by Megan Abbott
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Release Date: July 17, 2018
Genres: Fiction; Thriller; Mystery
Kit Owens harbored only modest ambitions for herself when the mysterious Diane Fleming appeared in her high school chemistry class. But Diane’s academic brilliance lit a fire in Kit, and the two developed an unlikely friendship. Until Diane shared a secret that changed everything between them.
More than a decade later, Kit thinks she’s put Diane behind her forever and she’s begun to fulfill the scientific dreams Diane awakened in her. But the past comes roaring back when she discovers that Diane is her competition for a position both women covet, taking part in groundbreaking new research led by their idol. Soon enough, the two former friends find themselves locked in a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse that threatens to destroy them both.
“By telling me, you trapped me,” I say through my teeth.
“By telling you,” she whispers, rain still glistening on her, “I was free.”
This was my first Megan Abbott book and I’m sorry to say that I was not impressed… Ultimately, THIS BOOK WAS JUST SO BORING. 😦
Kit Owens herself was an interesting character. Spurred on by her relationship with the new girl in class, Kit pushes herself to excel in her last few years of high school and puts herself on track to work directly with her real life science idol. During high school Kit and Diane form a sort of fleeting friendship until Diane tells Kit her “secret” and everything changes. After they graduate, Kit doesn’t see Diane again until she finds out they’re competing for the same job about a decade later.
The biggest problem right off the bat was Diane’s high school “secret” was incredibly obvious – I think I guessed it about thirty pages in. On top of that, Abbott s.l.o.w.l.y. recounts Kit’s past in flashbacks. But, with the exception of “the secret” nothing happens … seriously. It was like trudging through mud toward an obvious reveal.
Then, about a third of the way through, the story picks up. We finally get some action!! I was excited because something was happening! … This lift lasted for about a chapter and then, once again…nothing.
I dragged myself slowly through the rest of the novel hoping for a twist or surprise. Nope.
So clearly this book was not meant for me. I think Abbott was trying to create a creepy, suspenseful story. But I wasn’t on the edge of my seat, I was so bored that I was creating a grocery list in my head. I felt so disconnected from the main character it was hard to care. In the end, it simply didn’t work.
My mom always says, you don’t have a self until you have a secret.