I have seen some brilliant reviews about this book and was really keen to read it. This is always a problem, as rarely does a book match up to the hype - even when the hype is within your own group of reader friends. I loved the premise of the book and thought the full range of really despicable characters was excellent. As a study of developing evil, this was great and the parallel with real life evil was clear to see. It didn't have that thrill for me that would make it a five star read, it was clear what was going on so there were not very many shocks or twists that I hadn't expected. This didn't detract from the story though - so it rates highly as a book worth reading but loses something when compared with really gripping psychological thrillers. For me this was a 3.5 star read, definitely worth it, a really interesting storyline but not necessarily a gripping thriller.