I read Dare Me in a night, and it was amazing. Firstly, this is not a book about cheerleading. Much like her last novel, this is a dark and captivating psychological thriller, made all the more gripping by the fact that the main characters are teenagers.
The contrast between the purity of the cheerleading and the sinister goings-on in all of the character’s lives is what makes this hard to put down. It’s an interesting look at the dynamics of the relationships between women from puberty onwards, and while it is not entirely an all female cast, it might as well be, as the men in the book are merely players in the game, either disposable objects of sexual attraction, or damaged and ruined objects of pity.
The central character of the book is Addy, who seems destined to stand in the shadows of her best friend, until a new cheerleading coach takes a somewhat inappropriate liking to her and causes a rift between the two, all the while drawing Addy into her personal life, which is chaotic and morally questionable. A lot of the plot centres around the covering up of a crime, and there are so many twists and turns that you will find this hard to stop reading. Megan Abbott does a wonderful job of nailing the darkness of teenage girls.
By Kylie Simpson