Monday, July 27, 2015

Review: What We Knew by Barbara Stewart

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Review: What We Knew by Barbara Stewart
What We Knew
Barbara Stewart
Genre: Horror, Mystery, YA
Publication date: July 14th 2015
by St. Martin's Griffin

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When a local myth starts to seem like a dangerous reality, two girls are set on a path that could change their lives forever

"When I was little, I imagined a monster: Scaly hands. Pits for eyes..."

When Tracy and her best friend, Lisa, were kids, stories about a man—a creep who exposes himself to little girls—kept them out of the woods and in their own backyards. But Tracy and Lisa aren't so little anymore, and the man in the woods is nothing but a stupid legend. Right?

But someone is in the woods. Someone is watching. And he knows all their secrets, secrets they can't tell anyone—not even each other.

"Monsters don't exist."

Lisa's just being paranoid. At least that’s what Tracy thinks. But when a disturbing "gift" confirms her worst fears, it sets the girls on a dangerous journey that takes them beyond the edge of the woods. But reality is more terrifying than the most chilling myth, and what they find will test the bonds of friendship, loyalty, and love.

"Once upon a time, two girls were lost in the woods."

In Barbara's Stewart's What We Knew, Tracy and Lisa can't destroy the evil they'll face, but can they stop it from destroying each other?
-A copy was provided by St. Martin's Griffin for review-

Going into this I was hoping it would be a great horror/mystery, but it didn’t wow me. Yes, it had its creepy parts and a bit of mystery to it, but most of the story just wasn’t keeping my interest. It does cover some pretty awful topics such as rape and sexual abuse. I thought that part of it was good. (Not good in that I enjoyed it, but in the way it covered those things so well.) There is also cheating, which I really can’t stand. I know that it happens in real life, so I get that it is in books too. I just don’t care to read about it. It makes me really hate the characters. I did like the mystery behind Banana Man or whatever he was called though. Mostly though, it was just the characters being stupid and unlikeable. The goods parts of the story are the only reason this gets a middle rating from me.

Tracy was a character that I initially liked, but then grew to have very strong dislike for her. She has been through a tough situation with being raped and I really felt a lot of sympathy for her over the situation and that only one person knows. She is too ashamed to even tell her best friend. Also, her big brother left and hasn’t been in contact with her. She pretty much spends all her time hanging out with her boyfriend and friends getting drunk and high. After she catches her BFF making out with one of their friends (who is not her own BF) she is a bit harsh towards her, but for good reason. Cheating is not okay. Then, when she cheats on her own boyfriend, she expects sympathy. Ummm no. I no longer like you or feel bad for you. And, she kind of becomes a really shitty friend. Everything is all about her, and she doesn’t see that her BFF is going though some seriously messed up stuff.

Instead of this being about the creepy Banana Man, it becomes more about these girls who mess up and mess around. Who are pretty crappy friends to the other. Oh, and lie and think that the other is being paranoid or dramatic about something that is truly happening. Yes, there is some super creepy stuff going on, and they are sure that it is Banana Man or something like that. Or is it one of their friends messing with them? Really in the end I think that how things all came about was good, but getting there was a bit hard for me. I didn’t care for the characters so I had to force myself to continue so I could see how everything all ended with the creepy dude in the woods. There were some great parts covering some tough issues, but it wasn’t enough to save this book. It wasn’t a bad read or anything, but it just didn’t do much for me either. I was not compelled to talk to people about it, and even had to flip through the book to refresh myself enough to write this review. It was easily forgettable within days of reading.

3 Stars
3 Hot Espressos

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I'm no good at this, but I'm a mom of one little girl who really thinks she is a princess. I love reading all sorts of books (horror being a favorite genre of mine), love meeting new people, drinking lots of coffee, and eating chocolate. If you want to know anything else about me, just ask.
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2 Responses to “Review: What We Knew by Barbara Stewart”

  1. Ksenia

    Great review, Amy. It’s always hard to rate and review books when there are parts you liked and parts that didn’t work for you at all.