ARC Book Review: Himself by Jess Kid


ashley | For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been drawn to Ireland. It’s always felt like the most beautiful place on earth, even with its darkness. So I love reading books that take place there, they transport me to a whole other world. I could feel the Irish magic of Himselfby Jess Kidd before I even opened the book. 

The description of this felt like a song to me and things started out strongly. I liked the setting and the concept of a murder mystery in a whimsical little Irish village. It was a typical book in a typical world with an untypical supernatural element woven in. But the quick hold in the beginning quickly weaned off; I felt rather ambivalent about this book until almost the very end. 

I’m not sure what it was, I usually like books that are set in a small town, it gives an opportunity to get to know all the eccentric small town characters. But other than Mrs. Cauley, I’m not sure I found any of the characters all that intriguing. Mahony had an intriguing story, but even he fell sort of flat and frankly, it drove me crazy how he made all the women in the town so crazy. Everyone fell madly in love with him, but not in a way that made him charming. There were also just so many people! I found it a bit overwhelming trying to keep track of everyone and as such, they all kind of blended together. 

About half way through I still wasn’t totally enamored, but here and there were these beautiful moments where the writing was very strong and descriptive, I had to keep reading. That’s really the only thing that pushed me through, that and just my curiosity to know exactly what happened to Mahony’s mother. 

I did really enjoy the ghostly side of this, that layer I thought was far more interesting for the most part. The ending definitely picked up and I felt myself get sucked into things, but at that point it was a bit too late and I was just ready to leave this small town behind me. I think there was a lot of potential here and Kidd is a great writer, I just didn’t feel very haunted by anything or anyone here, living or dead. 


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march 21, 2017

copy provided for honest review by