This book is pure genius.
Ketchup Clouds Summary
Zoe Collins has a dark and terrible secret that she dares confess to no one. But one day she hears of a criminal on death row who knows all about secrets. And lies. And betrayal.
Desperate to confide in someone, Zoe picks up a pen.
These are the letters that she wrote.
What a fantastic book this is. The concept and the way the story is told is pure genius, and I absolutely loved it. Ketchup Clouds consists of a series of letters that tell Zoe’s heartbreaking story, and the letters are so believable and addictive I couldn’t put it down.
I knew I’d love this book as soon as I opened it to the first page and saw the splodge of red at the top, which Zoe explains is jam. I mean, the first paragraph of Ketchup Clouds reads: “Ignore the blob of red in the top left corner. It’s jam not blood, though I don’t think I need to tell you the difference. It wasn’t your wife’s jam the police found on your shoe.” Great, right?
There are little pictures and illustrations throughout the whole of Ketchup Clouds, which I thought was a brilliant addition to the story, and a clever contrast to the seriousness of the written content of each letter. I love that Zoe’s tone of voice is young, fresh and adolescent, but her story’s themes are deep, meaningful and quite mature. It does mean that it took a little while to get used to, as her voice seemed significantly younger than my own and therefore it was hard to relate to her at first, but I soon overcame that once I got sucked into the plot.
I also found the diversity of the characters really appealing. Each character, from Zoe’s friends and family to her love interests and their families, has such a solid and unique personality. There are just the right amount of characters to allow you to get to know each one, grow attached to them, and understand how they each impact Zoe’s life.
Additionally, I never once got confused, despite the non-linear narrative.
This is the kind of novel I’d love to write. I’d recommend it to everyone. So what are you waiting for? Go buy it!
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