You know when you read a synopsis and see a gorgeous and you instantly know that this is a book that you’ll love, but then you read it and realize that it’s not as great as you originally thought it would be. That’s how I feel here.
Premeditated started off with a bang! I mean, when the first chapter starts with this:
Killing someone’s easier than you think. All it takes is decision, aim, and follow-through. Like basketball, only you shouldn’t expect people to leap to their feet and cheer if you hit the free throw.
The whole thing’s a done deal in a matter of seconds.
Revenge, on the other hand, and I mean real, calculated, make-him-sorry-he-was-ever-born vengeance, takes time and planning and patience. You have to smile when you want to scream. You have to look your target in the eye when you’d rather claw his eyes out. And you have to ignore the slow-spreading burn in your gut until it turns to ice and sets your resolve so completely you can’t turn away without splintering.
You are expecting some next level revenge plot that will have you staying up at night trying to find out what happens next. And when I first started Premeditated I felt all those things and then some.
Dinah left Oregon to come back to her home town to find Brooks Walden and make his life a living hell. He did something to Claire, Dinah’s cousin, which left her in the hospital room. As Claire fights for her life, Dinah wants to make sure that Brooks pay for what he did.
In order for this revenge plan to work, Dinah ditched her old clothes, dyed her hair blonde, and enrolled in the private school that Claire was suppose to go to. There, she will befriend Brooks and then ruin his life.
Sadly, the moment Dinah and Brooks meet, is also the moment when you start to realize something. Homegirl isn’t all that smart. She’s angry, yes, and very vengeful, which is great for this kind of novel, but instead of using some of those brain cells to think of a plan she doesn’t really do anything. She places Brooks in the enemy list and gets close to him, but nothing else.
For someone who wanted to get revenge so badly, she’s kind of useless. Thankfully, her friends are there and do help out. In fact, they do most of the work, the only thing Dinah does is get close to Brooks and distract him…I guess…and maybe fall for him? I guess. It may seem like I’m exaggerating, but I’m not. Every single plan to ruin Brooks was done by her friends.
Despite this, I did like was how Dinah’s short sightedness does carry on throughout the book. This might sound weird, but hear me out. When I finished the novel, I was bummed that I figured things out within the first third of the book. It was really obvious, but Dinah, being Dinah, allowed her vengeful side to take over and not really think of what was happening around her.
I was annoyed when I finished, but looking back, I realized that this sort of thing could have only work if Dinah wasn’t able to think logically. Knowing this, do I knock the book for being predictable and having a heroine who can’t see past her own anger, or give kudos that McQuein created a character that wouldn’t have seen what was right in front of her due to her grief?
As a reader, it was frustrating for me to see Dinah miss the blatant clues, but she is still struggling with what happened. A lot of her anger comes from not being there for Claire, so to channel that into fixing things makes sense. That still didn’t stop me from says, “Wow, you’re stupid,” when she finally had that aha moment.
Other than that, there are a lot of great things in this novel. McQuein is a good writer and the dialogue did feel real. I also like how the romance aspect of the novel didn’t take over. In fact, Dinah wouldn’t allow it so I liked that. But at the same time, I didn’t understand the point of Dinah’s mom, and the some parts of the ending didn’t ring true to me.
Would I recommend it: It’s not the greatest, but Give it a Try!