****Trigger Warning: Drug & Alcohol Abuse, Physical/Emotional/Verbal Abuse, Violence, and Gore****
I am a fan of Lukavics’s horror novels and I will pretty much read everything she comes out with. However, I was a bit disappointed with this one and it didn’t live up to what I’ve come to expect from her writing.
**** Note: I am not including the description/synopsis for this book in this review due to the fact that it contains spoilers for the story. I will not be mentioning said spoiler in my review either.****
As I already mentioned above, the blurb spoils the entire plot of the book. Why do people insist on doing this? You could easily write an intriguing synopsis WITHOUT spoilers! Overall this was one of my biggest issues with this book, the fact that there was no suspense at all because I already knew what was happening. It took about 50% of the book to build up to the “reveal” that had already been spoiled!
For the most part the book is very slow paced, I kept waiting and waiting for something more exciting to happen and that didn’t really ever come. As I said it’s hard to be very invested in a plot that’s been spoiled before ever starting the book. Mostly it focuses on a family of five girls whose father is in the military and is always away and whose mother is depressed and an addict. Overall it’s an extremely dysfunctional family and that’s what Lukavics spent the entire book developing. Did it work? Most definitely. Was it interesting? Not really. I came here for the horror not a family drama. The eldest sister and mother are extremely abusive and they made me want to scream and quit reading the book all at once. It was infuriating to read about, I know this was the intention but it all felt like too much and over the top.
The ONE thing I honestly loved about this book was the ending and the “big twist” towards the ending. If there’s one thing I can always count on from Amy Lukavics it’s a killer ending, which I felt that she delivered here as well. It made reading the book feel a little more worth it in the end.
So you’re probably wondering what exactly makes this a horror book? I haven’t mentioned any horror aspects, right? Well, that’s what the plot spoiler is and I don’t want to mention it in my review in case anyone out there is interested in reading this one. I highly, HIGHLY recommend you do NOT read the blurb for the book. I’m sure the book is 10x better going in and not knowing!
I feel like there isn’t much to say about the characters that wasn’t already said. The entire family is dysfunctional, I absolutely loathed Juliet, the eldest sister, and their mother for being manipulative and abusive. As for the other sisters the only ones that were actually more likable were Mona and Rose, who are the more central characters and the other two were…..well a bit more cowardly and passive. The story is told from Mona’s POV and she is one of the most bland characters, I was extremely bored with her as the narrator.
Overall they were unlikable characters and they weren’t very interesting in the long run either.
What I Loved:
- The ending had a great climax and twist, it is left a bit more open ended but I loved it.
What I Didn’t Love:
- Slow pacing
- Spoiler in the synopsis!!!!
- Underwhelming characters
- Virtually nothing happening with the plot throughout the course of the book
I can’t say I can really recommend this one. I do, however, recommend checking out her other two books “Daughters Unto Devils” and “The Women in the Walls” (which were much, much better)if you’re a fan of YA horror. The endings in her books are always worth the read, I know I never see them coming!