Friday, January 3, 2014

[Review: No One Else Can Have You by Kathleen Hale]

"No One Else Can Have You"
Author: Kathleen Hale
Series: None
Pages: 384
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Horror, Mystery
Date Published: January 7th, 2014
Publisher: HarperTeen
Format Read: eARC provided by publisher (via Edelweiss) for honest review

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Summary:

Small towns are nothing if not friendly. Friendship, Wisconsin (population: 688) is no different. Around here, everyone wears a smile. And no one ever locks their doors. Until, that is, high school sweetheart Ruth Fried is found murdered. Strung up like a scarecrow in the middle of a cornfield.

Unfortunately, Friendship’s police are more adept at looking for lost pets than catching killers. So Ruth’s best friend, Kippy Bushman, armed with only her tenacious Midwestern spirit and Ruth’s secret diary (which Ruth’s mother had asked her to read in order to redact any, you know, sex parts), sets out to find the murderer. But in a quiet town like Friendship—where no one is a suspect—anyone could be the killer.
-Goodreads 
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My Thoughts:

First I'd like to give a shout out to whoever created this cover.  It's pretty fantastic and after reading the book, it totally fits!  So, that's awesome.  But this isn't a review blog about book covers, it's for book reviews.  I can tell you right now that this book will not be for everyone.  It's voice is odd and weird.  The way Hale tells the story will either appeal to you or make you cringe.  She has a really unique voice as a writer.  Though in all honesty, I'm very middle of the road about the book itself, I liked the way that the book was written.  It's strange and all the people and places that inhabit the pages are as oddball as they get.  Hale lets go with her quirk and that really worked for me!

Like with all mystery books, there are some things that you can't really talk about while writing a review and some of those things are what made this book fall a little flat for me.  It also could be the fact that, before I was halfway through the book I knew who the perpetrator was.  Not to say that I didn't toss out a few bogus guesses first, but once it became clear, there was no turning back in my mind, even if Hale still threw some curve balls at me.  Also, I felt like some more creepy things should have happened.  In a way this book was highly character based, which I also liked, but I feel like there should have been more strange none character related things happening.  I guess what I'm trying to say is that, other then the details of Ruth's murder, it just didn't creep me out enough.

That being said, I enjoyed the fact that Hale wrote a character driven piece.  Kippy was a really unique and extremely flawed MC.  It made me like her and leery of her all at the same time.  She's a bit of a loose cannon and it makes things entertaining.  Davey was sweet, really sweet.  Sure he's also really twisted and has a gnarly background, but he's really likeable.  I actually thought that Kippy's dad Dom was a great addition to the cast as well.  I thought he was pretty funny.  And Ralph was like that older brother that Kippy needed in her life, he was just always kind of there, being super nerdy.  

The bit characters added a lot of their own flare into the story as well.  Hale made you have strong feelings about all of them.  Libby wasn't that nice, the support group was a bit off, yet loveable and the sheriff was someone that you just didn't really like.  I also loved Hale's use of Ruth's diary.  It was interesting to see what Kippy found in it's pages and gave a look at the inner working of a dead girl's mind.  

I think that anyone who loves a good murder mystery that is more about the characters than some huge creep out factor will really like this one.  Throw in a quirky set of characters, a unique writing style and some small town charm (wait is that what that was?) and you've got a book that just might appeal to you!

Rating:
3 Unicorns = I liked it, but it has it's issues!

3 comments:

Ashley said...

I will say, you have caught my interest. I had not heard of this one yet. I do like a good murder mystery but I am not sure I would love the characters.

Ashley @ The Quiet Concert

Kirsty-Marie Jones said...

I liked it, but I was disappointed with it. But, yeah, definitely agree with you. It will either appeal or make you cringe, and it made me cringe in a lot of places, multiple times. And the whole "mystery" on who killed her, was predictable, I thought for a minute that there was going to be a huge twist with Kippy and it just didn't happen. I will give it a creepy factor though, for the feeling of wrongness, the whole thing just felt...off somehow, haha. Great review!

Kirsty-Marie Jones said...

I liked it, but I was disappointed with it. But, yeah, definitely agree with you. It will either appeal or make you cringe, and it made me cringe in a lot of places, multiple times. And the whole "mystery" on who killed her, was predictable, I thought for a minute that there was going to be a huge twist with Kippy and it just didn't happen. I will give it a creepy factor though, for the feeling of wrongness, the whole thing just felt...off somehow, haha. Great review!