Review ~ YOU by Caroline Kepnes


(You, #1)

Caroline Kepnes


Hypnotic and scary.” —Stephen King

“I am RIVETED, AGHAST, AROUSED, you name it. The rare instance when prose and plot are equally delicious.” —Lena Dunham

From debut author Caroline Kepnes comes You, one of Suspense Magazine’s Best Books of 2014, and a brilliant and terrifying novel for the social media age.

When a beautiful, aspiring writer strides into the East Village bookstore where Joe Goldberg works, he does what anyone would do: he Googles the name on her credit card.

There is only one Guinevere Beck in New York City. She has a public Facebook account and Tweets incessantly, telling Joe everything he needs to know: she is simply Beck to her friends, she went to Brown University, she lives on Bank Street, and she’ll be at a bar in Brooklyn tonight—the perfect place for a “chance” meeting.

As Joe invisibly and obsessively takes control of Beck’s life, he orchestrates a series of events to ensure Beck finds herself in his waiting arms. Moving from stalker to boyfriend, Joe transforms himself into Beck’s perfect man, all while quietly removing the obstacles that stand in their way—even if it means murder.

A terrifying exploration of how vulnerable we all are to stalking and manipulation, debut author Caroline Kepnes delivers a razor-sharp novel for our hyper-connected digital age. You is a compulsively readable page-turner that’s being compared to Gone Girl, American Psycho, and Stephen King’s Misery.


*4 stars for plot–5 stars for writing*

It’s been 16 minutes and 4 hours since I’ve finished reading this lunatic of a book—and although I am scared and disturbed and feeling straight-up icky, I’m also outrageously impressed.

With the exception of certain scenarios appearing just a bit too fitting and orchestrated (e.g. multiple persons failing to put pass codes on their phones so a certain stalker can do his job with ease), I think this book was pretty damn amazing.

For me, it was the writing. This author has captured the nature of a stalker (from what I can only assume, since I am not one), brilliantly.

We are wedged straight inside the head of Joe, whose internal dialogue aims to make your skin crawl and eyes widen in disbelief. And yet…he can be slightly charming at times, and his psychotic thoughts—although choppy and drenched in delusion—are often hilarious.

However, make no mistake—this is not a romance novel. And Joe is not sexy, at least not for me. But he is so real and convincing and constant. His character continues to sink in a downward spiral until there is nothing more left to pity. His issues are not glamorized, and neither are the deep-rooted flaws of the rest of the cast.

This story isn’t one I’d revisit in the future, although I am glad to have read it. It left me in a sort of dark mood for hours after reading, but emotional side effects are the marks of a job well done. Would definitely recommend to readers who are in it for thrills, not frills! 😉

Author: Kristin (KC)

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