Author: M. A. Bennett
Publisher: Hot Key Books
Source: Bought Myself
Rating: 4/5 stars
Nine students. Three bloodsports. One deadly weekend.
It is the autumn term and Greer MacDonald is struggling to settle into the sixth form at the exclusive St. Aidan the Great boarding school, known to its privileged pupils as S.T.A.G.S. Just when she despairs of making friends Greer receives a mysterious invitation with three words embossed upon on it: huntin' shootin' fishin'. When Greer learns that the invitation is to spend the half term weekend at the country manor of Henry de Warlencourt, the most popular and wealthy boy at S.T.A.G.S., she is as surprised as she is flattered.
But when Greer joins the other chosen few at the ancient and sprawling Longcross Hall, she realises that Henry's parents are not at home; the only adults present are a cohort of eerily compliant servants. The students are at the mercy of their capricious host, and, over the next three days, as the three bloodsports - hunting, shooting and fishing - become increasingly dark and twisted, Greer comes to the horrifying realisation that those being hunted are not wild game, but the very misfits Henry has brought with him from school...
I had heard a lot about Stags as last year it was doing the rounds at YALC last year which made me want to pick it up. When I did pick it, I was gripped from the first page finishing the book in a couple of hours. Stags is a truly fast-paced, thrilling YA read that everyone should read.
Stags take on middle-class ideas and class in general which was something that I really did love in the book and I think that it was handled really well. It also worked really well in the story itself especially as it developed.
I also really enjoyed the dynamic between the main characters especially as this developed over the course of the story. There were obviously characters that you were made to dislike so this is understandable.
The main draw to STAGS is the plot which kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the book. I really wanted to find out what happened and the end of the book was definitely surprising and I didn't expect it. This leads me to really want to read the sequel and I can't wait for it to come out!
Stags is a truly unique, fast-paced read and I cannot wait for the next book in the series.
Have you read S.T.A.G.S.? If so what did you think of it? Leave me know in the comments below.