Called “a PG-13 version of Gone Girl” by Kirkus, Unnatural Deeds is a novel of infatuation and obsession with an electrifying ending that readers won’t see coming.”
Victoria Zell doesn’t fit in, not that she cares what anyone thinks. She and her homeschooled boyfriend, Andrew, are inseparable. All they need is each other. That is, until Zachary Zimmerman joins her homeroom. Within an hour of meeting, he convinces good-girl Vic to cut class. And she can’t get enough of that rush.
Despite Vic’s loyalty to Andrew, she finds her life slowly entwining with Z’s. Soon she’s lying to everyone she knows and breaking all the rules to be with Z. She can’t get enough of him—or unraveling the stories of the family he’s determined to keep hidden.
Except Z’s not the only one with a past. Straight-laced Vic is hiding her own secrets… secrets that are about to destroy everything in her path.
This book was a slow burn. I finished if in about two days and the ending shook me to my core. Its a cute romance with a darkness that foreshadows from the start. Overall a good read and I recommend it to anyone that likes a little suspenseful teen romance.
Now heres the meat of me review (no spoilers): I kinda wished we didn’t know the “ending” because it gave the whole book a gruesome undertone but it also kept you guessing, the author was very good about not giving the end away I really never saw it coming.
But said ending… it made me rethink and question the whole plot. You’re along for the narrators ride through her self induced emotional torment, part of you is asking “what are you doing!?” and part of you is egging her on to see what happens. Very well written, very personal and dynamic. Very good read.
I just want us all to take a moment here and first appreciate how eerily gorgeous this cover is. The cover is what first attracted me to even look at this book. When I started reading this, I had very high hopes based off of the description and the cover and Cyn Balog MORE than delivered on my expectations.
I don't want to go into too many details and spoil the book for you, so I am going to be a little vague in my review. The entire story is told from the point of view of Vic as she is laying injured in the woods and recording her story on her cell phone trying to explain how she found herself in this situation to her boyfriend Andrew. Oh, Andrew! One thing Vic and I agree on his how sweet Andrew is and how he deserves such a better life than the one he has been handed.
Cyn Balog's writing is beautiful and captivating. She immediately pulled me in and I when I wasn't reading, I was thinking about reading and wondering what was about to happen next. Having the story told from Vic's point of view really immersed me in just how obsessive and anxiety ridden she is as a character. I also really enjoyed how each chapter started out with either a newspaper clipping about the murder or a police interview of someone close to Vic. It added a separate perspective to the story outside of Vic's personal reflections of everything that lead up to the incident.
If you haven't already added Unnatural Deeds to your TBR list, you should do so immediately!
I have a love/hate relationship with this book.
I have a love/hate relationship with this book.
Basic gist: Vic tells the story to her boyfriend, Andrew, all about how she cheated on him, falling for the new guy at school, Z. The ending is OUT THERE. If you don't read books because of cheating, don't count this one out for that reason. Seriously.
What I loved:
I loved the bits of interviews, newspaper articles, and so on that preceded each chapter. They were little clues to the end game that kept me invested in the story, needing to know what happened. I loved that, until almost the final chapter, I had no clue where this was going. I didn’t even know who was a good guy and who was a bad guy. I loved that it kept me guessing.
What I didn’t care for:
I wasn’t really invested in the day to day play-by-play that Vic was giving us. It bored me a little. I didn’t like the decisions she made, though I understand that’s part of her character, and I don’t knock stars for that. I just didn’t like some of the things she did. Actually, aside from her stupid decisions, I can kind of relate to Vic. She feels like an outsider, doesn’t really feel like she belongs and can’t connect to her peers. Gosh, that was me in high school!
As I read books I tend to have a star rating in mind, this one jumped quickly from about a 2 up to a 3.5. This is the kind of book that seemed, to me, tedious as I read it. But when I read that ending? Wow. Blew me away. I actually didn’t quite understand what was happening until it was happening. Suddenly I was backpedaling, saying, WAIT! WHAT??? Yeah, it was good. So trippy.
So, do I recommend this book? Yes. But go into this knowing that the pacing is slow and steady, the clues are there, but you’re unlikely to put it together until the very end. And you’ll probably keep thinking about the story afterward, I know I did!
I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.