I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Published by Penguin on February 18, 2020
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Thrillers & Suspense, Girls & Women, Social Themes, Violence
Format: ARC, eBook
Source: NetGalley, Publisher
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Hannah Capin's Foul is Fair is a bloody, thrilling revenge fantasy for the girls who have had enough. Perfect for fans of Karen M. McManus and A Good Girl's Guide to Murder. Golden boys beware: something wicked this way comes.
Jade and her friends Jenny, Mads, and Summer rule their glittering LA circle. Untouchable, they have the kind of power other girls only dream of. Every party is theirs and the world is at their feet. Until the night of Jade's sweet sixteen, when they crash a St. Andrew’s Prep party. The night the golden boys choose Jade as their next target.
They picked the wrong girl.
Sworn to vengeance, Jade transfers to St. Andrew’s Prep. She plots to destroy each boy, one by one. She'll take their power, their lives, and their control of the prep school's hierarchy. And she and her coven have the perfect way in: a boy named Mack, whose ambition could turn deadly.
Where do I begin with Foul is Fair? The premise of the story was one that had intrigued me wholeheartedly. A revenge thriller with a feministic twist. A classic retelling based upon Macbeth that became darker and darker the further you travelled through its pages. I want to include a trigger warning about the book before I go any further – It is a revenge tale after a sexual assault. The premise is one that I would have expected to grab me and hold me hostage but the preceding emotion it left me with is an uncontrollable anger – the narrative within the story could be quite dangerous.
It unfortunately, was not what I was expecting. I had hoped for a read that would leave me feeling empowered, a sense of strength pulsating from within but it fell flat, and the actions carried out were unnecessary and brutal. Foul Is Fair was written in such a way that the survival of sexual assault and trauma should be retaliated in actions that were wholly unhealthy and catapults the victim to a level that is on par with the perpetrator. This book was not enjoyable. The way in which sexual assault is handled by everyone close to Jade/Elle is quite frankly repulsive.
The one true thing that galls me the most. The one aspect I could not look past if I tried, is the fact that her parents were told about the assault and they did nothing. NOTHING. I mean as a parent isn’t it your job/responsibility to do what is best for your child whether they ask you not to do something or not. I would want the scum to put behind bars the minute I found out. The parents seem to be an influential aspect (definitely not a positive one) into why she takes this course of action over reporting it – they seem standoffish and there social standing being of more import than the serious situation slapping them about the face.
Just for one minute imagine a young adult reading this book and taking the very wrong decision not to report a serious sexual assault. She was a child and she was seriously let down but those that supposed to care for her.
Revenge as imagined in Foul Is Fair seems to be without consequence. Murder a bunch of people and not be afflicted with the human emotion of guilt or remorse…once again what does this say about the way she has been brought up? Revenge hardly ever benefits anyone. Murder is still murder. It hurts those around you, it maims you psychologically and this book just left bewildered and deeply angry.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
hannah capin wrote her first “novel” when she was 11. it starred a girl detective and a brilliant villain seeking revenge on her enemies in the FBI.
when she isn’t working on her next manuscript, you can find her sailing, singing, or scheming with her friends. she holds degrees from columbia university and the indiana university jacobs school of music, and she lives in tidewater virginia.