Saturday, 14 December 2013


Dead Jealous by Sharon Jones

People think of Mother Nature as a gentle lady. They forget that she's also Death...Sixteen-year-old Poppy Sinclair believes in quantum particles, not tarot cards, in Dawkins, not druids. Last summer, in a boating accident in the Lake District, Poppy had a brush with death. But the girl she finds face down in Scariswater hasn't been so lucky. As she fights to discover the truth behind what she believes is murder, Poppy is forced to concede that people and things are not always what they seem and, slipping ever deeper into a web of lies, jealousy and heart-stopping danger, she comes to realise - too late - that the one thing that can save her has been right there, all the time.

I have really got to find out more about books before I buy them. Seriously, impulse buying is not my friend at all. As you can probably guess from that, I didn't enjoy this book. Not one bit. I don't really know why, there isn't an over-riding reason I can point to and say that's what I hated about it, but there were several things that irritated me about it. I guess all added up together, they turned into one big reason.

I had no idea this book was set in the UK. Now, I live in the UK and often bemoan the fact that more contemporary books aren't set here, but the last several that I've read, I really haven't liked. I don't know why that is. At first I thought maybe it was because I was reading American authors writing about the UK and doing a poor job of it, but then I remembered Maureen Johnson's The Name of the Star, a book I love and which is probably the best example of an American writing about Britain that I've come across. Also, Sharon Jones is a Brit, so that can't be it. Maybe it's because British writers are conscious of writing for a global audience and explain things that don't need explaining, emphasise things that are commonplace, and that just annoys me. I don't know. All I can say for sure is that if I'd known this book was set in the UK, I probably wouldn't have read it. And before anyone makes snarky comments about the blurb mentioning the Lake District, I took that from Goodreads and my copy of the book had a different passage as the blurb.

I didn't like any of the characters. Not a one. This can kind of ruin a book for me. It wasn't that they were particularly dislikeable - I adore Parker from Courtney Summers' Cracked Up to Be, and she's considered one of the most dislikeable characters in modern YA - they were just kind of boring and annoying. I didn't care what happened to them or what they thought about things. Mostly I just wanted them to shut up and solve the murder so they could all go home.

And that's the other thing I didn't care a jot about - the murder. The plot, basically. I cannot muster any enthusiasm for this book, I can't think of a single good thing to say about it (although that could be down to me being slow about reviewing it, since the bad things are the ones that tend to stay fresh in my mind and it's been about a month since I read this book). I honestly don't know how I ploughed through to the end.

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