Pretty Is by Maggie MitchellTitle: Pretty Is
Author: Maggie Mitchell
Format: Paperback, ARC – in exchange for an honest review
Links: Goodreads | Amazon UK | Amazon US

Blurb: Everyone thought we were dead. What else could they think?

One summer, nearly twenty years ago, two twelve year olds were abducted and kept captive in the forest.

There they formed a bond that could never be broken.

What really happened in the woods that summer?

Review: When I saw, ‘Pretty Is’ was perfect for fans of ‘The Ice Twins’ (which you can see my review of, here) I just knew I had to read it. ‘Pretty Is’ is set from the point of view of Lois and Chloe; the two girls which, at just twelve years old, were kidnapped and held captive in a cabin in the woods together. But now, twenty years on, both are older, wiser and have moved on from the experience. Or have they? With both of them leading extremely different lives, something brings them together again and we finally find out what happened in the woods that summer all those years ago.

First and foremost, this is not your typical abduction / kidnapper story. It is so much deeper and complicated than that. Even after having read it, I’m still going over and over it in my head trying to work out the psychological state of the characters.  The two girls; Lois and Chloe were incredibly diverse, confusing and complicated characters. I loved the way we unravel them, layer by layer throughout the book – there’s always something new to learn about these two. But, despite them being so obviously emotionally damaged, the absolutely terrifying thing the author manages to do is allow you to relate to them.

Similarly, our kidnapper – Zed – was one of the strangest characters I’ve ever read about. I couldn’t work him out at all. I would loved to have heard some of the story from his point of view to gain a deeper insight into the workings of his mind but I guess that was the point; we’ll never know the full insight. Which is what makes this book, for me, even more disturbing. A big thing that stood out for me was how beautifully this book was written. Maggie Mitchell has a real knack for good, hard storytelling and being able to pull you into the characters mind so much so that sometimes you feel like you are them.

‘Pretty Is’ was completely compelling and captivating and seductive and teasing all the way to the very end. It’s confusing and psychologically disturbing and makes you question your own mind and your own intentions in the weirdest and most daunting of ways. The perfect book to kick start the new year with.




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