Author: CJ Skuse
Published: 4 Feb 2013 by Chicken House
Length: 328 pages
Warnings: sex references, slightly disturbing things involving puppies/dead people
Other info: CJ Skuse has also written Rockoholic, Pretty Bad Things and Rock Addict.
Summary : Camille wants to find the perfect boy, with an athlete's body and a poet's brain. But when she's mocked at a college party, she kows there isn't a boy alive who'll ever measure up. Enter Zoe, her brilliant but strange best friend, who takes biology homework to a whole new level. She can create Camille's dream boy, Frankenstein-style. But can she make him love her?
Review: Camille isn’t the most popular girl in school. not by a long shot. But she wants a boyfriend, and when Zoe comes along, and suggests making one, they go for it. It’s not long before they’re raiding bodies and hooking them up to electrical things. But then things start going a little bit wrong.
I’ve not read anything by C.J. Skuse before, but I have read the original, plus many other takes on, Frankenstein, which have been generally awesome, so I was hoping that this would be one of them. And it definitely was.
The Frankenstein in this version was Zoe, who has more reason to want this to work than you realise at first. I really liked Zoe-she’s very determined, very clever, and a little insane. Loved her completely.
Camille is a very fun character. You feel sorry for her, because she’s the butt monkey of a huge prank at the start, her friends kind of drop her, and such. She’s still optimistic and cheery, partially due to Zoe resurrecting a dog, Pee Wee, for her, and I spent the whole book just wanting it to go right for her and to find the right guy.
The other two major characters are Louis and Damien. Damien, I did not like at all. I find it impossible to like anyone with such immense disrespect towards girls, like he has, even if he does develop further on. Louis, however, I liked. He was very sweet and I feel like I need to give him hugs at many points in the story.
I liked the way the story developed. Zoe and Camille break into all sorts of places, such as funeral parlours, hospitals and restaurants, and it’s all a lot of fun.
The romance in Dead Romantic is very sweet, though not for the reasons you may expect. There’s also some slightly darker moments where you truly are doubting Zoe and her methods, along with Camille.
Camille has a great voice. At first, it was a bit annoying, but it soon grew on me. It’s typically teenager, full of pop culture references and Camille’s own expressions. It definitely made me laugh a lot.
There’s also a bit of Lovecraft in Dead Romantic, I’ve been meaning to read some of his stuff for a long time, but haven’t got round to it. The choice quotes from Reanimator have definitely made me want to read it soon, though.
Apparently, this is going to be a standalone like CJ’s other books. Oh *disappointed, loves most of these characters* Oh well. Still, headcanon time. Which won’t be said, due to spoiler alert. But the ending is a good mix of cliffhanger and tied up, which leaves you thinking and carrying on the story.
Overall: Strength 4 tea to the most fun take on one on my favourite classics.