Monday, June 16, 2014

A Battling of the Bookworms Review: Kelly Hill by Laura Gibson

So there once was this girl and her name was Laura.  Laura loved selfies.  Laura tweeted me a selfie and I knew we had to be friends.  And we are. Friends.  Do you think I should tell her? Ha! Just joking. Maybe. Anyway, I have had the privilege to read Laura's upcoming release, Kelly Hill.  

Check out the blurb:
Rachel is standing on the brink of a world about to change. 
Battling a dysfunctional family life and still trying to cover up her involvement in a scandal two years prior, Rachel can't seem to think straight anymore. She's just living day to day, trying not to succumb to the stress she covers up with a polite smile. 
When Kelly Hill saunters back in her life, Rachel feels her carefully crafted lies begin to crack apart around her. 
Rachel had made a deal with the devil and now Kelly’s presence is causing her to go back on her word, bringing secrets boiling to the surface where they don’t belong.

But when a body is discovered on the grounds of Phillips Academy, Rachel knows she can't keep running from the truth forever.

British Bookworm's Review:
This is the second book which has been read and reviewed by me and Angie over at Confessions of an Unsuspected Bookworm.  (If you haven't already visited her site, please go check it out, she has some great book recommendations, I'll just wait patiently until you come back)

What to say about this book....?  Well, what I can say is that it is a really great read.   The author has done an amazing job with the characters in the story, from buttoned down, neurotic, facade that is Rachel, to the carefully worded, artfully laid back Kelly, each of them are clearly defined, and importantly, believable.

Throughout the story, I felt as though there was an undercurrent of tension which permeated the story; as integral to it as the bass line is to a piece of music.  This clever writing style has you metaphorically sitting on the edge of your seat waiting for the other shoe to drop.

But, don't expect all your questions to be answered.  Oh no.  As the reader, you are not privy to the secrets shared between Rachel and Kelly, not for some time at least, and even then not all of them!  Being  drip fed the story through flashback style chapters in my view,  leads you nicely through the tangled history between the characters, without ever spoiling the mood with too much disclosure at any one time..

And the ending?  Well, like Oliver Twist, I immediately asked for more!  Fortunately, I am told that this is the first book in a series of 4.

And so to the score..... a tricky one, if I'm honest, because I'm stuck between two  - B+/A- (Amazon 4*/5*).  I cannot be any clearer.  Why not you read it and make up your own mind?

My Review:
I knew Laura wasn't into writing those sweet "Happily Ever Afters" that I typically read, so I went into this story with an open mind, anticipating drama, a little romance, and possibly a fatality.  What I got was incredible characters, a deep plot, and an overall great story!  And yes, there may have been a dead person or two.  Let me warn you, this book switches back and forth between the past and present as it unveils the story.  I liked that dynamic, but I know some don't, so just an FYI.
     The story pulled me in from the very beginning.  I liked the character Kelly Hill from the very beginning, and the character, Jefferson Williams, not so much.  Kelly is this cool mysterious guy who doesn't let on that he is so perceptive and he protects those he loves.  Rachel is complicated.  I found myself identifying with her as she tried to please those around her and not let others know when she was troubled.  She tried to portray such a mature attitude and put together self, while inside she was screaming for help she didn't know how to ask for.  The relationship between Kelly and Rachel is deep.  I still don't know if I understand their feelings toward one another.  Tourtued is the word that kept coming to my mind as I read their story.  My only complaint would be that as the story progressed, I wanted more clues to what was happening.  I felt mystery of the story was a little drawn out towards the end.  I found myself wanting to skip ahead because I needed to know what was next.
     Good news!  There will be another book in the series and I would consider the ending cliffhangerish (totally not a word, but appropriate).  You walk away satisfied with where the story ends, but craving more. Overall, this is a story I will definitely recommend to others.  Laura Gibson has such a unique way of telling a story that even if you don't like the story, you will walk away knowing that above all else, you read something beautiful.

Find Laura on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/L.P.V.Gibson
Twitter: @LGibbers 


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