Monday, September 6, 2021

Book Review: NEVER SAW ME COMING by Vera Kurian


Never Saw Me ComingNever Saw Me Coming by Vera Kurian
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Oh, the premise! What a great plot for a murder mystery/thriller! Vera Kurian's storytelling in NEVER SAW ME COMING had me intrigued from page one.

I've noticed many reviewers on Goodreads have commented that this book reads like it was intended for young adults (YA). To be clear, this book is not for the young adult audience. There are certain rules that apply to books written for a young adult audience, and this book steps outside those rules. This is definitely an adult book. Just because a narrative voice sounds similar to those you may find in young adult books does not make it one.

A few of the things I loved about this book:
1. The first chapter sucked me right into the story.
2. The internal exploration of psychopaths was fascinating.
3. The reunion (no spoilers) of a character and his family at the end actually choked me up with tears! Nice surprise there.

While I loved the premise of this book, there were multiple elements that kept me from giving it a five-star review:

1. I was overwhelmed by the large cast of characters. At first I thought this was a storytelling device to keep the reader guessing about the serial killer, and who knows, maybe it was, but when the killer was revealed, no spoilers here, I was disappointed. Instead of having such a large cast of characters, I wish Kurian would have developed the three main characters more.
2. Personal pet peeves: lots of crude language and unnecessary sex scenes
3. The changes in points-of-view were constant and confusing.
4. The referrals to pop-culture, including social-media hashtags and brand names, were tiring.

My favorite passage from the story:

"Charles was too curious about meeting another psychopath to be annoyed. But Emma didn't fit the bill of what he thought they were supposed to be. He thought psychopaths were supposed to be ... well, like him. Charming and charismatic and able to get what they wanted from people. She seemed more like someone had taken a mouse and dipped it into warm water to make tea."

NEVER SAW ME COMING by Vera Kurian was a fascinating page-turner with an insightful exploration of psychopathy.

[I received an advance copy of this book for free from the publisher via NetGalley. This in no way influenced my opinion.]

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