Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Watch the Girls by Jennifer Wolfe


My sister and I have been trading mysteries back and forth and when she gave me this one, I was so excited. It sounded kind of like NIGHT FILM, one of my favorite thrillers, with an L.A. gothic vibe. And it ended up being all of that and more, with a creepy small town setting, a damaged and tortured child star, a cold case investigation, and a sinister tale of cult horror, obsession, and the worst kind of fame.

First, big ups to my friend, Heather, for BRing this with me. We texted back and forth while I was screaming inside (and possibly outside) over this glorious nightmare of a book. I am not exaggerating when I say that it's one of the best thrillers I've read in ages. This is a keeper and I'm SHOOK that more people aren't devouring WATCH THE GIRLS with the bated breath it deserves.

The story is dual timeline and both of those timelines revolve around Liv, former child star, now semi-washed up L.A. actress. She's just been fired from her job on a ghost hunters type show and with no other palpable avenues, she decides to start a sort of Kickstarter project to do her own cold case work. She's shocked when one of her backers ends up being a cult director of lurid horror, Jonas Kron, who wants her to look into the Dark Road in Stone's Throw, a place where several girls disappeared over the years, including his own niece, Annika.

As soon as Liv gets to Stone's Throw, creepy shit starts happening. Despite their charming little apple festival and cute little houses, there's also a ton of Kron fanatics and a wolf sanctuary that eerily mirrors one of the scenes in Kron's own psychodramas. And it also becomes pretty clear that there are people who are way more involved in Liv's investigation than they should be. Who maybe don't want her to succeed. Who are maybe much, much closer than she could have ever guessed. DUN, DUN, DUN.

I read this book in a single sitting and stayed up until 1AM to read it. The ending left me SHOCKED. But the whole book is studded with twists that kept making me go OMG OMG OMG OMG. There's triggers for pretty much everything in here, but a lot of the really bad stuff is either off screen or only alluded to, so this book doesn't feel exploitative; it's just a sultry and sinister work of art. Apparently Jennifer Wolfe is a YA author and this is her first adult thriller and all I have to say is holy shit. Sign me up for a copy of whatever nightmare sundae she decides to create next because I am STARVED.

5 out of 5 stars

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.