ARC Review | Bad Call by Stephen Wallenfels

Combo34321949Something in his voice doesn’t sound right. There’s a darker intent behind his smile, and she sees it sparking in his eyes.

Published: December 19, 2017

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Pages: 320

Series: N/A – Standalone


4 Stars

It’s like we’re floating on a raft in a slow-motion current with the uneasy rumble of something big around the bend.


During a late-night poker game, tennis teammates Colin, Ceo, Grahame, and Rhody make a pact to go on a camping trip in Yosemite National Park. And poker vows can’t be broken.

So the first sign that they should ditch the plan is when Rhody backs out. The next is when Ceo replaces him with Ellie, a girl Grahame and Colin have never even heard of. And then there’s the forest fire at their intended campsite.
But instead of bailing, they decide to take the treacherous Snow Creek Falls Trail to the top of Yosemite Valley. From there, the bad decisions really pile up.

A freak storm is threatening snow, their Craigslist tent is a piece of junk, and Grahame is pretty sure there’s a bear on the prowl. On top of that, the guys have some serious baggage (and that’s not including the ridiculously heavy ax that Grahame insisted on packing) and Ellie can’t figure out what their deal is.

And then one of them doesn’t make it back to the tent.
Desperate to survive while piecing together what happened, the remaining hikers must decide who to trust in this riveting, witty, and truly unforgettable psychological thriller that reveals how one small mistake can have chilling consequences.


First, I just want to say a giant thank you to NetGalley, Disney-Hyperion, and Stephen Wallenfels for providing me with and ARC of this awesome book! This is my first ARC ever and I’m beyond thankful for the opportunity and excited to see what else NetGalley can offer me!

I went into this book thinking it would just be about a camping trip between friends where some drama is revealed and someone disappears only to be found later. Boy, was I wrong. Don’t let the description fool you; this book is deep. Being fresh out of my teen years myself (I’m 20, so this was me only two years ago) I found the writing and characters very realistic. I mean, it really reminded me of hanging out with my friends back in high school. The writing style and the characters’ personalities reminded me of a John Green book. It was awesome and I felt instantly connected and comfortable with the characters, so bravo to the author for creating such realistic, complex, and interesting characters.

This book did really confuse me at first for this simple reason; all the stuff  happens in the last like 40% of the book. So the first 60% or so is all lead up to the action in the back half and while I did think the book was a really slow-building type of book it didn’t bother me because I was enjoying it so much. If the characters and drama and setting weren’t so amazing I probably wouldn’t have liked it as much as I did, but all the build up and back story is so needed to really drive this book home. And boy, was that last 40% crazy.

The conclusion of this book was chilling, and I’m not just talking about the snow storm. I genuinely had goose-bumps during the last chapter or so. Stuff wasn’t adding up, things kept getting creepier and more dangerous, and the stakes were getting as high as the snow levels. I just wanted to keep reading and reading and get some answers, and while the ending isn’t ‘happy’, it is definitely satisfying.

I would recommend this book to high school aged young adults because of the language and some of the sex and drug references, but I would definitely be on the look out for this book next year if you’re interested in young adult thrillers. The writing was phenomenal, the plot was great, and the characters were intriguing. Definitely recommend!

Happy reading


Book Links  GoodreadsAmazon                    B&N         BAM


Other Novels by Stephen Wallenfels



3 thoughts on “ARC Review | Bad Call by Stephen Wallenfels

  1. Pingback: Author Interview: Stephen Wallenfels – Belle's Book Blog

  2. Pingback: Author Interview | Stephen Wallenfels | Tonkin About Books

  3. Pingback: Recommendations | Fall Reads | Tonkin About Books

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