Cover Image: The Revenge Game

The Revenge Game

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

The Revenge Game is one of those books that immediately pulls you in. It was fast paced, YA read, with thriller elements thrown in.

The FMC, Alyson was likeable enough. The story, overall, was well written and kept my attention -- making me fly through each page.

The ending, however, is where I was extremely disappointed. It didn't feel well planned out? Or maybe just not enough thrill, after all this build up.

I did enjoy the book and would recommend it. But I also hope to read an alternative ending someday!

Thank you NetGalley and Random House for this ARC!

Was this review helpful?

This book was pretty good. I only had one small complaint, the ending was a bit obvious. But as someone stated before maybe all younger person might not have come to the conclusion as fast as an adult, so seen as how it's a YA book I wouldn't really knock it for that. The writing was great and the pace kept me reading straight for hours. I would definitely recommend this to a YA, and some adults might enjoy it. Thank you to netgalley and the publisher for this ARC in exchange for an honest review

Was this review helpful?

Thank you to NetGalley and Entangled Publishing for this book.

What to say. Here goes:
The book is set as higj school level, but with so much sex it should be more of a college leve book, In my opinion. That being said I think the book should not have made light hearted the issue of nonconsensual sex (rape).

It seems like whole cast of characters is just thinking about, trying to or performing sequel acts. The boys are obsessed, the girls are talking about it continuously and it just doesn't seem realistic to me. Maybe at age 62 I am out of the loop, but I hope this isn't what is going on today.

I would not want my high-school Grandchildren behaving this way or reading this book. Maybe I'm a prude.

Not for me. Can nor recommend.

Three stars.

Was this review helpful?

Revenge Is Best Served From A Queen’s Cup 👑
Okay, I really enjoyed this one.
If you liked A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder series, or The Cheerleaders, I’d think you’d like this one, too.
Set in the Adirondack Mountains at a prestigious preparatory school, it’s equal parts mystery, romance, revenge, and women’s liberation.
Alyson is desperate for a romance of her own, and when she’s finally caught the eye of senior lacrosse star, Brenton Riggs Jr., she’ll do anything not to mess it up. But, when a game the guys at school are playing called the King’s Cup comes to light she’s ringleader at the girl’s retribution, the Queens Cup. Knowing Rigg’s can’t find out her involvement or he’ll never trust her again, she’s playing two sides until it becomes crystal clear where the crown lies.
Thanks so much to @Netgalley for this early copy.
Be sure to grab this one out November 7th!

Was this review helpful?

I really enjoyed this story was amazing and relatable and was such a great read.I loved the story, the world building and meeting the different characters. I felt completely immersed in the story and couldn't stop reading it.

Was this review helpful?

The Revenge Game by Jordyn Taylor is described as wickedly funny. It is set in a newly coed boarding school in the Adirondacks. Brenton Riggs is the stereotypical hero, tall, handsome, star lacrosse player. Alison Benowitz is a romance novel loving smart girl. Riggs asks her out, and she is thrilled.

The beginning of each chapter is a news report about Riggs' disappearance after prom. The book then goes back to the start of the school year and forward as the story unfolds.

Several of her friends in the school learn about the "Kings Club" that is a competition for which boy earns the most points for sexual activities with the girls. In disgust, they create "Queens Club" to figure out how best to publicly humiliate the boys involved. To say the least, they are creative.

I laughed, and sympathized with the queens as they dealt with their embarrassment. This book is feminist, and includes a lesbian couple. There is no explicit sex, but various acts are stated as part of the Kings Club tally.

I received a free copy of this book and am leaving this review voluntarily.

Was this review helpful?

3.5 ⭐️

Alyson is a hopeless romantic who attends a newly coed boarding school. The story flips back and forth between two timelines: recounting Alyson’s courtship with the handsome, athletic, and popular “Riggs” and the news coverage of his mystery disappearance on prom night.

