Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Book Review | There's Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins

Genre: YA/Horror

Publication Date: 26th September 2017

My Rating: ★★.5

Goodreads Summary:
Scream meets YA in this hotly-anticipated new novel from the bestselling author of Anna and the French Kiss.

One-by-one, the students of Osborne High are dying in a series of gruesome murders, each with increasing and grotesque flair. As the terror grows closer and the hunt intensifies for the killer, the dark secrets among them must finally be confronted.

**No Spoilers**

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I was really intrigued by the idea of this book, mostly because the author, Stephanie Perkins, is well known for her contemporary romance series. I did enjoy her writing in her previous books, so when I heard she was writing a horror novel like Scream, I was definitely interested in picking this up.

I really liked the diversity of the characters (having biracial and trans characters in a YA book is very refreshing). However, while the main character was very fleshed out and her diversity was explored, I felt like the trans character was only briefly mentioned and nothing else to do with their character was particularly explored. I felt like a lot of side characters fell flat, and only Makani and Ollie were explored with any real depth. I also enjoyed the extra mystery surrounding the main characters regarding her past. To be honest, it was the only thing that kept me reading once I got to who the killer was. 

Overall, I was slightly disappointed with this book. While it had its moments of tension, the murders were all very similar and you could tell immediately when one was about to happen. Finding out who the murderer was earlier than I expected to was also a bit of a disappointment. Especially since I didn't feel any shock at finding out who it was. Perhaps if there had been more build up, or some extra characters had been in the story more often, I would've cared more.

Everything was quite stereotypical for a slasher book (where the murders took place, etc.). I also felt like the motive wasn't properly explored and a lot of the murders were just lots of gore for the sake of it. The big reveal of the side mystery was also sadly not as interesting as the build-up to it. I really thought it was going to be something enormous and it just wasn't. 

Overall, I felt like this was an okay horror story. Perkins writing was enjoyable and fast-paced and I was able to read the book in under a day. It will probably frighten people more if they haven't already seen films like Scream or other slasher horrors. I'm sure some people will absolutely love this book, so it's worth picking up for your own opinion, but it just wasn't for me this time.

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Top Five Wednesday | Second Book is Best

This week's Top Five Wednesday is the top five 'second book in a series'. We've talked about series that went downhill, and series that are worth it, but which series were best in the middle? I love this topic because we often talk about how trilogies suffer from 'second book syndrome', aka the worst book in the series because it's a filler. It's refreshing to get to talk about the authors who manage to do this well.

1. The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
I absolutely loved the first two books in this trilogy, but the final book was one of the most disappointing endings I've ever read. I really didn't like the supernatural elements and I feel like it worked so much better as a psychological thriller. This book was so fast-paced and tense. It genuinely made me feel scared and it also completely messed with my head. It was exactly what I wanted the book to be. It was easily the best book in this trilogy.

2. Gormenghast by Mervyn Peake
This is the second book in the Gormenghast trilogy (the first book being Titus Groan). This is a high fantasy trilogy that my sister recommended to me for years. I finally read them this year and loved them. I really enjoyed the highly descriptive language and the characters were fantastically fleshed out. The final book in the trilogy is very strange in a sad way. The author got dementia and it really seeped into his final book. Unfortunately, he died before publication so his son had to compile the final book which is much shorter than the other two. I do love the first book, but the second book is easily the best.

3. Hunger by Michael Grant
The Gone Series by Michael Grant is one of my favourite YA series ever. I do love nearly every book in this series equally but the second book is easily a 5 star book. If you've not picked up this series because you don't want to invest time in a long series, or because you're sick of YA Dystopian, please give these books a go anyway; they are fantastically written and nothing like any other YA I've ever read.

4. Speaker for the Dead by Orson Scott Card
Don't get me wrong, I loved Ender's Game, but Speaker for the Dead blew me away. I know there are issues with this author, but this book was amazing. I loved the exploration into different worlds and the mystery of what is happening on the planet. I've never read anything quite like it before and it left me needing the rest of the series.

5. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
Now, this book is only last on my list because I know it'll be on nearly everyone's list. This is probably the best second book in a series that I've ever read. It's easily the best book in its own trilogy and it's probably one of my favourite books of all time. Sarah J. Maas (despite some issues generally known), can write so well and her characters are fantastic. Rhysand is absolutely wonderful and I loved that she can twist her characters so you see very single side of them. She has a skill for writing incredibly three-dimensional characters that you either love or hate.

So, those are my top five! Let me know what your Top Five are below, or if you have a blog post then link it! Just in case anyone is new to this, Top Five Wednesday was created by Lainey (Gingerreadslainey on YouTube) and is now run my Sam (ThoughtsonTomes on Youtube), so that people can share more of their favourite (or sometimes least favourite) books in an interesting way. Sam creates weekly topics for each month so Bloggers and YouTubers alike to discuss books. The group which lists the monthly topics can be found here! And if you want to see more of my previous Top Five Wednesday Blog posts, you can click here!