Book Review: Sweetpea by C. J. Skuse


Warning: don’t read this book is you don’t like your humour on the darker side of life. If you enjoy black humour, read this book,  it’s over-the-top, crude, fun, a tad murderous but oh so funny – it’s bloody brilliant!

Book Description:

When she was good, she was very, very good. When she was bad, she was deadly.

Rhiannon is your average girl next door, settled with her boyfriend and little dog…but she’s got a killer secret.

Although her childhood was haunted by a famous crime, Rhiannon’s life is normal now that her celebrity has dwindled. By day her job as an editorial assistant is demeaning and unsatisfying. By evening she dutifully listens to her friend’s plans for marriage and babies whilst secretly making a list.

A kill list.

From the man on the Lidl checkout who always mishandles her apples, to the driver who cuts her off on her way to work, to the people who have got it coming, Rhiannon’s ready to get her revenge.

Because the girl everyone overlooks might be able to get away with murder…

My Thoughts:

If you don’t like people staring at you for breaking out into fits of laughter, don’t read this book in public. Skuse knows how to write black comedy, and she’ll have you laughing out loud for sure.

Told in a series of journal entries, we journey with Rhiannon through her life as she documents the people she’d like to kill, manages to kill a few of them, all the while keeping up ‘The Act’ of appearing normal. I won’t divulge any more about the plot but I’m quite concerned that I wish Rhiannon was my friend. Wanting a serial killer for a friend is quite worrying but it’d be so worth it, if she was herself that is. Wait, wait, wait, let me clarify that, by herself, I don’t mean the serial killer part, I mean the sarcastic comments, the dry wit and the downright funny sense of humour.

Rhiannon is a wonderful character, and okay, she may have a few murderous tendencies but it makes for entertaining reading, and we all have our flaws, anyway, most of the people she kills are bad, so that’s okay right!? I mean, who doesn’t get annoyed when the person in front of you at the checkout has finished paying for their shopping, their bags are packed and they have their change but they still stand chatting to the cashiers for ages, while you’re impatiently waiting, and then to top it off the cashier has the cheek to thank you for waiting when she eventually serves you – like you had a choice in the matter! Don’t fret, Rhiannon doesn’t kill this customer, she’s just list-worthy, she tends to turn her fantasies into realities on the people who commit crimes of a more heinous nature. Yes, I’m shamelessly trying to justify having a serial killer for a friend but read this book and you’ll fully understand why. While this is crime fiction, it can be enjoyed by anyone who enjoys black humour.

I highly recommend this book, it’s hilarious, full of profanities, has some explicit scenes, it’s definitely adult reading material, it won’t be for everyone but it was perfect for me; come and see what a day in the life of Rhiannon is like – just don’t call her ‘Sweetpea!’

This book is available to buy from: Amazon UK / Book Depository (release date: 20/04/17)

*My thanks to the author (C. J. Skuse) and publisher (HQ) for granting me access to a digital copy of this book via Netgalley*

32 thoughts on “Book Review: Sweetpea by C. J. Skuse

  1. I’ve been waiting for this review! You’ve completely sold me and I’m heading off immediately to see how I can get this one. This reminds me totally of YOU by Caroline Kepnes…have you read it yet? Rhiannon and Joe could be long lost siblings from the sound of it. Don’t worry, I also wanted Joe for a friend and would be willing to overlook his tendency to kill people who cross him😂Great review!!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I need to, I’ve been saying I will for ages and still haven’t. Doubt I’ll fit it in this month as I’ve already got 4 of my own books scheduled in. So next month, I’ll move it to the next month pile now so I don’t forget haha

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Great review!
    I’m reading this one myself now and writing my review as I go along 😀 so many thoughts, so many… gosh, it is definitely out there isn’t it? 🙂
    Glad you enjoyed it.. I’m still quite undecided how that’s going to end up for me.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh yeah, I love her lists! There are oddly and scarily enough things in those lists that I agree with XD hahaha… I’m at 33%, if you can recall the baby talk *ahem* But true enough, I can’t but appreciate the entertainment factor here! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I can relate to being the impatient person behind the chatty shopper.. hahah.. This book does sounds very interesting to read. Love your review!


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