Rating: 3.5 stars
I listened to Ketchup Clouds via audiobook, that is not why I gave the book 3.5 stars. The audiobook was wonderfully narrated and made it enjoyable to listen to. The audiobook I would have to give 4.5 stars. Narrators can really make or break a story.
The book itself is written in the form of letters, letters that a young high school girl in London sends to a death row inmate in Texas. This young girl calls herself Zoe, and writes letters from a fake address to send to this man on death row, explaining how she too, is a murderer.
Each letter sent explains a different part of her life leading up to the death of someone she cared about, the loss of another person she cared about, and the betrayal that lead to the death. You never really know until the very end who it is that died. Or how they died. I flip flopped back and forth between a couple of people that she was close with. Trying to figure out what possibly could have happened.
That being said, I felt like it was normal ‘teenage’ stuff during the entire novel. Not a whole lot of excitement, not a whole lot of plot line. ‘Zoe’ just goes through and tells bits of information here and there, how she feels or thinks, or how she relates to the death row inmate to whom she is writing. She also writes about how she blames herself and what she thinks of each situation to which she is writing about.
I do think this is a good book on how to not blame yourself for the death of someone else. I do believe that a lot of people blame themselves for situations outside of them, thoughts of “what could I have done differently?” tend to be asked a lot. We always tend to blame ourselves when someone close to us dies, or something happens to them. Like we could have stopped it. We like to put the blame on ourselves. It is human nature.
I liked the end of the book. Some book reviews I read didn’t like the ending, and I can understand why. I think it ended how the story needed to. But, to prevent spoilers, I won’t say what happened. I think it depends on the reader, and what you like as an ending. The only kind of endings I don’t like, are ones that don’t really ‘end’ but just kind of stop, almost like the author got bored or couldn’t finish. Where it leaves you wanting more, but the book isn’t going to be a series, so there is no waiting for the next installment. It just suddenly ends, the carpet ripped right out from underneath you. For example, Eleanor and Park. That ending left me dumbfounded with a WTF look all day trying to figure out what in the world just happened. Those endings, no thank you! Same with Looking For Alaska, that wasn’t really an ending I was expecting or wanting and I was left almost not ever wanting to read another John Green novel again.
Do I suggest this book? Well, if you are all out of other reading materials, and you want to read something a bit different out on the market than the normal vampire, paranormal, and hot steamy romance, sure. Will you be disappointed? Maybe, maybe not. I didn’t go into this book with high expectations, or low ones at that, but I am still glad I read it. It was different. And I am all about trying to step out of my comfort zones in reading this year.