Saturday, March 5, 2011

Sink or Swim by Stacy Juba

Taking a page out of the popular reality series, Sink or Swim is a fun and sometime unnerving novel about the stalking of celebrities, and even pseudo celebrities including reality stars. Often, just being in the public eye for a moment can cause a tailspin. That is the case of Cassidy Novak, the contestant and second place winner of the game show Sink or Swim.

Mortified and unaware of the amount of people she has affected, she leaves the show in the most undignified of ways, by walking the plank. Knowing she will have to go back to a job she does not care for, she is surprised when a publicity agent wants to sign her up. As she drifts back into her usual routine, she finds that her life is anything but usual. Creepy and unusual people begin to follow her. One young girl wants to be her, to remake herself in Cassidy’s image. However, even worse is the stalker that leaves her gifts and steals personal items from her parent’s home.

More than unnerved she brings in the police and shares her horror. As the notes and gifts continue to show up, the stalker is getting closer and closer. The real terror begins when the winner of Sink or Swim is found murdered. Cassidy fears that her stalker could have the same designs on her. When another member of the popular cast of contestants to Sink or Swim is murdered, Cassidy no longer knows what to do. Initially she hides out with her parent’s friends, but decides she will not be driven away. Will she come home only to be the next body on the list?

Stacy Juba has put together a story about the reality game shows that are popular currently. She takes the celebrity status of the cast and creates a real life murder and mystery. The characters are well written and priceless. You either love them or hate them, as is the way of reality TV. Trying to figure out in this cast of characters who is the most sinister is thrown off balance, when the one most odd is the first one murdered. Throw in a red herring or two with the wacky personalities now following her after the show, and twist in another few people that are new to her and yet she feels compelled to trust.

You get a mix for a possible disaster where not everything is what it seems. The surface of those you think you know is often a fa├žade. This is a great whodunit mystery with a thread of romance throughout. Be careful what you wish for, it may not be what you expect when you are gifted just that.

This is a wonderful and fast-paced, with a cast of characters that could rival Survivor or the Amazing Race. The contestants could not be more real. The romance is just right and tagged as an aside to the actual story with is about the dangers of celebrity. A satisfying read.

Rating 4/5
Sink or Swim

This book was recieved as a free download from the author. All opinions are my own based off my reading and understanding of the material.

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