"You must become so free that your very existence is an act of rebellion." -Albert Camus
This is f***king awesome. (Pretend I'm Macklemore.)
This book... is a mess. The reader is told the story by a very unreliable sixteen year old narrator named Dinah who is on a mission: destroy the boy who destroyed her cousin. After her cousin, Claire, committed a botched suicide attempt, Dinah found her diary; a diary which contained very detailed events of what had happened to Claire before her suicide attempt; a diary which contained the name of the same boy over and over: Brooks Walden. So, Dinah loses the black hair, the piercings and the gothic clothes and dons knee socks, bleached hair and a clean face all in the hope of enacting her sweet, cold revenge.
I was addicted to this book for the five days I listened to it. I normally listen to my audiobook CDs in the car, but I shoved my earphones in and listened to this book on my phone while I drove, cooked dinner, went for walks... basically as I lived out my daily life. And it was so worth it. I feel like listening to this book gave me a different experience than reading it. It was like watching a thriller movie. I was on the edge of my seat (or toes) the entire time, yelling at the main character, rolling my eyes and slapping my hand over my mouth in horror. Some books are meant to be listened to.
Dinah made me uncomfortable with her poorly planned vendetta and single minded determination to ruin a boy's life, but I couldn't help but like her a little. This girl certainly doesn't do anything half-assed. I actually liked all of the characters and felt like they all had many different - and interesting - layers to them. I must admit that I saw the "twist" coming from the moment our narrator met her perp, but I have to wonder if that wasn't the author's intention. There were so many clues throughout that it felt like she wanted the reader to know what would happen... we just had to wait for Dinah to figure it out.
Reading a book that like is interesting because it makes it difficult to not get bored when you know what's ahead, but somehow McQuien kept me interested. I liked hearing how far this girl would go to deal out the justice that she thought was so duly deserved, and I also liked hearing about her reservations with her own convictions. Dinah felt very real.
Recommended to people who enjoy thriller stories, YA Contemporary stories or just want to read a well-written YA once in a while.