“Bad things happen to good people”, quote that probably summarises this YA thriller perfectly.
The Deviants is my second read by C.J. Skuse. I first encountered C.J.’s fantastic “keep you on the edge of your seat” writing when I read “Monster” last year, and it does remain my favourite.
However “The Deviants” did not disappoint. The characters could not have been more different from each other, but as a team, they just simply gelled.
Ella is our main character and our track star, training for the upcoming Commonwealth games with a penchant for exacting justice where she deems it necessary.
Max is destined to take over the very thriving family business from his Dad and comes across as not trying to be all he can be, and when feeling pressure mounting makes questionable choices to deal with what he sees as “stress”.
Corey, is a victim of bullying and a cerebral palsy sufferer, but lives life to the full and beyond his physical limits, and last but not least, Fallon the darer who lives in a farm with her mother Rosie, road kill collector.
I could spend this review telling you all about what these guys are up to some situation more hilarious than others, but that would simply spoil it.
I would rather focus on what I enjoyed the most, such as the author ability to write about everyday life events, some more tragic than others and made room for the small things that lightened them up of their seriousness when the story required it. There were dark moments and the directions taken for some of the characters will not make everyone happy.
While “Monster” was exploring surviving instinct in the face of a dangerous situation and how to survive it, “The Deviants” invites the reader to explore a different side. The one that is completely out of your control, the one that takes the decision away from you, the one where fate has the last word, and you might just not like it.