Killer Ruby Simon is a character that remains with you long after you’ve finished reading the pages of Sascha Rothchild’s gripping debut novel, ‘Blood Sugar’. From the very first murder on page two, by the then five year old Ruby, you just need to know what happens next.
Yet, imagine being accused of four murders, when you’ve only committed three? This is the audacious problem the readers face, along with a grown up Ruby, in the novel. Which murder finally caught her out?
Despite Ruby’s killer instincts, Rothchild has created a believable, often likeable character in the tense storyline. Ruby forms loyal relationships throughout the book, from her early teen years through to graduating into her career. Not usually the makeup of your average serial killer, who’s often portrayed on the screens as male and terrifying. Far more rewarding are the insights into a character we can see ourselves in every now and then. The difference is that Ruby executes her survival skills, with precision.
The named chapters are a good touch, hinting at the content, without revealing too much; the writing cleverly keeps you on the story contained within the chapter, and aware of the story as a whole. The headings focus the purpose of the chapter and every word matters in this novel, just as in a script.
Known more for her executive production of TV shows including ‘GLOW’, ‘The Carrie Diaries’ and ‘The Bold Type’, Rothchild’s careful control over her writing – rather like Ruby’s control over her beloved purple pens – slowly drips the story onto the page for the reader, as though they were episodes of a binge-worthy TV series.
Florida’s Miami features as a little-known-about and larger-than-life character, from childhood beach trips, to teenage exploration of the club scene, through to Ruby’s professional adult life, and at times I found myself researching a future trip to the area.
‘Blood Sugar’ is an electrifyingly addictive page-turning psychological thriller, out 2nd March in paperback with Trapeze/Orion Books. I can’t wait to read more from the creative mind of Sascha Rothchild.
Published by: Trapeze Release date: 2nd March 2023 Buy ‘Blood Sugar’ now