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The Prank by LV Matthews @LV_matthews @welbeckpublish #ThePrank #TheClqrt #DebutFiction #BookReview #BookBlog #MarchPublications #LVMatthews

Welbeck Publishing 18th March 2021

Book Description

It’s All Fun and Games Until Someone Gets Hurt

El, a young woman still grieving from the death of her father, follows a stranger home one night. There she chances on a missing piece of the puzzle over his unexplained death.

This accidental encounter sets in motion an obsession for revenge asking how far would you go to right the wrongs of a long-forgotten past.

The Prank examines the fallout from a single moment in a reality TV programme that has devastating and long-term consequences.

What lengths would you go to in order to avenge the cruel and humiliating death of your father? Focused around a three-dimensional character who is set on taking an eye-for an eye, The Prank is perfect for fans of Gone Girl, You and The Woman at the Window.

My Thoughts

A strong debut novel that proved to be a gripping read which I genuinely struggled to put down. As such it was a quick read enjoyed over a weekend. Those prank shows, we love them right? But there is such a thin line between funny and humiliating and it can easily slip into cruel. For Jim Valente head of production company, Cyclops, the bar keeps getting higher as the demand for laughs and viewing figures drives the jokes further. For El, her father was a victim of a prank and now he is dead she blames Jim and is out for revenge.

What follows is a compelling read, intricately written with a complete and authentic plot. Utilising the internet El secures the help of ‘Horsehead’ who for a small fee agrees to assist her with a fake id and info gleaned illicitly. Perhaps not unexpectedly things spiral and not necessarily in the direction El expects as more information emerges, by which time she is in too deep. Horsehead was an intriguing character and a stark reminder that people we meet on line may not necessarily be who they say they are…

This was an entertaing and very readable novel. El is determined for revenge but Jim is a powerful, handsome CEO who frankly made my skin crawl! Controlling, mysogonistic and indifferent to the suffering of others he was a fantastic character. Charasmatic as a CEO and insistent on loyalty, it is unclear to El who can and can’t be trusted as she seeks to uncover more about the long running TV show known as Pranksters, have others been damaged by these so called jokes.

Underneath the glamour of TV, things are gritty and dirty and this twisty debut has it all, exploring what constitutes entertainment and the price of this, El has to consider whether everyone can be bought. With themes of mental illness and suicide, loss and death this book very much feels like it tackles the underbelly of the wealth and success of the media world, a world that prioritises entertainment over everything, but at what cost?

About the Author

L.V. Matthews was born in rural Essex. Now residing in Hampshire, she lives with her family where she is setting up a writers retreat business. Before pursuing a career in writing, she worked both in domestic and international sales for major UK publishing houses.

The Prank is Matthews’ debut novel.

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