ARC · book review · NetGalley · Simon & Schuster

Limetown: The Prequel to the #1 Podcast by Zack Akers, Skip Bronkie, and Cote Smith

Limetown: The Prequel to the #1 Podcast

3 Stars

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Date of publication: November 13th, 2018

Genre: Mystery, Thriller

Where you can find Limetown: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Goodreads synopsis:

From the creators of the #1 podcast Limetown, an explosive prequel about a teenager who learns of a mysterious research facility where over three hundred people have disappeared—including her uncle—with clues that become the key to discovering the secrets of this strange town.

On a seemingly ordinary day, seventeen-year-old Lia Haddock hears the news that will change her life forever: three hundred men, women, and children living at a research facility in Limetown, Tennessee, have disappeared without a trace. Among the missing is Emile Haddock, Lia’s uncle.

What happened to the people of Limetown? It’s all anyone can talk about. Except for Lia’s parents, who refuse to discuss what might have happened there. They refuse, even, to discuss anything to do with Emile.

As a student journalist, Lia begins an investigation that will take her far from her home, discovering clues about Emile’s past that lead to a shocking secret—one with unimaginable implications not only for the people of Limetown but for Lia and her family. The only problem is…she’s not the only one looking for answers.

Zack Akers and Skip Bronkie are first-rate storytellers, in every medium. Critics called their podcast Limetown “creepy and otherworldly” (The New York Times) and “endlessly fun” (Vox), and their novel goes back to where it all began. Working with Cote Smith, a PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize Finalist, they’ve crafted an exhilarating mystery that asks big questions about what we owe to our families and what we owe to ourselves, about loss, discovery, and growth. Threaded throughout is Emile’s story—told in these pages for the first time.


My review:

Lia is a high school senior when she hears the news about Limetown. Limetown is a town where three hundred people disappeared without a trace. Among those who disappeared, Lia’s estranged uncle, Emile. Fueled by the need to find out what happened, Lia starts an investigation. What she finds during her investigation makes her question everything that she has been told. What happened at Limetown? Why is Emile at the center of it? How is her mother involved? Who can Lia trust? Where did those people go?

I was pretty excited to start reading Limetown. Even though I haven’t heard the podcast, I figured that I could follow the prequel easy enough. I mean, prequels give information that’s isn’t known in series that follows. Yeah, well that didn’t happen. While Limetown was an interesting read, it left me with more questions than answers.

I didn’t care for Lia. She came across as self-centered the entire book. I did admire her tenacity. She stuck with finding out with what happened to the people in Limetown and her uncle Emile. But her personality was awful. There are very few times where I don’t like the main character and this is one of them. I also didn’t get why she treated her mother the way she did when she found certain things out. She failed to see that everything her mother did was for her. Saying that I do wonder what she is like in the podcast.

I did like Emile. Actually, I pitied him for 75% of the book. His ability made him an outsider. Anytime he even got close to someone, they either got hurt or turned out to be not what he thought they would be. Even his relationship with Lia ended up badly and she was a baby. I did wonder what happened to him at Limetown at the beginning of the book. I can’t say what I thought by the end of the book because I will give away the ending. Let’s say that any pity I felt for Emile went out the window.

I did find the storylines well written. But they failed to hold my attention. My mind kept wandering off mid-paragraph and I had to force myself to focus on reading. Which, in turn, took away from my pleasure in reading the book.

The end of Limetown confused the heck out of me. This is where I wish I had listened to the podcast because I had zero clue what was going on. But, I did know that Lia’s foray to Limetown wasn’t going to end up well. I didn’t expect it to go that bad.


I have Limetown a 3-star rating. I thought the book was well written and an interesting read. But, it failed to hold my attention and left me with more questions than answers. Even though it is a prequel, I would recommend listening to the podcast first.

I would give Limetown an Adult rating. There is no sex. There is violence. There is language. There are triggers. They are child abuse, drug use, parental abandonment, the death of a parent, unsolved disappearances of the loved one. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21.

I am undecided if I would reread Limetown. I am also undecided if I would recommend this book to family and friends.


I would like to thank Simon & Schuster and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review Limetown.

All opinions stated in this review of Limetown are mine.

**I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**


Have you read Limetown?

Love it? 

Hate it?

Meh about it?

Let me know!!!

5 thoughts on “Limetown: The Prequel to the #1 Podcast by Zack Akers, Skip Bronkie, and Cote Smith

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