Quicksand is a courtroom thriller about an eighteen year old girl named Maja who is on trial for a shooting at her high school that was completed by her boyfriend. Throughout the book, we’ll learn what Maja’s role in the shooting was. Did she know about it? Was she part of it? Guilty to innocent, you’ll find out before the end of the book!
Quicksand was my first buddy read (of many to come!) with Sam from Clues and Reviews. I was immediately intrigued by this book because of how similar it sounded to Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas, which you may recall, I LOVED. Unfortunately, Quicksand fell flat for me.
I will start out by saying that I loved the premise. Given how much I loved Dangerous Girls, I was really excited about the plot. What I found was that hardly any of the book actually took place in the courtroom. Most of it was spent doing flashbacks of times that were before the shooting. While I can appreciate the author’s attempt at giving us some insight into the characters who are eventually wrapped up in this major crime, it often felt unnecessary to me. It felt like it wasn’t adding anything to what I already knew about the characters, and I found myself wanting to skim those flashbacks because they weren’t holding my attention. There are some flashbacks to the time of the shooting, or right before, which I did really enjoy. I think those were perfect for the story, and I loved being able to see the shooting in the past and then fast forward to the future and hear about it again during the trial. That said, there was a ton of talk about the trial but hardly any actual trial happening. I kept waiting for it to happen, but what I kept getting were flashbacks to long before the shooting took place. It left me wanting, but not in a good way.
The other thing I really struggled with was the writing. The sentences felt very choppy, and it felt like the author was trying TOO hard to write the way people talk, using lots of sarcastic words in quotations and run on sentences, but to me it was distracting. I’m trying to be lenient because this book has been translated from its original Swedish, so I’m not sure what was lost in translation and what was the author’s writing style.
Last, Quicksand was marketed as a thriller, however I felt like the suspense was lacking for me. Almost all of the characters were really unlikeable, which is okay in some circumstances, but honestly I wasn’t on the edge of my seat waiting to find out what happened.
I really went back and forth on the rating, because the first 70-75% of the book was 2 stars for me, but the last 25-30% I’d say was 3.5 or 4 stars, because the trial finally happened and we were actually getting somewhere. Because I struggled through 3/4 of the book, I’m going to land at 2.5 stars. I’m sorry to say that this wasn’t a winner for me. I can’t say I’d recommend this book, but if the premise intrigued you, as mentioned above, I’d recommend checking out Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas.
For another opinion, please check out Sam’s review at Clues and Reviews!
Thank you to Netgalley, Malin Persson Giolito, and Other Press for an ARC of Quicksand in exchange for an honest review. Quicksand will be published on March 7th, 2017.