WELCOME TO THE NEAR FUTURE, where good and honest 8/18 citizens can enjoy watching the executions of society’s most infamous convicted felons, streaming live on The Postman app from the suburbanized prison island Alcatraz 2.0.
When eighteen-year-old Dee Guerrera wakes up in a haze, lying on the ground of a dimly lit warehouse, she realizes she’s about to be the next victim of the app. Knowing hardened criminals are getting a taste of their own medicine in this place is one thing, but Dee refuses to roll over and die for a heinous crime she didn’t commit. Can Dee and her newly formed posse, the Death Row Breakfast Club, prove she’s innocent before she ends up wrongfully murdered for the world to see? Or will The Postman’s cast of executioners kill them off one by one?
**Thanks so much to the publisher for sending me an e-ARC via Netgalley! It did not change my opinion of the book at all!**
WARNING: THERE IS QUITE A BIT OF GORE IN THIS NOVEL. Like, it’s actually YA horror and not the fake kind?? So, it brings the gore and the gory descriptions. There is, um, also a lot of murder. If you didn’t catch that already.
I think I have to be one of the most contradictory person when it comes to horror things. I refuse to watch horror movies because I can’t deal. My paranoia for scary stuff is already at an ultimate high, and seeing things with actual jump scares? Yeah, no thanks. However, give me a horror book? And I might be down. And for this book? I was really down.
If I had to describe this book, I would call it The Purge meets Scream Queens with a dash of Disney Princesses? If that even makes any sense? But honestly, that’s the only way to even describe it. This story brings in a wonderful message of just how much we are sensationalizing violence and gore in this country in kind of a cool and unique way that just happened to feature my beloved Disney ladies.
This story tackles our obsession with violence and the sensationalism that comes with it. It also had some interesting notes on what is happening in America right now especially regarding the presidency. It was certainly an interesting look, and to tell the truth, the story got a little scarier page by page because I could honestly see this becoming a thing in our future which each passing day. Which made this a bit of a scary read, tbh.
I thought everything about the premise was really interesting. I thought the villains were unique and so morbidly intriguing. There were just so much creativity between each one. Basically there was so much creativity just jam-packed into each and every thing in this book. I can’t even begin to describe everything, but McNeil managed to think of a lot and bring a new game to horror.
Also, the writing was pretty good. As always, I could have done without the gory descriptions – which I did quite often – but I know they are a key point in the horror genre. Besides that, McNeil did a wonderful job with creating suspense, intrigue, and more. As I said, there was a ton of creativity and some humor which was super fun. I could have done without some things and the past moments I wasn’t a fan of even though they were a bit crucial to the story. There were some good plot twists in the story as well and I didn’t fully get everything that was happening.
The characters were okay. I think that’s a lot where the 4 crowns come in instead of the 5. I liked them. I thought Dee and the sidekicks were good…but they weren’t great. I mean, I never really connected with any of them. They were a lot of just being there and being okay. I rooted for them, but I mean, I was never invested in them. They definitely quite a bit flat despite being likeable. And Gris totally felt like way too much of a cliche at parts for me. But again, I rooted for them and liked them.
Um, also, THERE WERE SO MANY MENTIONS OF DISNEY PRINCESSES. Like, this is a horror book from Disney publishing, but I never expected all the Disney Princess horror. One of the killers dresses his victims up as Disney Princesses and him their prince, and our MC gets stuck as the “princess” character on Murder Island. GUYS AND GALS, I JUST CAN’T. SO AMAZING. Can they be in every horror novel?????
Overall, this was such an interesting, quirky read that was YA horror done right. If you are not a fan of gore or horror, this book is not for you, but as a person that usually hates it, I did very well with it – enough for a four crown rating! It definitely was so intriguing and unique and I was in SO deep with it. It takes a hard look at the way our culture is going with violence, but it does so in the most interesting way. Plus, Disney Princesses. DISNEY PRINCESSES IN HORROR. 4 crowns and an Ariel rating!
What do you think? Do you read any YA horror? Any recs for me? Do you like horror? Let’s discuss in the comments below!