Since I have just come off reading a book that was a bit heady in themes, “Bloody Little Secrets” by Karly Kirkpatrick was a nice change of pace. From the moment Vicky wakes up in a coffin, the novel keeps the reader engaged, and since it is a quick read, there are no points that make the reader feel like they have to trudge through just to get to the good parts or to find key action, which was a major plus. I think I managed to read all 351 pages of the ARC copy Kirkpatrick forwarded to me in a total of four and half hours, and given my busy schedule, it made for an enjoyable way to pass some of my precious-few hours free.
The downside of the novel for me – and this is based on personal preference, not a failing on Kirkpatrick’s part – is that it was written in first-person. More and more novels are written in first person, stemming from the success of the “Twilight” series. However, it is my least favorite perspective. When I read a novel, I read to get lost in the characters, to watch them grow and develop in a humanistic fashion. The problem I have with first person is that the character growth is limited to the person telling the story and secondary characters feel static and flat. The author also runs the risk of losing readers if the person telling the story isn’t engaging.
Fortunately, Kirkpatrick’s Vicky is not static, annoying, boring or frustrating – all adjectives that I’ve used after reading other first-person narratives. I remember thinking about half way through the text that Vicky is a typical teenager, which is also a plus for the book. Since this is written as a young adult novel, Kirkpatrick has given the reader a lead character that teens can relate to, even if there is a twist to this high school senior. Kirkpatrick also does a great job engaging the reader, and allowing Vicky to grow, even if the other characters’ growth does seem static to me since the POV doesn’t allow us to get into their heads.
So, if you like vampires, if you like the supernatural and if you want a book that is light and just a quick, guilty-pleasure read, then check out Karly Kirkpatrick’s “Bloody Little Secrets.”