Book Reviews · Books


STAGS S.T.A.G.S by M.A. Bennett
Released: 10th August 2017
Keywords: YA, Thriller, Hunt, Mystery, Bullying, Violence, Contemporary, Romance, Animal deaths

Nine students. Three bloodsports. One deadly weekend.

It is the autumn term and Greer MacDonald is struggling to settle into the sixth form at the exclusive St. Aidan the Great boarding school, known to its privileged pupils as S.T.A.G.S. Just when she despairs of making friends Greer receives a mysterious invitation with three words embossed upon on it: huntin’ shootin’ fishin’. When Greer learns that the invitation is to spend the half term weekend at the country manor of Henry de Warlencourt, the most popular and wealthy boy at S.T.A.G.S., she is as surprised as she is flattered.

But when Greer joins the other chosen few at the ancient and sprawling Longcross Hall, she realises that Henry’s parents are not at home; the only adults present are a cohort of eerily compliant servants. The students are at the mercy of their capricious host, and, over the next three days, as the three bloodsports – hunting, shooting and fishing – become increasingly dark and twisted, Greer comes to the horrifying realisation that those being hunted are not wild game, but the very misfits Henry has brought with him from school… “

I went in to this book expecting it to be way more gritty and gruesome with less of the romance aspect which is mostly why my rating is on the lower side. Sometimes it even felt like I was reading a middle grade novel and as we are in the protagonists head some of her thoughts were very immature and inappropriate for the situation so perhaps I’m not the target audience for this. Nonetheless it was still a pretty fun read and focused hard on discrimination by class/race which is obviously a very relevant topic.

Too much focus from our main girl on how hot the main guy is and way too many movie referencing for me. The actual ‘hunt’ parts were more enjoyable and there were a few times that got my heart rate up. Plot twists were mostly predictable but I did enjoy the character of Henry (gave me some Cardan from The Cruel Prince vibes).

Would recommend for contemporary fans that like a hint of thriller, wouldn’t recommend for someone looking to read a gritty intense thriller.

My rating: 3/5 stars


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