Friday, 8 June 2018

Book Review - SWEETPEA by CJ Skuse

I have always been fearful of reading any kind of crime/thriller novel, simply because I consider myself to be somewhat of a literary wimp who gets scared easily. But there was just something about ‘Sweet Pea’ by CJ Skuse that grabbed my attention.

Funnily enough, I was in my workplace (Waterstones) browsing books after my shift when I started to get pulled in the direction of the thrillers. Sweet Pea ended up in my hands and then I bought it. I started it as soon as I got home, and let me tell you, this has to be one of the best books I have read in a long time.

It has been labelled by Red Magazine as ‘Bridget Jones meets American Psycho’ and there couldn’t be a description more apt for this book.

It isn’t your average crime thriller in that it is told in diary form from the perspective of a female serial killer. Rhiannon is an anti-hero who despite all the murder, you just end up rooting for her. this book was so funny, dark, and crude which may or may not be words that have been used to describe me, so it comes as no surprise that I got on with this book very well. I am also pretty sure that if I ever met CJ Skuse, I think we would get a house on fire, only we would be the ones who would have set the fire.

This is a very well written book, that explores the human psyche after trauma and how it can shape a person. It is done in such a clever way that many of the twists and turns that happened within the book, I couldn’t have predicted.

The many different strands that wove together to create a solid story were brilliant. The relationship Rhiannon has with her boyfriend (who is a bit of a dick), her relationship with her PISCO’s (read the book and you will get this, btw they are all dicks!). I also loved to see Rhiannon in her work environment, I am pretty sure many of us have thought about our colleagues the same was our Anti-Hero thought about ours. Although I doubt we would resort to murder, hopefully.

All I can say is that this book is a must read if you love dark, crude humour. I had to keep stopping reading to show my husband funny lines from the book, and he would look at me half concerned that this book was giving me too many ideas.

I give this book a thrilling dark, funny and fabulously crude Five out of Five.


Read it NOW!!!!!

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About the Author

C.J. Skuse is the author of PRETTY BAD THINGS, ROCKOHOLIC, DEAD ROMANTIC (Chicken House) as well as MONSTER and THE DEVIANTS (Mira Ink) and SWEETPEA (HQ/HarperCollins).


Born in 1980 in Weston-super-Mare, England, C.J. has First Class degrees in Creative Writing and Writing for Young People. Aside from writing novels, C.J. is a Senior Lecturer in Writing for Children on the M.A. at Bath Spa University.

C.J. loves Masterchef, Gummy Bears and Sylvanian Families. She hates carnivals, hard-boiled eggs and coughing. The movies Titanic, My Best Friend’s Wedding and Ruby Sparks were all probably based on her ideas - she just didn't get to write them down in time.

Before she dies, C.J. would like to go to Japan, try clay-pigeon shooting and have Tom Hardy present her with the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.

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