The Snakes - Sadie Jones

Dan and Bea are in a rut. They want to get away and travel for a while so it makes perfect sense to stop off at their brother's hotel in France on the way to travel across Europe. When they arrive they can see that not only is the hotel a dump but something seems to be off about Bea's brother, Alex. Not long after their arrival Bea and Alex's parents arrive unannounced for a visit and things start to unravel for Bea. Family secrets long hidden start to emerge and trauma beings to rear it's ugly head for everyone.

Firstly I want to thank The Tandem Collective for giving me the opportunity to be a part of the read-along along with some other wonderful book reviewers. Their continued engagement and support for the Bookstagram community is incredible. The Snakes read-along officially ran from 20th February to the 24th February and I enjoyed the concept thoroughly!

From the start of this novel there was a sense of unease surrounding every single character. Bea was clearly unhappy with the way Dan was acting, Dan was angry at the world for not being able to succeed in it and Alex has this underlying anxiety about something not yet revealed to the reader. I initially questioned why Alex was so different to Bea, she was level-headed and accepting but Alex was so chaotic from start to end that it was difficult the gauge who he was as a character. The parents (Liv and Griff) are straight up weird, they don't seem to have any handle on how to treat their children and don't make them aware of things that threaten their safety.

Along with Alex the story is pretty chaotic as well, at one point I wasn't actually sure what story was being told. Bea and Dan progress through a series of events that eventually lead a disappointing and deflated ending. The action in-between did keep me on the edge and I was desperate to find out the family secrets (I'll give you fair warning, it is seriously depraved) but I didn't feel that I gained anything from the story itself.

Overall it was interesting to see into the mechanics of such a disjointed family but the actual climax of the story didn't really have anything to do with that and that was disappointing. Jones worked up such a strong backstory that it was odd to not have it play a key role in the ending of the story. I'd have been happier to see the story end differently but the key parts of the story as single ideas are great, just not joined together in this way.

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