You by Caroline Kepnes

February 5th, 2015 kimbacaffeinate Review 83 Comments

5th Feb
You by Caroline Kepnes
You
by Caroline Kepnes
Series: You #1
Published by: Simon and Schuster
Narrator: Santino Fontana
Length: 11 hrs and 6 mins
Genres: Suspense thriller
Source: Purchase
Purchase: Amazon | Audible
Goodreads
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

When a beautiful, aspiring writer strides into the East Village bookstore where Joe Goldberg works, he does what anyone would do: he Googles the name on her credit card. There is only one Guinevere Beck in New York City. She has a public Facebook account and Tweets incessantly, telling Joe everything he needs to know: she is simply Beck to her friends, she went to Brown University, she lives on Bank Street, and she’ll be at a bar in Brooklyn tonight—the perfect place for a “chance” meeting. As Joe invisibly and obsessively takes control of Beck’s life, he orchestrates a series of events to ensure Beck finds herself in his waiting arms. Moving from stalker to boyfriend, Joe transforms himself into Beck’s perfect man, all while quietly removing the obstacles that stand in their way—even if it means murder. A terrifying exploration of how vulnerable we all are to stalking and manipulation, debut author Caroline Kepnes delivers a razor-sharp novel for our hyper-connected digital age. You is a compulsively readable page-turner that’s being compared to Gone Girl, American Psycho, and Stephen King’s Misery.

You by Caroline Kepnes offers a twisted thriller that will sink its hooks in you. Christy @ Love of Booksdemanded suggested  that I read this. It went on sale and I snagged it. Loupe @ Hot Listens said the narration was out of this world so I grabbed the audio version. They were both right. You was brilliant, twisted and combined with Santino Fontana narration I was completely trapped inside Joe’s mind and I friggin’ loved it.

“You blush. You are Charlotte’s Web and I could love you.”

Joe Goldberg’s works at a bookshop in the East Village when Guinevere Beck enters and makes a purchase. As Joe checks her out they chat for a few minutes and Joe feels a connection. What transpires next exposes our vulnerability in the digital age. Joe manipulates his way into Beck’s life and she unknowingly welcomes him.

“If we were teenagers, I could kiss you. But I’m on a platform behind a counter wearing a name tag and we’re too old to be young.”

Kepnes delivers the tale completely from Joe’s point of view allowing us to ride along as he manipulates and creates. He is the composer and Beck’s life his masterpiece. This is not a romance, yet there IS a romance and it is brilliant. What impressed me the most was the author’s ability to make me like this anti-hero. Joe is so wrong and I should run, but I could not. He made me laugh, terrified me and yet I was drawn to him like a moth to a flame. I was impressed by how cleverly Kepnes exposed his inner workings. The dark humor woven into the tale, especially when Joe finds himself in trouble made me giggle even if it was twisted and wrong. *grins*

If you have ever watched or read Dexter than you know what it is like seeing Joe interact with others. He is a little odd, but does not seem to be a threat, heck he is even shall we say sweet. Kepnes captured this brilliantly. Have I said brilliantly too much? I am at a loss for words. Fans of movies, books and pop culture will love the references Joe makes. All of them take place in the commentary that is constantly running in his mind.

“You are a woman and I am a man and we belong in the dark together.”

The entire time you are reading/listening to this the outside world will slip away and as you begin making a checklist of the stupid, seemly innocent things Beck did. Kepnes will  have you questioning your tweets, and Facebook status. You will expose your own vulnerabilities and the realism makes it all the more suspenseful and chilling.

“You are not easily rescued”

Santino Fontana the narrator brought Joe to life. His narration was superb and notched up the chills. He nailed the dark humor, Joe’s frustration,  and his seductive awkwardness. It added a level of brilliance to the story providing a perfect marriage of voice and story.

You is the type of story that you become caught up in, and yes the premise behind it is a scary one. Perhaps you will walk away a little wiser about social media. Perhaps you will take a second glance at a stranger and wonder…but is that such a bad thing?

“The problem with books is that they end.”

 

About Caroline Kepnes

Caroline Kepnes is the author of You, a psychological thriller that delves into the crackling mind of an obsessive male bookseller. Caroline was born and raised in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. During her sophomore year of high school, she won an honorable mention in Sassy Magazine’s Fabulous Fiction Contest. She continued making stories as an undergrad at Brown University. She is currently at work on Love, a sequel to You. Caroline’s fiction is often partly inspired by her career as an entertainment journalist. Over the years, she has contributed to Tiger Beat, Yahoo, E! Online and Entertainment Weekly. Her favorite things include Mad Men, Prince lyrics, Bret Easton Ellis novels and romantic comedy films set in New York.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. She's a self-professed Whovian, as well as a Supernatural, and Sherlock Holmes junkie, She enjoys sharing books, tips, recipes and hosting the Sunday Post. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat... Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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83 Responses to “You by Caroline Kepnes”

  1. kindlemom1

    Wasn’t this just freaking crazy? Darn Christy and the books she makes me read. 😛

    There is going to be a sequel to this and I can’t wait, it is going to be messed up in the best way possible!

    kindlemom1 recently posted: WoW Pick of the Week
  2. Melliane

    Oh that’s great! SO many things in this book. I’m glad it delivered so many things and that it was that good! It’s the first time I hear about it but I think I need to keep it in mind now. thanks for the review!

