I received this book from The Next Best Book Club in exchange for an honest review.
“My stalker is smart, just like I would be. He or she finds the shadows. Shows up when I’m wasted or popped too many little blue pills. So I’ll be far enough away from reality to believe they are real…I know this because that is what I would do,” (Goldberg 7).
Depressed, alcoholic, and self-medicating thirty-year-old Lexi Mazur doesn’t have a lot going for her, especially when her boyfriend Steve dumps her. But she manages to find happiness in her reality TV shows, especially Socialites, becoming obsessed with it’s star Magnolia Artois. Lexi follows her on social media and knows she and Magnolia would be friends and that she would be a good addition to the show. And Magnolia posts so often, it isn’t hard to figure out where she’s going to be and to just happen to be in the same spot. It’s how she won over Steve and her other ex Jeremy, manipulating things in her favour is easy for Lexi, stalking even easier. But now Lexi’s feeling watched, or is it just the pills making her paranoid? When notes and threatening phone calls are coming to Lexi’s apartment she wonders who her stalker is, could it be Magnolia afraid of losing the spotlight? Her only friend Pria who Lexi thinks has an unhealthy relationship with her? Lexi will have to use her own stalking skills to find out who her stalker is, but could her stalker be even better than she is?
I really enjoyed Stalker Stalked, though it was hard at the beginning because Lexi truly is an unlikable protagonist. And I like that she’s unlikeable, it’s important to have characters that are unlikeable and different so that different stories can be told. When I started it though I definitely struggled. Lexi is selfish and mean to nearly everyone around her, especially her friend Pria who just wants the best for her. While her traumatic past explains it doesn’t excuse Lexi’s behaviour and I think Goldberg did a fantastic job showing that. She was such a compelling character to follow and I loved her voice so much more than I thought I would!
I was amazed for such a short book it packed quite a punch and felt very complete, it didn’t drag but kept me interested and involved throughout and didn’t feel lacking in the end, though the very last scene wasn’t my favourite it still managed to fit the story as a whole. I also thought the reality TV lens was an interesting obsession of Lexi’s that Goldberg did really well with, especially as an examination of parasocial relationships with celebrities and as an added layer to Lexi’s addiction. It worked well with the stalker angle and I’m glad Goldberg decided to use the themes of obsession and addition to compare the two.
Stalker Stalked is a thrilling and addicting read with protagonist you won’t want to give up on and, ironically, one whose story you won’t want to stop following. Goldberg’s book is unforgettable and I look forward to reading his other work.
Publisher: All Due Respect
Pages: 164 pages (PDF)
Source: The Next Best Book Club (Thanks Lori!)
Genre: Fiction, Mystery, Thriller, Suspense
My Rating: ⛤⛤⛤⛤
“Lexi Mazur is a depressed, alcoholic, pill-popper whose only joy has become her reality TV shows, often fantasizing that the people on TV are a part of her world. After her boyfriend Steve leaves her, she fixates on the show Socialites and its star Magnolia Artois, following every facet of the girl’s life on social media in the hopes of befriending and becoming more like her.
But stalking isn’t new to Lexi. She ultimately won over her ex Steve by following and manipulating every minute detail about him so he’d fall for her. In fact, she landed her other ex-boyfriend Jeremy in the same way. Being a pharma rep, she’s used to manipulation to get doctors to buy her drugs, along with the perk of saving pills for herself.
But what happens when the stalker gets stalked?
Recently, Lexi has felt someone watching her: in her apartment in Queens, at her job. At first, she thinks her mind’s playing tricks, but the watcher is behaving just like she would. And soon they begin leaving threatening clues like she starts to do to Magnolia once her obsession grows more dangerous. Is it one of her exes out for revenge? Her only real friend from childhood who she’s always had an unhealthy rivalry? A detective who may have figured her out? The reality star Magnolia trying to turn the tables? Or even someone she might not know?
Lexi learns the only way to beat her stalker is to use her own stalking prowess to outsmart them at their own game. But has she finally met her match?”