Friday 5 August 2022

The Hive by Scarlett Brade BLOG TOUR #TheHive @scarlettbrade @ZaffreBooks @RandomTTours #BookReview


Charlotte Goodwin looks directly at the camera and reveals a chilling truth to the thousands watching her Instagram Live broadcast. She has killed her ex-boyfriend's new partner in cold blood. But she is not finished yet. The viewers must now vote to decide whether he should live or die.

The public display sends shockwaves rippling through the online community and the numbers of viewers skyrockets. But as Lincoln's past is revealed, how will he be judged?

The Hive explores our darkest fears of the relationship between social media and mental health, but, most importantly, the strength of sisterhood against all the odds.

The Hive by Scarlett Brade was published on 21 July 2022 by Zaffre. My thanks to the publisher who sent my copy for review as part of this #RandomThingsTours Blog Tour 

Well, where to begin? I could talk for hours about this book, my review could go on for pages and pages, but it won't. As much as I'd love to sit and debate this book for ever, I will just let you know some of my thoughts and then you read it, and you can decide. 

First and foremost. I don't think I'm the target audience for this novel. I don't relate to the character's way of life, their morals, their behaviours or their age. However, our lead group of characters are women, so am I. They have also endured hardships and tragedy throughout their lives and those problems are as old as the human race; abuse, addiction, violence, so despite their age, and their lifestyle, I certainly can empathise with their issues. 

The story begins with a shocking prologue that grips the reader and will ensure that they carry on reading. Using social media for the basis of the story makes it modern up-to-date and totally refreshing. Our world has changed in terms of reporting. No longer do we have to wait for the evening news bulletin, or the morning newspaper to find out what is happening in the world. Today it is there, in our face, immediately and occasionally, as in the case of The Hive, live from the actual scene. 

Charlotte Goodwin is famous for being famous, she's the ex of a well known boxer and their relationship; it's growth and it's grimy and difficult break down has been talk of The Hive for weeks. The Hive is an Instagram account devoted to celebrity news. Regularly posting gossip and hearsay and the perfect place for Charlotte to carry out her plan. 

Charlotte has murdered her ex boyfriend's new girlfriend and has Linc (he ex) held hostage in a hotel suite. She's asked The Hive's viewers to #VoteLive or to #VoteDie - they will decide Linc's fate. 

Scarlett Brade takes her readers back to the beginning of Charlotte and Linc's relationship and also introduces Charl's three best friends. These are a bunch of mixed-up women who between them, have enough issues to keep the chat show agony aunts going for years. It's really difficult to like any of the women, with the exception of Poppy, but oh my goodness, they are engrossing and compelling. It's like a car crash, you just want to look away, but you just can't help yourself. 

Made up almost entirely of dialogue and nipping between characters, this is a quick and frenzied read at time, with extracts from the comments section on The Hive to ensure that the reader knows exactly what the world is thinking about Charl, and about Linc. 

I can't say that it is great literature, but I can say that it's original and extremely addictive, I read it it just two sittings, totally enthralled and at times, a little bit disgusted by the extraordinary lives of these women and just what they'd do to protect each other. 

The ending is a bit bonkers, it's totally mad but it is also satisfying and I gave a little fist pump in the air when I turned the final page. Obsession, social media, the pull of the celebrity lifestyle and the strength of the female friendship takes centre stage in this novel. Try it and see what you think! 

Scarlett Brade is the daughter of parents who migrated from the Caribbean to England in the early 1970s. 

She was born and educated in London, though as a child she spent her summers in Canada, where she developed her love affair with reading. 

When not writing Scarlett spends most of her time cooking, drinking fine wines, and entertaining family and friends. The Hive is her first psychological thriller novel, and she is currently writing her second.

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