Review| #Murdertrending – Gretchen McNeil

If you’ve been following our blog, you know that I’m also a moderator in the Facebook group, TBR and Beyond. Each month we do group reads and this month we are discussing #Murdertrending. I’ve been trying to step out of my comfort zone with books and this one is definitely out there. I have been really curious about it though, so I gave it a try. Today I want to tell you about what I thought about this book!

” Who doesn’t enjoy living in constant fear for your life?”

#Murdertrending is a fast read and definitely unique. I can honestly say I’ve never read anything like it. Even though I did enjoy this book, even a week after finishing it, I’m still not sure what I read. If you’re looking for a fast and interesting read with many twists and turns, this one is definitely for you.

Our main character Dee wakes up on Alcatraz 2.0 after being convicted of murdering her stepsister. It’s clear from the start she says she’s innocent and needs to figure out what’s going on. Dee has to act fast, because Alcatraz 2.0 is a reality show filled with convicted murderers. Once you’re here it’s not clear how long you’ll live and it’s only a matter of time before you’re murdered for everyone to see.

” Secretly, Dee thought it was dangerous to appeal to the most vulgar instincts of humanity, to normalize something as horrific as state-sponsored serial killers. But that’s what you get when a former reality star was elected president.”

Alcatraz 2.0 is really one twisted reality show. It’s actually really scary that someone would think of something like this and it would be expected by the government. The author did a great job making me feel the creepy vibe with this book. All of the characters live in houses and actually have work to eat. Reading this book definitely kept me on edge, because I couldn’t predict when another character would be killed or who to trust. When Dee inspects her house (who knows who’s waiting there to kill her), I definitely had goosebumps and checked my door a few extra times before going to bed. Reading this on a dark and rainy night would definitely not have been good for me, haha.

Dee is definitely a strong character. Even though she was just dropped in this scary reality show and followed by cameras constantly, she definitely stayed calmer than I ever would. All sense of security is gone, but she is determined to prove she’s innocent and find out who’s behind this whole mess.

” An antisocial lunatic next door. Just one more fun thing to deal with on Alcatraz 2.0.”

We also meet some character along the way that are all rather quirky (whether they’re actually like that or are just trying to survive, isn’t always clear). Nyles, Ethan, Griselda, Blaire, and Mara are also all convicted of murdering someone and all claim to be innocent. Even though I wanted to trust some of these characters, I never was 100% sure I could. That definitely made reading this book interesting.

That being said, this book was brutal and gruesome. When some of the characters are murdered in this book it’s described in detail. In all honesty, that had me wondering quite a few times if this should be classified as YA. #Murdertrending is a dark book and I wouldn’t recommend it to the younger YA readers. On top of that, Dee is still dealing with PTSD from a traumatic event in her life. During the story we learn bits and pieces, but I think I would’ve liked to have seen just a little bit more of that.

” Death Row Breakfast Club – and the #DRBC hashtag – was trending hard.”

Besides being really dark, this book does have some humor (there are quite a few pop culture references made by the characters, but also by the people hired to come kill the inmates at Alcatraz 2.0). Some of these were funny and had me laughing. Seeing how this is a reality show, we also get tiny parts of Twitter feeds and forum discussions. This was nice tough, but again, I would’ve liked to have just a few more of these.

The author did a great job at keeping me on my toes. This book has a few twists and turns that I didn’t see coming. Even though this book is way out of my comfort zone, I did enjoy it (even though I’m still not sure how I feel about it, haha). I will definitely be picking up the sequel, because I’m curious how the author will continue.

This year has definitely been interesting with reading books I normally wouldn’t pick up. Do you like stepping out of your comfort zone? Or do you stick with what you know and love? Let me know in the comments!

Rating Report
Plot
4 Stars
Characters
4 Stars
Writing Style
4 Stars
Overall Enjoyment
3.5 Stars
Cover
4 Stars
Overall: 4 Stars

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