Review of S.T.A.G.S. by M.A. Bennett

Read: 13th April 2019 – 14th April 2019

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐

Spoilers in review: Yes

Greer is a scholarship student at St Aidan the Great boarding school, a really expensive private school that’s known colloquially as S.T.A.G.S.. She, and a couple of other people who don’t fit in to the norm of being white and coming from a historically rich family, are at the bottom of the pecking order. When the ringleaders of the school invite her and two others to a weekend of bloodsports, they decide to go along and try to enjoy themselves, only to find that they’re the ones being hunted.

I really like Bennett’s writing style, it’s clear and engaging and sucked me right in. I had fun while reading this, and if you’re looking for something fun to fill a few hours, then go right ahead and read this.

But honestly I was expecting more out of it. The premise made it sound like the ‘misfits’ were going to be in a lot more danger than they ended up being in. It was described as being ‘one deadly weekend’, and to fit that criteria then at least one person needed to actually die as a result of the bloodsports. There is a single death in this book, and it wasn’t because of the bloodsports and wasn’t one of the misfits, so it doesn’t count for this. Don’t promise me death if you aren’t going to deliver !!

Greer herself is obsessed with old films because she watches them with her Dad. That’s fine on its own, but it got to the point where every few pages she was describing something by saying ‘It’s like in that old film X where Y happened.’ Funnily enough, not everyone has seen all of these films, and novels are supposed to have actual written description in them. If this had happened only once or twice it wouldn’t be an issue, but it felt like it was constant.

Also, everything about the ending felt completely unnecessary to me. I think this would’ve been a lot more powerful if it had just been a bunch of rich white kids deciding to kill those they deemed beneath them, rather than it being part of a centuries old conspiracy, but hey that’s just me.

I don’t think that I’m going to be reading any more of Bennett’s books. Both of her books that I’ve read so far have just been okay, and their endings have annoyed me, so I’m going to invest my time elsewhere.

I recieved a digital copy through Netgalley in return for an honest review.

Review originally written in 2019

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