This book is a true YA - there’s some physical intimacy and sex discussed but nothing graphic. No graphic on page violence or anything either. It has a nice feminist vibe to it. I don’t think I’m the target demographic for this book (being a 40-something woman) so take my lower rating with a grain of salt. Fantastic cover though - it was a huge reason I requested an ARC of this from NetGalley (thanks NetGalley, Penguin Random House and Jordyn Taylor!)






The outcome was predictable. We knew Riggs was a POS and we knew he was dead and we knew Alyson had something to do with it. But again, if you’re a younger teen girl, maybe you haven’t come across this trope yet (in which case I hope you’re not reading spoilers before reading the book!).

I also really disliked that Alyson and Jess’s relationship turned romantic at the end. I was really loving how the author validated an intimate physical platonic relationship between best friends and there was good queer representation in the book with side characters that it didn’t feel necessary and sort of implied that if you have that kind of relationship with a friend of the same gender, you must be gay/bi.

Overall, I’d recommend this for the 14-17 crowd but it’s not a YA book for adults.

Was this review helpful?

The Revenge Game had its moments of intrigue and suspense, particularly within the confines of a boarding school setting. However, the storyline can feel somewhat formulaic, and the character development could have been more robust. It's an enjoyable enough YA thriller, but it doesn't quite stand out in a crowded genre.

Was this review helpful?

I read two chapters and then decided to pass on The Revenge Game. I did not like how boy and love infatuated Alyson was and despite how interesting the summary was (especially the competition to get back at the boys), I just could not read any further if Alyson was going to be lovestruck the whole story. If her infatuations had been dialed back I would have read further. Thank you for giving me the chance to read this.

Was this review helpful?

I wanted so badly for this book to live up to its potential. It came so close. I loved the feminist angles. I loved the concept. I just felt like it wasn't quite there despite its best efforts. It didn't leave me dying to find out what happened next because it just seemed like it would be pretty clear all throughout. If you want one that really keeps you guessing, that's more Ace of Spades or Thieves' Gambit. This was a perfectly enjoyable read, but it didn't blow me away and I so badly wanted it to.

Was this review helpful?

I never expect to be blown away by YA thrillers/mysteries, and this book was no different. I had a hard time cheering for Alyson as she seemed a little TOO naive, even for a teenager. I wish that she had been given more confidence as a character. As far as suspense goes, most people with half a brain could figure out the twist in the first several chapters. However, what bothered me the most about the book was how much talk of sex there was between TEENS. I get it. Teens have sex. But the amount shown here would have been more appropriate for college aged women. I would not recommend this to young teenagers.

Thank you NetGalley for providing me with this digital ARC!

Was this review helpful?

The book was okay. I didn’t hate it or love it, but had a hard time staying interested in the book. It is a fairly typical YA novel. It was a little dramatic of an ending, not realistic, but also added to the excitement. If you’re looking to be transported to a teen movie drama read, this book is for you!

Was this review helpful?

The Revenge Game is a very good novel. The subject matter isn’t pleasant, though, yet it is timely. The story is about how the privileged feel entitled to do whatever they want to do. In the book, male high school students at Sullivan-Stewart, a coed private school, play a game to earn points for sexual acts with targeted female classmates to win the King’s Cup. It would be wonderful if such games were fictional; however, we live in a world where this kind of behavior is seen on campuses and among wealthy, powerful men.
The characters are believable. The boys know how to pretend to have romantic feelings for their victims, who are gradually more controlled and swayed into doing increasingly sexual acts. The author writes fairly graphically about their encounters. I can understand why. The effect drives home how horrible the boy’s’ actions are. The saving grace is that Alyson, the main character, and her friends are able to get even with their own game, the Queens’ Cup.
The book starts with the report of the disappearance and possible death of Benton Riggs, a star athlete and the romantic interest of Alyson, and with interviews of his family and friends. What holds one’s attention is the alternating between flashbacks that chronicle what lead up to that moment and the police and media reports.
I really like this book. I think, though, that a warning should be given in a preface that there is sexual content that might make some readers uncomfortable. I would, however, encourage them to read the novel because it is well written and worth reading.

Was this review helpful?

