Unnatural Deeds by Cyn Balog
Read: December 6 – 11
Format: ARC Ebook
My Book Rating: 3.5 Stars
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Genre: YA Mystery / Psychological Thriller
ABOUT THE BOOK
Some secrets are worth killing to protect.
Victoria Zell doesn’t fit in, not that she cares what anyone thinks. She and her homeschooled boyfriend, Andrew, are inseparable. All they need is each other. That is, until Zachary Zimmerman joins her homeroom. Within an hour of meeting, he convinces good-girl Vic to cut class. And she can’t get enough of that rush.
Despite Vic’s loyalty to Andrew, she finds her life slowly entwining with Z’s. Soon she’s lying to everyone she knows and breaking all the rules to be with Z. She can’t get enough of him—or unraveling the stories of the family he’s determined to keep hidden.
Except Z’s not the only one with a past. Straight-laced Vic is hiding her own secrets…secrets that are about to destroy everything in her path.
I have a love/hate relationship with this book.
Basic gist: Vic tells the story to her boyfriend, Andrew, all about how she cheated on him, falling for the new guy at school, Z. The ending is OUT THERE. If you don’t read books because of cheating, don’t count this one out for that reason. Seriously.
What I loved:
I loved the bits of interviews, newspaper articles, and so on that preceded each chapter. They were little clues to the end game that kept me invested in the story, needing to know what happened. I loved that, until almost the final chapter, I had no clue where this was going. I didn’t even know who was a good guy and who was a bad guy. I loved that it kept me guessing.
What I didn’t care for:
I wasn’t really invested in the day to day play-by-play that Vic was giving us. It bored me a little. I didn’t like the decisions she made, though I understand that’s part of her character, and I don’t knock stars for that. I just didn’t like some of the things she did. Actually, aside from her stupid decisions, I can kind of relate to Vic. She feels like an outsider, doesn’t really feel like she belongs and can’t connect to her peers. Gosh, that was me in high school!
As I read books I tend to have a star rating in mind, this one jumped quickly from about a 2 up to a 3.5. This is the kind of book that seemed, to me, tedious as I read it. But when I read that ending? Wow. Blew me away. I actually didn’t quite understand what was happening until it was happening. Suddenly I was backpedaling, saying, WAIT! WHAT??? Yeah, it was good. So trippy.
So, do I recommend this book? Yes. But go into this knowing that the pacing is slow and steady, the clues are there, but you’re unlikely to put it together until the very end. And you’ll probably keep thinking about the story afterward, I know I did!
I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Get the Unnatural Deeds here:
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Who knew that my boyfriend, quiet, unassuming Andrew Quinn, had that in him.
I thought I knew you inside and out, but… I was wrong.
I breathed in. Breathed out. Prayed to the Effexor gods. Tried to remember what that therapist had said last year before my parents’ insurance ran out and they couldn’t afford to send me. Control. You have the control. Visualize.
I hardly knew him, and already I hated to disappoint him. Because that’s hat my story was: disappointing.
“You’re unpredictable so people won’t figure you out. That’s your big fear, isn’t it? You don’t want anyone too close to you. Because the people closest to you have all let you down. And you’re afraid of being let down again.”
Z looked into my eyes. “See? You…you get me.”
Somehow, I’d thought that being Z’s friend would make me visible. That being next to him would finally put me on the nap and make people who once detested or ignored me give me a second chance.
So far, that was not the case.
But Z had a way of making any proposition appealing. Venturing out in frigid temperatures? Sure. Snorkeling with sharks? Awesome.
“You and me. We’re both so fucked up, so afraid that one wrong move will send the house of cards crumbling to the ground. I get you, all right? That’s what I mean.”
But that was Z. He thrived on danger. I sure didn’t.