Every so often we like to do a book swap. Kate likes YA mainly and Becca enjoys thrillers. It’s good to try something different, so we came up with a book swap where we each give each other one of our reads and see what the other thinks.

This month we did ‘It Only Happens In The Movies’ by Holly Bourne (being Kate’s YA choice) and ‘Perfect Evil’ by Alex Kava (being Becca’s thriller choice). Here’s what we each thought of our respective swaps!

It Only Happens In The Movies – Holly Bourne


Dick Curtisfield, ha! I love it, and I’m sure the man himself would too!

This was a book swap with the bezzie. Book swap no.2. She basically takes this opportunity to get me to read something girly and fun, and I give her one of my fav murder books 😊

I enjoyed the book. I hate to say, I did. I was laughing with (at?) a lot of it. A lot of it was nonsense. But in the end, it was, overall, a good read.

Audrey is a 6th former, with the world’s WORST life problems going on- unstable family home, d**khead ex-boyfriend, failing all her classes- so what does she need? A new job to take her mind off things. She starts work at the local posh cinema, where there is cinnamon dust on the popcorn and guacamole on tap. It serves it’s purpose and distracts her for a while, although the job isn’t the only thing distracting her…. enter Harry. Charismatic, handsome, cheeky Harry. Everyone, including Audrey’s brother, warns her off him, but does she listen? I don’t need to answer that.

We then go through the him-chasing-her, her-not-being-interested, him-going-off-her, her-changing-her-mind-and-wanting-the-attention-back, to eventually… well I’d best not spoil it. 🙂

I laughed at some of the funny things she says to her girl friends, and some of the things she thinks in her head. I wasn’t keen on the secondary character of Leroy- I think Holly Bourne put way too much emphasis on his sexuality. Every time he was mentioned, it was mentioned. It wasn’t necessary. It was kind of like she was making sure we knew he was gay, by throwing in the campest character she could come up with and giving him every stereotype associated with it.

There were some great bits in Audrey’s conversation with Alice, including this gem:

“Essentially my vagina had a Gandalf standing at the entrance, and he thought Milo’s dick was a fire demon.”

I don’t generally read YA, and this was definitely that. The writing style was overly aimed at teenagers and YA. Although a lot of the phrases and sayings were a little too childish- perhaps more suited to a year 7 rather than a 6th form character.

Anywho, it passed the time and I whizzed through it.  I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it actually!



Perfect Evil – Alex Kava 

Phew! I am done! Sorry, but my genuine feeling when I finished this book was relief.

Becca and I did a book swap last year and this was her pick for me ,and it has taken me ages to get around to reading it properly. I started it when she gave it to me and I got majorly put off by the descriptions of what happens in this book.

This is the first novel by Alex Kava and introduces us to FBI Agent Extraordinaire Maggie O’Dell, a criminal profiler who is haunted by a previous case. O’Dell is sent to a town in Nebraska to assist the local Sheriff’s department  with a profile for the killer after a young boy is found dead. Our local Sherriff Nick Morelli is inexperienced and while lovely is totally not up to the task-it always baffles me that you can vote for your Sherriff and they are not appointed on merit, seniority or suitability for the role??

During the investigation another boy is kidnapped and later killed, then Nick’s nephew Timmy is also taken by the killer leaving Maggie, Nick and Timmy’s mum, Christine,  racing to get him back.

As I have said the descriptions in this book of what happens to the boys was off-putting for me and for someone who likes to read YA fiction I just found this to be incredibly disturbing. Instead when I decided that I was going to get this book done I focused more on the relationship between Nick and Maggie as you could see it growing and I hope this is continued in later books  but I did chose to skim read some of the grosser descriptions as I do not need to know that the killer was biting the kids!?!?

In terms of writing I like Kava’s style as while this is the first book due to the way it’s written I felt as though I was coming in in the middle of O’Dell’s story as there are lots of mention of her previous target, Stuckey, and the mental and physical impact he has had on her. However what I really didn’t enjoy is that there really wasn’t a clear ending, O’Dell and Morelli don’t get to rescue Timothy in some heroic way, it felt more like they were bumbling around in the dark graveyard and Timmy saved himself with help from his Mum, Nick and Maggie were kind of redundant. Also, they let the killer get away- Twice!!! Even when you think it’s all over and I was like ok he’s got away. The killer comes back for Timmy again- and still gets away!!! Just to show that the Sheriff’s department had arrested someone they arrest and charge a creepy janitor and a corrupt despicable deputy sheriff both of which are guilty of other things, but not actually of killing the boys which was also infuriating as you know that while they have been charged they will probably get found not guilty at trial.  I get that Kava is playing the long game here as at the end of the book we find that Stuckey has escaped- and if he doesn’t team up with this killer I will eat my hat! But for someone who likes a clean ending where the good guys win and the bad guys get their comeuppance this was very disappointing for me and I wished I hadn’t stayed up till midnight on a work night for that ending.

I wouldn’t re-read this book, but I do like O’Dell and Morelli so maybe I’ll read the next book. For me  this is a solid three stars as I am deducting a star for being gross and then another star for having a confusing and daft ending.

So, overall Becca really enjoyed her swap but Kate is now having nightmares for the rest of her life! 🙂 Time to think of what we can swap next……?

Has anyone read either of the two books we swapped this time? We’d love to hear what you thought.

Happy Reading, B & K x