Thursday, September 4, 2014

The Death Of Us by Alice Kuipers

The Death Of Us by Alice Kuipers
Release Date - September 2, 2014
Publisher Website - Harper Collins
Publisher Social Media - Twitter/Facebook/SavvyReader/Frenzy
Pages -  288 pages
My Rating - 3.5/5
**received in exchange for an honest review from the publisher**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
A recovered friendship, a dark secret, and a love triangle with a deadly angle…

Callie is shocked when her friend Ivy reappears after an unexplained three-year absence, but the girls pick up where they left off, and suddenly Callie's summer is full of parties, boys and fun. Beneath the surface, things aren't what they seem, however, and when a handsome boy with a dark past gets tangled up with Ivy, the girls' history threatens to destroy their future.
There are some books you devour in one sitting. There can be many different reasons for this. The Death Of Us was one I flew through because I needed to know what happened next. I needed to know what the outcome of this twisted, downward spiraling triangle would be.

Choices. They are something that we all make each day. Some are tiny, insignificant choices like what we'll have for breakfast. Others are huge, life altering decisions like moving to a new city. There are other types of choices though - the ones that may not seem significant until it's too late. Sometimes it's it's a bunch of little choices that impact one another and send us spiral towards a collision with no mean of stopping the crash. In the end our life is a result of all the choices we've made; big and small. Alice Kuipers adeptly shows the consequences of choices, even those that are unforeseen at first. She has the reader playing 'what if' as fateful events begin to unravel. The notion of 'change something and you change everything' is something that is felt throughout this novel.

The strongest element in this story was the author's ability to create a tension. It's something that starts subtly and increases as you race towards the ending. You know something is going to happen, and that in itself creates a need to continue reading. The use of three different narrators served to further the mystery aspect of the story, but limited our time with each of the characters. The pacing and story benefited but it was at the cost of the characterization and none of the voices really stood out.

That being said, the characters are all had something about them that was interesting. Callie and Ivy's friendship in particular was well crafted. The ebbs and flows of this type of friendship are strikingly captured, and a little of each of the girl's personalities are revealed through this relationship. My only minor issue was that I did not feel that I got to know the characters as well as I wanted to. The whys behind what they did often alluded me. Kurt, in particular, didn't feel expanded upon. However, the story was engrossing enough for me to be pulled in regardless of the character connection.

Breaking free from your past is a strong theme in the novel. Ivy's trying to outrun her past. Callie is struggling with something she can't even admit to herself, and Kurt struggling with where he belongs. Each of them has something they'd rather hide from, or not admit. Drugs, sexuality, broken homes, mental illness. These are some dark, but relevant issues that they are dealing with, even if they just briefly touched upon. It makes for a dizzying, quick read that packs a lot into it's rather short page count.

A juicy, twisted love triangle with a deadly conclusion. The Death Of Us is filled with tension, and secrets that create a delicious page turner. A shorter read that would have benefited with some expansion, but an otherwise overly enjoyable read.

1 comment:

  1. I don't normally love stories with multiple narrators, but it sounds like this one worked out okay. I'm curious... is this more NA or adult? I don't normally love contemporary fiction, but this one might be worth looking into. Thanks for sharing!

    Tracy @ Cornerfolds


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