First Published: 14 Jan 2016
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*Disclaimer: I received this ARC in return for an honest review. A huge thank you to Atria/Emily Bestler Books and netgalley for this ARC.*
Ultimate anti-hero finds love / Crude, but won my heart
“Joe Goldberg is no stranger to hiding bodies. In the past ten years, this thirty-something has buried four of them, collateral damage in his quest for love. Now he’s heading west to Los Angeles, the city of second chances, determined to put his past behind him.
In Hollywood, Joe blends in effortlessly with the other young upstarts. He eats guac, works in a bookstore, and flirts with a journalist neighbor. But while others seem fixated on their own reflections, Joe can’t stop looking over his shoulder. The problem with hidden bodies is that they don’t always stay that way. They re-emerge, like dark thoughts, multiplying and threatening to destroy what Joe wants most: true love. And when he finds it in a darkened room in Soho House, he’s more desperate than ever to keep his secrets buried. He doesn’t want to hurt his new girlfriend—he wants to be with her forever. But if she ever finds out what he’s done, he may not have a choice…”
This wasn’t the most entertaining book and I often felt confused on why I was drawn to read more or to continue when I have an aversion to Joe. Call it morbid curiosity or the enjoyment of Kepnes’ writing style, but I couldn’t put it down or resist finishing it.
Thankfully, the end was satisfying; although I can’t say I could full hardheartedly recommend this book to everyone without giving a strong warning regarding the negative subject matter.
Our Main Character:
Joe begins this book as a hate-able, negative person. My first thought of him was that he is a psycho-stalker with anger issues. He was that bad! He flares up at the most minor provocations and tends to kill people (or want to) during these times – what the heck? No normal person behaves this way…
But… Joe grew on me and he grew as a person as this book progresses. Things happen that disprove his negative outlook on life and he, slowly, but surely, finds that he is able to open himself to others without getting hurt.. Well… somewhat 😉
It impresses me that Kepnes chose to write about a dislikeable character that holds a negative outlook on life and all-around is unappealing, yet she causes the reader to want to know what happens next. I don’t understand what causes authors to push into new territories or into territories that are almost guaranteed to be unpopular, but she pulls it off.
Works as a Standalone:
I am notoriously awful at realizing whether a Netgalley book is part of a series or a standalone and was a heartbroken when I discovered that this was the second book in the series. (Am I the only one who assumes this information would be posted so unsuspecting readers aren’t put into a position of not liking a book for reasons that aren’t the books fault?) Well, you’re in luck. Hidden Bodies summarizes the first book and/or provides all necessary information in order to fully enjoy this book without having read You.
The reader has no idea what to expect for the ending of this book. I found it surprisingly satisfying. Who knew a sociopath could find such a happy ending?
readers who prefer characters that aren’t your typical happy-go-lucky type and who don’t mind a MC who kills off those they simply don’t like.