I first went to see Wicked: The Musical for my 21st birthday in London, and I fell in love with it. I love the story, the music, the staging.. So much that I took my mum last year when it came to Manchester and I was just as amazed as the first time.
So when it came to choosing some books for my mum to buy me for Christmas, Gregory Maguire’s book which inspired the musical was at the top of my list.
This is one of the books I picked out as part of my Christmas present off my mum, and I actually read it within a few days of then but hadn’t got around to writing this review until now! The Shining Girls is written by Lauren Beukes, and as it had recommendations from both Gillian Flynn and Tana French, two of my favourite authors at the moment, I couldn’t leave it in Waterstones.
The blurb is as follows: “THE GIRL WHO WOULDN’T DIE. Kirby is lucky she survived the attack. She is sure there were other victims were less fortunate, but the evidence she finds is … impossible. HUNTING A KILLER WHO SHOULDN’T EXIST. Harper stalks his shining girls through the years – and cuts the spark out of them. But what if the one that got away came back for him?”
Compelling, yes? I was instantly drawn in by the time travel aspect which the blurb hints at, yet it is also one of the things that can make this book difficult to read. I read it in around two days, late nights included, as it was definitely one of those books which you NEED to know the end to. However, the chapters are split between characters and years. I’m generally a fast reader but this does mean that if a book takes a bit more brain power I have to force myself to slow down, and that was the case with the Shining Girls. If you enjoy thrillers or creepy books though, it is definitely worth putting in the effort to keep track of what is going on! The object which enables the killer to time travel is ‘The House’, kind of like an immovable tardis! I don’t think the book fully explains why the House is the way it is, but I don’t think it needs to either.
The ending was brilliant, one of those where you are left hanging slightly. I was thinking about this book for days afterwards, and I talked about it to my family and boyfriend a lot, although I don’t think they quite grasped the concept!
I will definitely be buying another of Lauren’s books, a quick browse on Amazon leaves me thinking that I might like Zoo City. I have got quite a few books to get through first however!
Have you read the Shining Girls? What did you think?