Thank you to NetGalley and Random House Children's for providing me with a copy of this book to read and give my honest review. The opinions expressed here are my own.
Thriller, mystery, wicked comedy, let me at it! I was excited to start this one and see where it went. A girl who wants romance and then meets the guy of her dreams. It all seemed so perfect, until it wasn't.
What I liked:
I really like the cover of this book. Once you start reading, the symbolism of it definitely pans out. Plus it gives me a bit of an 80s vibe (though there is nothing 80s about the book at all).
The news reports and interviews interspersed with the flashbacks that lead up to the tragedy. I think the former did a great job building up the mystery and kept you wondering just what would happen.
I enjoyed the feminist theme for the most part. The concept of reclaiming their girl power was also very enticing. I love to see a book where the female characters aren't afraid to stand up for what they believe. And to believe in themselves. This book definitely had that vibe going.
The MMC, no, I didn't love him but I did see right through him from the beginning and that made me like him more than any of the other characters in the book.
The author's potential is there. I think her writing could use a bit more fine tuning but overall I can see future books will be fun to read.

What I didn't like.
Alyson, ugh. She was just so wishy washy for me. And super naive. I just don't find that to be the case with teens her age. I wanted to love her and cheer her on, hope for the best because I love romance. But she spent the whole book worrying about whether or not she was coming off too strong, or not strong enough, or looking like a nerd, or anything else than seeing what was right in front of her. I pinned what would happen from the very start. It never sat right for me and I just could not see how she didn't see it. It made me mad for her ad at her! And I hated how she justified how it was ok that she didn't participate in the revenge even though she was the one who started it.
The revenge. Like, I get it. The boys are doing harm so you want to get back at them. But is this truly the message we want to send to our teens? It's ok to seek revenge because and eye for an eye and all that? No, I would not want my child thinking it was ok. And also, without spoiling too much, the mystery that gets revealed. The complacency of the teacher that is involved, and the fact that the girls involved just move on like it was not a big deal. They will carry that secret for the rest of their lives and, despite how terrible the MMC is, how can you say anyone deserves that?
The mystery/thriller angle was never really there for me. Because I figured it out right from the start. It was too predictable. And there were no twist and turns, no cliffhangers to really drive the story forward.
The sex ideas. For the most part I find this to be an important conversation for teens as we all know they are introduced to such themes very early on these days. But how they were presented in the book were very raw. It was like zero to 60 in three seconds with no build up, no nothing. And for YA, it was more graphic than I thought it would be.
The ending. WHAT EVEN WAS THAT? Like, men suck, I'm done, let's date? It just felt forced. There was nothing organic about it at all. I feel like the author wasn't sure how to end the book, so she just threw it in. Had there been some build up to it during the book, I would have felt much better about it.

This was a quick read but mostly because I just wanted to get to the end. I found much of the book boring and felt I had to push myself to truly move on and get to the end. Unfortunately, not really to my liking but I can see where teens may enjoy the story.

Was this review helpful?

First of all, this book takes place in a town where I’m from!!! Sooooo, that was pretty amazing.

The book was a fast paced YA thriller, I read this in one day. So many sensitive topics were touched on in this book and the author did an amazing job with them. Just to mention a few: LGBTQ, sexual harassment, sexual consent, feminism.

This book kept me interested and turning the pages as quickly as I could. I was highly impressed with this read.

Thank you for the opportunity to read this.

Was this review helpful?

Alyson, the high school junior, protagonist of this book, is a hopeful romantic. She even wants to write romance novels someday after attending a prestigious college with a first rate literature and writing department.

Her problem? She comes across to the first boy she’s interested in as desperate and, after she overhears him talking about her not in a good way, she determines to be more cautious as she moves on from this embarrassment.

But her resolution doesn’t last long. The first day of the new school year, she finds herself attracted to a senior lacrosse superstar. To her astonishment, her teacher pairs her with him for a class project.

Before she knows it, she finds herself falling for him as they seem to hit it off immediately. He’s kind and sexy and nothing like she thought he might be as the big man on campus. They seem to have a lot in common even though she is a library nerd and he’s a sports star.

