Published by Quercus in December 2011
This book was kindly given to me by Carolyn of Book Chick City to review.
A funeral without a body is like a wedding without a bride. Or a groom.
Except this isn't officially a funeral - it's a memorial service. Instead of a coffin, there's an easel with a huge photo. She looks pretty. Hopeful, even.
Four girls. One dead body. A whole lot of guilt.
Alice King isn’t expecting the holiday of a lifetime when she sets off with her classmates on a trip to the Scottish wilderness, but she’s not exactly prepared for an experience beyond her darkest nightmares…
Alice and her best friend Cass are stuck in a cabin with Polly, the social outcast, and Rae, the moody emo-girl. Then there’s Tara – queen of mean. Powerful, beautiful and cruel, she likes nothing better than putting people down.
Cass decides it’s time to teach Tara a lesson she’ll never forget. And so begins a series of events that will change the lives of these girls forever...
A compelling story of guilty secrets, troubled friendship and burgeoning love.
I just love the way Cat Clarke writes. Her characters just draw me in and I always feel like I know them personally. I really loved Alice, despite her reluctance to come forward at the beginning. I think it took her quite some time to grasp what had really happened on the night that Tara died.
I couldn't help but like Tara as the book progressed either. I felt sorry for her; what everyone saw was mainly an image portrayed to make her stand out as popular. She was no different from any other girl in secondary school trying to make her way.
I loved Jack! He was completely adorable; geeky but cool at the same time. A boy with a heart!
From the first chapter you are drawn into the story. The last line in the first chapter really blew me away and I was compelled to continue reading. It had touches of magical realism yet seemed completely realistic. It reminded me of a darker version of The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen with elements of the Mean Girls weaved into it.
The book had a brilliant plot which had me gripped all the way through. My only problem with Cat Clarke, is that she can't write faster - desperately in need of two Cat Clarke books a year! (No pressure)
Cat Clarke is seriously an awesome author and I would definitely recommend you read both of her books. I love the tone and the voice she writes with. You could easily lose a day of your life when you start reading one of her books. I can't wait to see what she writes next.