Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Review: YOU by Caroline Kepnes

YOU is a deliciously terrifying stalker tale that grabbed hold of me on page one and kept me captivated right until the very end. Joe is a young man working at an independent bookstore. Beck, the young woman he meets in the F--K section of the store, is his perfect match in every possible way ... even if she does not realise it. The narrative--told as though Joe is speaking directly to Beck--tells the story of Joe's obsession with Beck and the extent to which he mercilessly stalks her and anyone else who gets in their way. Sealing the deal on the creepiness factor on this stalker tale is the fact that Beck is not entirely innocent herself ...

Caroline Kepnes is a talented author. Her ability to demonstrate the extent of Joe's delusions and Beck's deceptions and make them easily identifiable to the reader without being explicit or obvious is commendable. At times I found myself questioning who was truly calling the shots as Beck's ability to manipulate others--particularly Joe, Peach and Dr Nicky--demonstrated the markings of a psychopath. I also found the many Stephen King and Paula Fox references to be quite appropriate. In many ways, the book feels like a combination of some of the best elements of literary and commercial fiction.

Utterly unputdownable YOU features many twists and turns that kept me guessing about who was the villain and who was the victim right until the gruesome and frightening end. YOU is not a tale for those wanting a happily-ever-after romance. Highly recommended. 

Thank you to Simon and Schuster and Netgalley for my review copy.