Format: Arc Paperback
Published: 1st Oct 2012
Source: Publisher for Review
Genre: YA Thriller
Buy: Amazon UK I Amazon US I Book Depository
When a mysterious note appears in Charlotte’s mailbox inviting her to join the League of Strays, she’s hopeful it will lead to making friends. What she discovers is a motley crew of loners and an alluring, manipulative ringleader named Kade. Kade convinces the group that they need one another both for friendship and to get back at the classmates and teachers who have betrayed them. But Kade has a bigger agenda. In addition to vandalizing their school and causing fights between other students, Kade’s real intention is a dangerous plot that will threaten lives and force Charlotte to choose between her loyalty to the League and her own conscience.
Before I review this book I just want to point out that there is a lot of drama around this book on goodreads and yes I have read some of it but I haven't let it cloud my judgement on the story, I think it made me more determind to find out for myself.
When I first seen this book I thought it was going to be a vampire novel. I think it was the cover because the description doesn't suggest anything supernatural. So when I started to read up on it I discovered its was a YA thriller I was excited and I am so happy that I really enjoyed it.
League of Strays follows Charlotte, who has moved to a new school a few months ago and doesn't have any friends. So when she receives a mysterious letter she is intrigued and follows the note to a meeting place where she quickly discovers a bunch of other teenagers who are as lonely has her. And all have been bullied at some point. However, where Charlotte just wants to make friends, the ringleader Kade has other to get back at those who have hurt them. But Kade has a dark past that proves to be dangerous and could destroy lives and ruin everything,
For the most part I really enjoyed this book. I found the characters engaging the plot very fast paced and exciting because I never know what kinda of craziness would happen next. Charlotte I personally couldn't relate to, actually I couldn't relate to any of the characters on a personal level because I was never bullied. However, the author manages to convey Charlotte's emotions pretty cleary so I could feel for her and the situations she found herself in. All Charlotte really wants is to make friends and she does in the form of Kade, Richie, Nora and Zoe. These 5 teenagers are all very different but they all have interesting stories of their own. Although, Charlotte instantly finds herself attracted to Kade (not instalove but more like Lust). Kade, well what can I say about Kade, he is an interesting character. You know straight away that he is a creep, not quite right and very very manipulative. But he has the bad boy appeal that can turn a good girls head.
The subject matter to the novel is a hard one to discuss without giving any spoilers. It's about revenge bully, which honestly I have never heard of the term before. But after reading League of Strays I got a fair idea about what it is was. And it such a hard topic to write about without it causing offense. And after reading a small number of reviews on goodreads, people did take offense to the it. HOWEVER, what I noticed is that after a certain scene in the book a lot of people stopped reading and I think that is big NO NO! Yes, I was uncomfortable with the scene but it plays a part in the story development. Maybe the scene could have been set out a bit better I don't know.
League of Strays is a fantastic debut from LB Schulman. It's fast paced, exciting and thrilling, Keeps you guessing and can send shivers down your spine and gets you really thinking. I am looking forward to reading more of the authors work.