    Melliane recently posted: Graceling by Kristin Cashore
  3. Cynthia

    I am so glad you loved this one. I loved it so, so, so much. I read this earlier this year and I think it’s one of the best ones I have read so far. I think I may need to check out the audio version. I have heard rave reviews about that one. I want to hear someone do Joe’s voice because I am sure it would be super creepy.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      The audio version made my top ten for 2014. (yes I post this far out. I listened to this in early December)

  4. Jeann

    What interests me about this book is that it’s told from the stalker’s point of view, which is totally creepy and would really creep me out! I haven’t seen Dexter, not sure if I could stomach it but this one would be weirdly fascinating. Thanks for the review Kimba!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Ooo yeah start with something twisted..you will be hooked. I recommend this or Girl on a Train

  5. Jenny

    I need to read this Kim! It’s been on my list since Christy posted her review, but I haven’t had a chance to get to it yet. Clearly that’s a fail. I love a good anti-hero, one I know is bad news on so many levels but yet someone I can’t help be drawn to. Can’t wait to read!

    Jenny recently posted: Review + Giveaway: In His Keeping
    • kimbacaffeinate

      It is very hard in this day and age to stay off the grid. It was creepy and oh so good

  6. Laurel-Rain Snow

    Some people love it, others hate it…I am on the fence. I started it, and for whatever reason, wasn’t in the mood for it, so I stopped. I am sure I’ll return to it. Thanks for sharing.

    Laurel-Rain Snow recently posted: AUTHOR’S HOME PAGE
    • kimbacaffeinate

      I totally think audio is the way to approach You. Maybe you can try again later.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Ah, fear through reading. It was interested getting inside his mind and seeing how he operated.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Thanks Tammy, and his mind reminds me of Dexter…..enjoy!

  7. Stacy (StacyHgg)

    YOU SOLD ME!
    I just went online to my library and they have the Audiobook for download so YAY! (Although I’m #10 in line, LOL)
    I love when an Author can make me like an anti-hero. I know I’m supposed to cringe, and when I don’t I question my sanity, and morality–but that’s okay 😉
    GREAT REVIEW!

    Stacy (StacyHgg) recently posted: Empathy by Ker Dukey ~ What a crazy DARK ride!
    • kimbacaffeinate

      psst…..I find these creepy, twisted characters so fascinating. You are not alone

    • kimbacaffeinate

      hehe..no but she kept me reminding me..i cracked in December and the audio was fantastic.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      LOL these are from December..I went crazy on the audio..lol

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Suspense is good, and getting inside a crazy guy’s head is cool.

  8. Lexxie

    Oh my goodness, Kim, I think this is definitely a story I need to either read or listen to as well! It sounds both chilling and fun, it’s the kind of thing that could definitely happen in this day and age. Having someone stalk her sounds scary, but it seems like she doesn’t even realize this at all, so it makes the readers kind of complicit with Joe.
    Great review!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Joe is complicated and I loved getting inside his twisted little head

  9. Reanna

    I snagged the Kindle edition back in November, and when I finally started it, I remembered you said the audio version was amazing. You were right. I think I needed to hear part of the audio so I had Joe’s voice. I couldn’t nail it down before that LOL! But yes, this book is a serious mind *@$%!

    Now I’m dying for the sequel, and I hope they use the same narrator 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      It has a different feel and I loved how creeptastic it was 🙂

  10. Sarah

    HOLY. CRAP. This might be the second book this year that I read that isn’t romance! Wow, it really does sounds spectacular. Christy recommended I read it awhile ago, and it’s on the TBR, but I really haven’t given it much thought since her review until now.

    Sarah recently posted: Cat Thursday #2 | Fat Felines
    • kimbacaffeinate

      Forget details? What? I can quote from audios I listen to. Do you have trouble remembering what you listened to? I know some folks have difficulty and need to read to process. I think though, that the more you listen the better you become. I’ve listened to over 50 audios in the past 14 months and I think that helps.

  11. Ramona

    Oh my god, I would’ve totally missed this if you hadn’t posted this – and what a pity that would’ve been, right? Amazing review, this is going on my to-read shelf, marked “urgent”. Thanks for sharing, Kimba, this is great!

    Ramona recently posted: Dreamland, By Sarah Dessen
    • kimbacaffeinate

      Yes, enjoy I look forward to seeing what you think of Joe 🙂

  12. Olivia

    Contrary to you, I haven’t really been seeing many positive reviews for this one. It does sound dark and suspenseful but I am still not sure. I have seen it compared to Gone Girl a lot but seeing as I haven’t read that yet I don’t know 🙁

    Olivia recently posted: City Center (Review & Giveaway!)
    • kimbacaffeinate

      It is dark, twisted and different. It has vibes similar to Gone Girl, but is unique.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Folks who read it seem to like it just as much..regardless of the format I hope you love it Shannon