This is a perfect Halloween read but I’d say it was more creepy with a slow building tension than out and out horrific. Although a few scenes may turn your stomach! Personally I found Gretchen’s mother’s attitude to books the most horrific thing in the book.
Abby and Gretchen first meet at Abby’s ET themed 10th birthday party, to which Gretchen is the only class member to turn up. Their friendship develops from there until the fateful night where everything changes. Don’t do drugs ladies or you’ll get possessed by a demon.
After a failed acid trip Gretchen turns from sour emo to grade A bitch. Think Heathers on steroids. But Abby stands by her and gradually works out what is going on with the help of someone whose demon vision is super-powered. The exorcist is a beefcake called Brother Lemon who reminds me of Edgar Frog from The Lost Boys in his intensity. Are he and Abby successful in saving Gretchen against all odds? You’ll just have to read to find out.
This was a witty, fun and surprisingly emotional read. Definitely one for ‘Be Kind Rewind and Read Again’.
Perfect for fans of the 80s, of Stranger Things and for people that enjoy reading about the power of female friendship. Each chapter heading references an 80s song and there’s even a Spotify playlist available. I just need this to be a movie now.
Thanks to Jamie-Lee and Quirk for the copy for the purposes of review. All the flailing above is my own.
I picked up Riot Days as a memoir by one of the Pussy Riot group who were imprisoned in Russia for protesting. I had hoped to better understand their experience but unfortunately the structure of the book didn’t work for me.
Initially I was trying to read the Advanced copy via my kindle app and I wondered if the formatting was making it difficult to read so I switched to a PDF version which was easier but still strange.
Each chapter was split into short sections with bold headings but I couldn’t work out the placement of these because sometimes they seemed to relate to what had been written before and sometimes to what came next.
The text itself was almost like a cross between poetry and prose with short paragraphs and a disjointed style, more like a stream of consciousness. It left me very confused about what was happening as timelines crossed.
There were a few illustrations used, and I’m not sure if these were drawn by Maria but they were very childish and I don’t think they added anything to the narrative.
The final two chapters were the most informative and seemed to be more linearly structured. In these Maria shares with us how she challenged the injustices in the prison she was in through her legal representation and made life better for the inmates.
The start didn’t really help me understand exactly what the initial protest was for and so I experienced a disconnect with her plight , which was undoubtedly traumatic. To be honest it left me wanting to go back and read news items about it instead. I wonder if this is a case of lost in translation.
I did like this quote though
“There is no certainty or predictability. There is no fate. There is a choice. My choice and yours, in each moment that demands it.”
I received an e-copy from the publisher via Netgalley. Opinions are my own.