Published August 7th 2018 by Freeform
Holy crap, this book was terrific.
This had to have been the most fun I have had reading a book. I felt like I was in a Saw movie…or a twisted video game with bizarre bosses that needed defeating. Needless to say, I was quite entertained.
So, Dee lives in a world where a reality star President (hahahaha) greenlights a program where convicts go to an island (Alcatraz 2.0 aptly named) to fight off against serial killers who are sent to the island to kill them off. Sort of like a really messed death penalty. But televised. Dee is sent there after the murder of her step-sister, which she says she didn’t do. There’s also a weird backstory of her being kidnapped as a kid that ties into the plot.
Let me cut in and say that one of my favorite movies of all time is Battle Royale. You know, the original kids killing kids on an island story. So, that being said, I am a fan of the pure fun that is mindless violence and the strain of survival when everything is stacked up against you. There are a lot of dystopian books with similar plots, but this one stands out as it ties in with current trends such as social media and the world’s obsession with violence. What is scary about the book is that at this current state of the country, none of it seemed all that far-fetched. Hey, maybe there’s something wrong with me that I get excited about the prospect of someone being torn apart by animals or running around in a princess dress taking down serial killers. I mean, it’s all in good fun. Blood and gore and violence, oh my.
The book is fast paced, filled with action. With it being pretty gory, I want to say this is not a YA book, BUT it’s no more than what teenagers see on the news in the real world, so I am not jumping on that bandwagon of censorship. I grew up reading Clive Barker and Stephen King, so this is cake compared to books like Desperation or Books of Blood. At times, it did feel a little silly and Dee’s reactions a little flat, but the writing was excellent and the pacing was top-notch.
This is the first book I’ve read by Gretchen, but I am going to go back and see what else has to offer.