Wednesday, April 13, 2022

The Lifeguard by Richie Tankersley Cusick


Is there anything more 90s than a horror novel set at the beach? I don't think so. So far this is my least Cusick book I've read as part of my experiment. The heroine, Kelsey, goes to this beachy island with her mom to meet her mom's boyfriend and his kids. There's townies and tourists and all the hot young things are lifeguards, and it should basically be 90s teen paradise. Which it is... except for the murders.

Richie Tankersley Cusick writes a lot of my favorite tropes. Hot dangerous guys, strong but kind of dreamy heroines, and sort of a modern gothy vibe. I don't think this one works quite as well as THE DRIFTER did for a couple reasons. One, it just didn't have the same level of suspense and drama and atmosphere. Two, it's way more dated (party lines?? LOL), whereas, THE DRIFTER felt kind of timeless. Three, I don't know, I was just really bored. There were some great lines in here about grief and getting over trauma and also some good zingers (check my Goodreads status updates), but apart from that, it was pretty bland.

Will 100% be checking out more of her stuff, though. She seems to have a really good formula going and, like Caroline B. Cooney, one of my other favorite Point Horror authors, she has way more hits than misses, which can't be said for other authors. Also, fun fact: a lot of these rereleased Point Horror books have little mini biographies about the authors in the back with pictures, so that's neat. I love that this author writes at a desk that's allegedly haunted! #goals

2 to 2.5 out of 5 stars

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