Contemporary, Horror

Sweetpea by C.J. Skuse

When I read the premise for this novel, it reminded me of You by Caroline Kepnes, which I had absolutely adored. But in this story, the psychopath is female. I have been so excited to read it so when I got the book, I locked myself in my room with plenty of food, turned off my phone and just read. Here is my review:

Rhiannon is your average girl next door, settled with her boyfriend and little dog…but she’s got a killer secret. Although her childhood was haunted by a famous crime, Rhinannon’s life is normal now that her celebrity has dwindled. She hates her day job as an editorial assistant for a newspaper. And her evenings are filled with boring girl’s night outs. Which gives her plenty of time to make a kill list. From the man on the Lidl checkout to the driver who cuts her off, to the people who actually deserve to die, Rhiannon’s ready to get her revenge. Because the girl everyone overlooks might be able to get away with murder…

The story starts off with a small list of the people who Rhiannon wants to kill and why she wants to kill them. Each chapter has this list in the beginning, and I found it to be quite funny. The people on this “kill list” and her reasons behind putting them on the list are actually quite normal in the sense that all of those things also annoy me very much – just not to the extent that I would kill them for it. Right off the bat, we are introduced to Rhiannon who is a sarcastic and twisted character. She’s quite funny and her diary entries (which is the point of view for the entire story) is quite interesting because she literally just says everything that is on her mind. Now, I don’t mind the idea of having the story told from her perspective but the diary style didn’t really work for me; it made the whole novel more of a comedy, when I was looking for something a bit more scary. I also got quite tired of Rhiannon complaining constantly about the same thing. I mean, really, if you have a problem and you are a psycho killer, why not do something about it? Most of the novel was just her complaining and it really started to annoy me after a while. I just wanted to get to the good plot bits! And while the plot was interesting, I had to get through a lot of mundane things. This novel is about 470 pages …. but it could have been shortened by about 200 pages. There’s a lot of bad language and explicit scenes so consider yourself warned; if you don’t like reading about blood and torture and murder and gore, then stay away from this novel! Overall, I thought that the author created a very sarcastic and darkly humorous character and the story had a really interesting plot. However, it dragged on a bit too much at times and it was hard to stay interested for the entire length of the novel. For those reasons, I’m giving it a 2.5/5 stars, rounded to 3.

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