The story follows Laurel as she awakes in a warehouse to find the words “GET OUT” written on her arm. With no memory of who she is, she must fight to survive and uncover the mystery of her identity, as well as who is hunting her and why.
Laurel is a strong, intelligent and independent female character. She’s exactly the kind of protagonist I wished for as a reader in my teens. This story focuses on Laurel’s battle to remember who she is and to stay alive. There is no love story and no stronger or bumbling male sidekick to make her look better, which was really refreshing.
As each character was introduced I found myself questioning, along with Laurel, whether they could be trusted. Throughout her journey she is faced with various physical challenges where she uses a perfect balance of wit and muscle memory to believably defend herself while trying to remember who she is.
I was excited and nervous when I put my hand up to review this book. Excited because both the author and publisher are South Australians and it is speculative fiction, one of my favourite genres! Why was I nervous? I love supporting locals but what if the story wasn’t any good? Thank goodness S J Matthews made this review easy for me because it was fantastic!
The book is well written and paced well. There are a lot of questions from the beginning but you won’t feel like the author was purposely holding back answers just to keep you hooked. S J Matthews tells the story in such a brilliant way that it’s easy to visualise the characters and their location, allowing the reader to easily follow along and feel invested in the story.
It’s hard to say too much more about the story without giving anything away. Readers who enjoy fast paced stories with mystery and action should enjoy this book.
Reviewed by Jessica Incoll
Rating out of 10: 8
Distributed by: Elephant House Press
Released: August 2018
Disclaimer: Elephant House Press was co-founded by Elizabeth Calder who is a contributor to Glam Adelaide.