Girl In Snow
Author: Danya Kukafka
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre/Themes: Psychological Thriller, Mystery
Release Date: August 1st 2017
Page Count: 368
Format: ARC via Publisher
*Disclaimer: An ARC of Girl In Snow by Danya Kukafka was provided to me by Simon & Schuster Canada in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my review in any way.
Initial Post-Reading Thoughts
There was definitely a lot going on in this one. We have three different character perspectives. On top of this, the writing changed from first person narrative to third person narrative and then (very briefly) to second person narrative. It was a strange way to write a novel which made it a strange way to read a novel. However, I think it almost kind of worked within this psychological thriller.
When a beloved high schooler named Lucinda Hayes is found murdered, no one in her sleepy Colorado suburb is untouched—not the boy who loved her too much; not the girl who wanted her perfect life; not the officer assigned to investigate her murder. In the aftermath of the tragedy, these three indelible characters—Cameron, Jade, and Russ—must each confront their darkest secrets in an effort to find solace, the truth, or both.
What I Liked
Dark & Creepy. For those of you who know me well, you know that anything dark and creepy instantly attracts me to it. I know, it sounds a little messed up, but it’s true. I just loves stories that are a little dark and strange in nature and that is exactly what Girl In Snow was. Psychological thrillers can start to feel really similar to one another and it takes a lot for one to stand out. The synopsis of Girl In Snow sounds pretty generic, a girl named Lucinda is found dead and no one knows who did it. Doesn’t really stand out right? Add in a kid who used to stalk the girl while she was still alive, her ex-best friend who used to be in love with the now dead girl’s ex-boyfriend and a cop that has a whole slew of his own demons. But wait, it gets even better!
The Connections. The story is told in three different characters perspectives, the three characters mentioned above. What was really interesting about this novel was the way that all three of these characters started to intertwine and connect with one another. Even the minor side-characters in each perspective started to connect which was really interesting. Sure, they’re all connected to Lucinda, but they are connected in more ways that just that which I found to be really intriguing.
The Writing Style? I add a question mark at the end of this statement because I’m unsure if I liked or didn’t like the writing style. I think it may be a little bit of both. The writing was artistically very well done. It was almost like reading a poem. I looked into this a little more and found out that Girl In Snow is written in crystalline prose which is something that I had never heard of before. Basically, it means that the story was told using descriptive words without being wordy. The sentences seem simple, yet a rich and complex which really helped to paint the picture of this story. The writing also changed back and forth between first person narrative and third person narrative. There was also a brief moment where the story was told using second person narrative. While this did bother me a little, it almost kind of worked with this particular story.
What I Didn’t Like
The Writing Style? While I did like the writing style for the above mentioned reasons, it was also a little off-putting. It was hard to get used to jumping back and forth and I’m not really sure what purpose it served. Why did one character tell their story in first person while the other was third person? There were also moments where the dialogue used no punctuation, whereas there were other moments in the story that did. There was just a lot of little things like that that I noticed and that I’m not really sure how I feel about.
The Alternative Focus. Instead of this story mainly focusing on figuring out who killed Lucinda, it was almost like more of a character study on our three main characters and their different perspectives. We learn more about their lives and how they all connect and come together than we do about why Lucinda was murdered. We end up learning more about Cameron, Jade and Russ. I don’t think I necessarily didn’t like this aspect, it was just a little strange.
Overall, I enjoyed reading Girl In Snow as it was a unique take on a very common psychological thriller plot. It was extremely fast paced and a very intriguing read. It was definitely very dark and a little strange, but I think that’s part of what makes it stand-out from the rest.
About The Author
Danya Kukafka is a graduate of New York University’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. She currently works as an assistant editor at Riverhead books. Girl in Snow is her first novel.