Book Reviews

S.T.A.G.S. – book review

Title: S.T.A.G.S.

Author: M. A. Bennett (Twitter/Instagram)

Published: 2017         

Genre: Young Adult Thriller

Rating: 4/5 Stars

“I think I might be a murderer”

I received this book and the sequel DOGS for the DOGS bookstagram tour from Darkroom Tours, M A Bennett and Hot Key Books. All opinions are my own and have not been influenced by receiving the books.

In the recent past, I read The Island by M A Bennett, and wasn’t a fan. If I hadn’t already signed up for this tour before reading, I don’t think I would have picked up STAGS. If that were the case, I would have missed out on this thrilling book.

Greer is a scholarship student at the prestigious STAGS (St Aidan the Great School), mostly occupied by teenage students from wealthy and privileged backgrounds. It’s a stepping-stone to the best universities in England: Oxford and Cambridge. Greer is an outsider, struggling to fit in. We have the Medievals, who are the ‘popular’ students other students mimic them, and idolise them in a way. She thinks this might be about to change after receiving an invitation for a weekend of huntin’ shootin’ fishin’. The weekend will change their lives forever.

I love that this book is set in England, I have mentioned before I hate that there are not as many books set in the UK for the YA (young adult) genre. There are phrases and things described in the book that are familiar to me and activities that I have some knowledge about.

I think Greer is a relatable character, in a way very similar to how I was in school. I can empathise and identify with her. The Medievals are bitchy (apologies for the word but that is how I would describe them) and bullies but through the book you doubt their intentions, their motives as their demeanour and how they act changes in different situations through the book. Their leader Henry is charismatic, good looking and charming. He is from a known family who have a legacy through history and at STAGS, so he is a well-respected member of the school community. Shafeen and Chanel are our secondary characters, who are well written and despite coming from wealthy backgrounds, they do not seem to fit in with the order at STAGS.

This book has interesting characters, it’s easy to read, the story flowed. Everything wound together in the end and provided a satisfying conclusion. I really enjoy the style it’s written in. Greer is writing an account of what has happened in the past. She give hints and clues that something BIG happens throughout but never fully reveals who or what it relates to apart from referencing murder. I could guess when reading, something wasn’t quite right the book kept me reading and kept me guessing throughout.

One thing I hate in books, this is in general not specifically for this book, is cliff-hangers. This book of course, with it being a series ends on one – duh duh duhhh! Yes, this is a series so it is inevitable there would be some sort of cliff-hanger, as is the case in many series. I was glad that I had the sequel to hand so I could delve straight back into the mysterious world of STAGS.

Until next time, and happy reading. Lou x

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