Review | #Murderfunding – Gretchen McNeil

After reading #Murdertrending, I was really curious how the story would continue in #Murderfunding. I bought the books at the same time, so I picked up the sequel a few days later. #Murderfunding is a sequel and a companion novel. What did I think of this book? Keep reading to find out!

WELCOME TO WHO WANTS TO BE A PANIAC?, the latest reality TV show on the hunt for the next big-hit serial killer. But don’t worry—no one is actually going to murder anyone, as real as the fake gore and pretend murder may appear . . . uh, right?

Seventeen-year-old Becca Martinello is about to find out. When her perfectly normal soccer mom dies in a car crash, a strange girl named Stef appears to let Becca know that her deceased mom was none other than one of Alcatraz 2.0’s most popular serial killers—Molly Mauler. Soon, Becca ends up on Who Wants to Be a Painiac? to learn the truth about her mom’s connection to Molly Mauler, but things turn sinister when people are murdered IRL. Will Becca uncover dark secrets and make it out of the deadly reality show alive? Or will she get cut?


#Murderfunding starts not too long after #Murdertrending and everyone is shocked how everything played out on Alcatraz 2.0. There are two sides to this story now. You have a group that thinks the serial killers on Alcatraz 2.0 should be outed to the world and others who think this whole thing is getting way out of control.

I loved that once again, the author chose to use message boards and other outlets in this book. I loved reading about what people were thinking and what was going on outside of what the characters are telling us. It seems more and more authors are including stuff like this and I’m a big fan. I think it gives the story an extra element.

“Emotions are hard.”

Our main character, Becca, just lot her mom and is trying to deal with the aftermath. When Stef shows up and tells her that he mother was a serial killer on Alcatraz 2.0 her life is flipped upside down. She wants to get to the bottom of things, so decides to audition for the newest reality show Who Wants to be a Painiac? This whole book is filled with the journey there and all that happens in between.

At first, I thought this book wasn’t going to be as bloody as the first one, but I was wrong. This book gets bloody and descriptive and at times, I’m still not completely sure this should be labeled YA. I do like that the author kept the same style when it came to the brutal side of the story. It’s clear she thought this world out and stuck to it.

During this story we get a few chapters from Dee’s POV (main character from the first book). I really thought this was going to give an extra dimension to the story, but I kind of missed this. There aren’t many chapters and I’m not quite sure what the author wanted to accomplish with adding them as well. I mean, I didn’t mind seeing them again, but for me their story didn’t get solved at all. I still have a lot of questions.

“Your mom was the Alcatraz-sanctioned executioner know as Molly Mauler.”

Becca was an interesting main character. As a fan of the app that showed everyone Alcatraz 2.0, she has a hard time coming to terms with the fact her mother could be involved with that. I completely understand her need to get answers, even if traveling all the way to audition is a bit extreme. Having your whole world flipped upside down definitely makes some drama accepted. I could’ve done without the little romance part with Stef though. I mean, every character deserves love, but it didn’t fit in this story for me. It felt a bit forced.

Also, that being said. Stef is a character I would’ve liked to have known more about. We learn bits and pieces while reading, but I still draw a bit of a blank thinking about her. I completey understand her purpose at a character, but with her being a bit part in the majority of the story, I would’ve liked a bit more. Maybe her POV a few times?

I know this sounds like I didn’t really enjoy this at all, but besides some of my issues this was a very fast read. The way it’s written makes it hard to put down and I was curious how this would all be wrapped up. Her concept is very creative and a game show idea is always fun in books. Also, the side characters they meet while auditioning were fun. I loved their personas and how quirky they were.

Even though I enjoyed this one a little less than #Murdertrending, it was still entertaining in its own way! What was the last horror book you read? Is it one you’d recommend to others?

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