficult and she handled it in what she felt was the best way possible. Dani never realized how people would react and that once the truth got out, no one would look at her the same way again. Dani honestly was a sweet and caring teenager and she just had a lot to deal with. She did handle it in the best way she could and luckily she had her mom on her side, as well as a great psychiatrist, and the rest of the secondary characters come in to play big time as the story progresses.
This was a very complex and unique story and I was drawn into Dani’s story and rooting for her throughout. She stayed strong and learned a lot about herself and those around her in the process. There were some interesting sub-plots in the story that added to the overall premise and some twists that kept everything moving.
Overall, The Babysitter Murders was a highly original and complex novel that showed how OCD can impact anyone. Dani was a great main character and I only wanted the best for her.
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
July 26, 2011/Atheneum/304 Pages/Young Adult
Source: Author (ARC)