Dear Killer by Katherine Ewell (2 out of 5)
This had promise. Great cover, great plot, written by a 17-year old that won a prestigious writing contest. Good blurbs on the back. It is said to appeal to those who like Dexter and the books of Mr. Jay Asher. All of these things befit what usually means a great read. It is a good read, just not a great read. And that ending? Well, friends, that ending goes down as truly unbelievable. And not unbelievable in a good way (EMF).
London is on its toes, keeping alert and trying to bust “The Perfect Killer.” Her victims come to her not by conventional methods of determining who get it, but through letters left in a secret mailbox. Kit, a 17-year old high school student, IS “The Perfect Killer.” She has no coda on what she does, believing not in right, nor wrong, just in the fact that there are people needing to be killed, and she’s the executor (literally). Kit is doing a smash-up job of this, until she makes the mistake that ends up undoing anyone who has no soul in orchestrating murder; she becomes friends with her next victim and double screws herself by becoming buddy-buddy with the detective on the case! A good portion of the book was spent with yours truly trying to figure out why the hell she would do such a self-defeating thing. The answer to why is never really obtained. Some of the logic in this book is not logic, as much as it is head-scratching confusion. The character of Kit, while entertaining in her own nihilistic way, makes no damn sense. Understandable that she may or may not fall for someone who defers her from her agenda, or that her soul is as vapid as a Tupperware container that she has to be on good terms with the person who may eventually put her behind bars, but you get the impression that the killing is a huge part of who she is, that for her to sabotage herself by giving into these damnable feelings, is a hard pill to swallow. The male foils in the novel have some sense of morality and intelligence, and therefore, it was a little hard to believe that they didn’t catch on sooner. Kit is the type of teen who seems more worried about the latest teen drama on the BBC or the latest sale at Marks & Spencer than she does getting caught for being a serial killer. Why would someone sabotage themselves so spectacularly? More psychological background needed there, to answer some questions that come as you read the book.
A lot of it came down to extreme disappointment. The minute Goodreads friends assured me that it was similar to Dexter, one would believe they were in for some good old fashioned gore. Instead, it would not have felt out of place if Kit had strangled someone with a Abercrombie & Fitch bag, then skipped off down the street to play jacks with the boy that she is friends with, whom she has to kill next. No amount of brainpower fires up answers here. No scenario in my head came out on the roulette wheel of sense. A hard book to read when you are someone who questions things. If you read lightly and really don’t give a pound note about logic, this is the book for you. Sadly, it was not the book for me.