Killing Caroline by Christina Dotson

CAROLINE
Killing Caroline by Christina Dotson
Publisher: Etopia Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (304 pages)
Age Recommendation: 16+
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Orchid

Nothing can come between two sisters. Except murder…

Althea James is the girl everyone loves to ignore. Even her parents act like she doesn’t exist, especially after her perfect sister, Caroline, arrives home from college for summer break. But the sibling rivalry Althea shares with Caroline goes much deeper than competing for their parents’ affection. Caroline represents everything Althea isn’t and never will be. Until one tragic night that threatens to change her life forever.

Suddenly, Althea is forced into the blinding spotlight of fame, but for all the wrong reasons. Her sister is dead, her boyfriend is in jail, and her parents have reported her missing. Now, caught in the middle of the media storm, Althea is the girl no one can stop talking about. But is her newfound fame worth the secret she so desperately wants to keep?

Althea is the younger sister. The one who is different. Her parents want her to be more like her older sister, Caroline. Her peers at school tease her to the point of retaliation, causing her to be suspended. Her life goes further downhill when sister Caroline comes home from college and resumes her goal of making Althea’s life unbearable.

The only bright spot in her life is her boyfriend Jacob who sees a beauty in Althea that no one else does – not even Althea. The return of Caroline and the arrival of Jacob’s brother Davis sets her life spinning. Unable to please anyone and frustrated by her parents believing Caroline’s lies, the final straw comes when her sister taunts her about why Jacob is dating Althea. She snaps and hits out at Caroline who falls to the floor – dead.

Althea is a strong character, despite her conviction she’s not worth anything. Her problems are similar to those of most teenagers but enhanced by her own dark nature. Davis has a similar type of personality although he tends to come across as a bit psychopathic. All the main characters are well defined and the author had me wondering how Althea would cover her
part in her sister’s murder.

At this point I found the story became confusing. However, that could be due to the fact I’m not a teenager. I’m sure that age group would read this with a different outlook on the story than I did. Despite this, I believe Althea’s character was an accurate portrayal of teenage angst and Ms Dotson has told the story with definite insight into teenage life.

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