At a camping trip with other students, one of Alyson’s friends overhears a conversation with some of the boys. It seems they have a contest going called the King’s Cup. Points are awarded to the young men for various acts related to the opposite sex.

Upon learning of this, the girls set up a Queen’s Cup for dumping boys publicly because of this point system.

Alyson is sure her lacrosse player, Riggs, isn’t part of the King’s Cup. He even tells her he thinks it’s a stupid game.

She helps her friends with their plans for the Queen’s Cup and is pretty much the ringleader of the quest to expose the boys in the King’s Cup to ridicule. But she is relentless in her belief in Riggs. She feels sorry for the other girls that they can’t find a true and loyal boyfriend.

As the book progresses, the book moves from flashbacks of Alyson and Riggs during the school year to various news reports of Riggs being missing after the prom in May.

The way the author moves the story from time to time is seamless and intriguing. We as the readers know something bad may have happened to Riggs and the story keeps us turning pages to see what occurred to cause his disappearance.

Alyson is likable and funny. She’s a well-rounded character with a few blind spots but, she’s a teenager, so that’s expected. I enjoyed her and her personality. I liked she had a good family relationship and loyal friendships.

The last chapter seemed a bit off for the character to me but that’s really my only issue with the story. I didn’t think it rang true for the character we’d learned about in the rest of the story.

An enjoyable, intriguing read with a unique presentation. And it ticked a lot of boxes for our times, including feminism, family dynamics, date rape, and empowerment over misogyny in a boarding school environment.

Thank you to Random House Children’s Books/Delacorte Press and NetGalley for this ARC.

Was this review helpful?

Thank you to Netgalley and Penguin Random House for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This novel has heavy feminist themes and discusses heavy topics surrounding sexual assault and rape. Trigger warnings should be included for sensitivity.

The mystery of Brenton held my attention throughout the story, however I found myself quite often bored and in a massive reading slump attempting to finish this novel. It was lacking excitement and I do believe that is due to the writing style of the author.

I found most scenes felt more like info dumping that didn’t drive the dialogue or plot forward. Some of the information given was unnecessary and at times hard to follow.

For a YA book it was not my favorite and wouldn’t necessarily recommend to anyone within this age bracket.

Was this review helpful?

I Voluntarily read and reviewed an Advanced copy of this book. All Thoughts and opinions are my own. . A fun, quick read that had you guessing and ultimately a horrifying look at men and toxic culture. This would make a good tv show.

Was this review helpful?

2-1/2 Stars, rounded up to 3

The Revenge Game has everything that should have made it an awesome choice for me . . . it’s billed as a YA mystery/thriller, wickedly comic, with a feminist theme. However, somewhere along the line it didn’t deliver.

One of the things I love most about YA books is that they hook you right from the off. TRG never really did it for me. It was enjoyable enough, and an easy read, but I found that could put it down and not feel a rush to pick it back up again.

As far as the mystery/thriller angle . . . well I’ll give you the mystery part (although it was predictable) but it isn’t a thriller IMO. At least not like any of the thrillers I normally read. There is a conflict that served to drive the plot to be sure, but there isn’t a number of twists or any cliff hangers between chapters. Additionally, I didn’t feel any escalating tension. Also, I must have missed the “wickedly comic” bits I guess?

What I really enjoyed was the feminist themes, the spotlight on toxic masculinity, and the honest conversations about sex and their bodies.

The Revenge Game was perfectly fine book; a weekend diversion. I liked it enough that I’d give the author another read, but I finished the book feeling like it could have been so much more than it was.

Thank you to NetGalley for the digital ARC.

*Trigger warnings for sexual assault/rape

Was this review helpful?

I seriously loved this book! It was smart, funny, sad, real, and incredibly engaging! It was such a genius and revolutionary story with amazing characters that made it all come alive. It was so smart and made me think of the countless girls and women that get assaulted and caught up in men’s/boy’s games, me included. It’s honestly sad that we’ve come so far in feminism but we still have SO FAR to go! Kudos to this phenomenal author for bringing this to the forefront!

Was this review helpful?