I’m a total sucker for thrillers that keep me on my toes. The suspense in Final Girls by Riley Sager was done so well! I found myself guessing at what would happen next and each time… I was wrong! It’s one of those thrillers that makes you go, “OH! Why didn’t I see that earlier!” or “I KNEW there was something up with x!”
In this book, Riley Sager takes the trope of the “final girl,” the sole survivor that manages to stagger away from a massacre with serious injuries at the very end of a horror movie, and shows us what happens next.
My Thoughts on Final Girls by Riley Sager
Click here to read the Goodreads synopsis. I personally, think this synopsis gives too much away. So if you like to dive into thrillers pretty blind like I do, just a caution there!
I really needed to read a great thriller this week! This one, overall, did not disappoint!
First things first, I have to say that I LOVE that this book starts off with a major bang; an intense scene from the past. This hooked me immediately! We then jump to the present, and slowly learn what had happened through flashbacks, until the past and the present meet in one final standoff.
I loved the element of the flashbacks because I felt that this really helped add to the suspense. On one hand you just wanted to know what had happened in the past, but on the other you can’t wait to see what happens next during the present! However, sections of each did tend to drag a bit (more on that later).
One thing that I really enjoy as a reader is when authors include foreshadowing. But not just any foreshadowing, the type that I totally don’t pick up on until the very last minute. So many times I literally gasped out loud, groaned, or said “No!” once I realized what the author had been dangling right in front of my face the entire time. There were also a bunch of red herrings that totally threw me off (in a good way, of course!).
Needless to say I really enjoyed the storyline and the writing style!
Beware, the negatives:
After the incredible first two pages, the book slowed way down. For the quarter of the book, I found myself quickly reading through the current day so I could hurry up and read the bits from past. But even then, quite a bit of the past was just boring. About halfway through, I found that my feelings switched; I was more interested to see where the storyline of the present was going vs. the storyline from the past.
There was a little consistency issue when it came to the main characters thoughts about suicide. On one page, she says she never considered suicide, but pages later she lists her top two preferences for suicide “if it ever comes to that.” So clearly she had thought about it enough to make a list.
My Favorite Passages from Final Girls
There’s safety in numbers, yes, but also uncertainty.
In my mind, that hour is a blackboard completely erased. There’s nothing left but dust.
We were, for whatever reason, the lucky ones who survived when no one else had. Pretty girls covered in blood. As such, we were each in turn treated like something rare and exotic. A beautiful bird that spreads its bright wings only once a decade. Or that flower that stinks like rotting meat whenever it decides to bloom.
I start to hyperventilate again, my body wrapped by a series of lung-scraping gasps. The sudden lack of air makes me woozy.
I’m the moth that got careless with the flame. Now I’m engulfed.
It feels as if gravity has failed and everything once secure and settled in my life is now tumbling in midair, suddenly just beyond reach.
The two screams collide until I can’t tell which is in the present and which is in the past.
My Final Thoughts on Final Girls
A bit unoriginal, sure. And I had a few personal irks. But I would still very highly recommend this book to anyone that enjoys slow building stories with action packed endings that you will never see coming.
Snag a copy through Bookshop to help support local indie bookshops:
Thanks for reading!
Have you read a great thriller or horror novel recently? I’d love to hear about it!