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Ketchup Clouds [Paperback]

Annabel Pitcher
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (132 customer reviews)
RRP: 6.99
Price: 6.36 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

1 July 2013

Fifteen-year-old Zoe has a secret - a dark and terrible secret that she can't confess to anyone she knows. But then one day she hears of a criminal, Stuart Harris, locked up on death row in Texas. Like Zoe, Stuart is no stranger to secrets. Or lies. Or murder.

Full of heartache yet humour, Zoe tells her story in the only way she can - in letters to the man in prison in America. Armed with a pen, Zoe takes a deep breath, eats a jam sandwich, and begins her tale of love and betrayal.


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Ketchup Clouds + My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece + Every Day
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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Indigo (1 July 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1780620314
  • ISBN-13: 978-1780620312
  • Product Dimensions: 19.2 x 12.8 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (132 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,279 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Annabel Pitcher studied English at Oxford and has since worked as a script writer and an English teacher. She lives in Yorkshire with her husband. MY SISTER LIVES ON THE MANTELPIECE was her first novel. She is a full-time writer.

Product Description

Review

In Ketchup Clouds Annabel Pitcher perfectly captures a teenage voice harbouring a guilty and devastating secret as Zoe writes letters to a death row prisoner and slowly reveals the sequence of events that led up to the terrible act she believes she has committed. The letters offer an honest, moving and at times humourous insight into Zoe's life, including her family, first love and friendships, ensuring this book will have wide appeal. (Vanessa Lewis, The Book Nook THE BOOKSELLER 2012-08-24)

Award-winning author Annabel Pitcher's new teen novel is a taut and dramatic adventure with a deep yearning at its heart. Ketchup Clouds vividly captures the terrifying roller coaster of emotion that envelopes Zoe when she gets caught in a tragic love triangle between two brothers. Zoe's heart races for the mysterious Aaron but, despite his seeming keenness, he already has a girlfiend. And then there is younger brother Max, unattached and very keen on Zoe. How can Zoe manage her own feelings without hurting the boys especially when she's also coping with puzzling dramas at home? (Julia Eccleshare LOVEREADING)

A wonderful, romantic and sad story told through a series of letters written by a fifteen-year-old girl to a man on death row. It's heartstoppingly gorgeous and we'd recommend it to anyone. (Jill Murphy The Book Bag)

An endearing love story, a painful account of guilt and loss, and a chilling show of the consequences of our actions this book is a worthwhile and thought provoking read. (Jenny Duffy LOVEREADING)

Ketchup Clouds was a wonderful insight into a guilty heart. The book was fantastic and the writing was flawless, what more could you ask? (Delilah Acworth LOVEREADING)

Wow. Ketchup Clouds is without question one of the best books I have ever read. This is one of those books that you start to read, and three hours later look up from and realize the whole world looks different (Harriet Cunningham LOVEREADING)

This is a suspenseful mystery and a moving tale of first love, handled with humour. (Nicolette Jones THE SUNDAY TIMES 2012-12-02)

Any teenager doing an anxious post-mortem on a Christmas party can take comfort from Ketchup Clouds by Annabel Pitcher, an honest portrayal of emerging sexuality and the excitement, embarrassment and power games it generates, set in the context of the cost of secrecy and betrayal. (THE OBSERVER 2012-12-09)

Award-winning author Annabel Pitcher's new teen novel is a taut and dramatic adventure with a deep yearning at its heart. Ketchup Clouds vividly captures the terrifying roller coaster of emotion that envelopes Zoe when she gets caught in a tragic love triangle between two brothers. Zoe's heart races for the mysterious Aaron but, despite his seeming keenness, he already has a girlfriend. And then there is younger brother Max, unattached and very keen on Zoe. How can Zoe manage her own feelings without hurting the boys especially when she's also coping with puzzling dramas at home? (Julia Eccleshare LOVEREADING)

Ketchup Clouds is smart, funny, moving, suspensful and psychologically astute. (Adi Bloom TES 2013-01-04)

Ketchup Clouds is risky, confident, compelling and ends... with hope for redemption and self-forgiveness. (Mal Peet The Guardian 2013-01-04)

Pitcher's award-winning first novel, My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece, had guilt at its core. This superb follow-up also explores guilt and responsibility but with such a pitch perfect tone that the innocence of adolescence, the violence of murder and an undercurrent of black humour sit happily side by side. This is a vivid and rewarding portrait of passion and betrayal, captured in authentic teenage tones. (Sally Morris Daily Mail 2013-01-15)

Blending powerful emotion and darkness with ironic humour, it is a gripping and moving story about secrets, lies and growing up. Sometimes uncomfortable, sometimes wistful, often funny and always compassionate, this is a beautifully-crafted and unexpected coming-of-age story that will win readers' hearts. (Booktrust 2013-01-07)

A gripping, must-read book for 2013 (Bella 2013-01-15)

Annabel Pitcher creates a moving and compassionate story, capturing Zoe's loss of innocence beautifully as well as her journey of heartache and desire. Ketchup Clouds is edgy and poised. With twists and turns, its hard to put down and makes the perfect follow up to Pitcher's sensational debut. (Cosmopolitan 2013-01-09)

A wonderful, romantic and sad story told through a series of letters written by a fifteen-year-old girl to a man on death row. It's heart-stoppingly gorgeous and we'd recommend it to anyone. (The Bookbag)

It's utterly refreshing to see a YA writer be so honest about everyday life and not look away when times are dark. I suppose the beauty of her work is in her honesty, but also in her humour. (Dog Ear Discs)

Pitcher's tale of troubled family life is deftly done... A moving and ultimately highly compassionate tale. To be human is to err, after all. (Martin Chilton The Telegraph 2013-01-03)

a memorable and compelling novel to devour in one, weepy, sitting. (Laura Fraine Books for Keeps)

Clever, warm and poignant, this book is the perfect way to begin your new year's resolutions to fill those bookshelves! (Claire Frost Fabulous Mag)

...poignant, funny and utterly beguiling. The author's writing style is as appealing and offbeat as the book's title. (CHOICE MAGAZINE)

Powerful and utterly original... (Natasha Harding THE SUN 2013-04-05) --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Book Description

Secrets, romance, murder and lies: Zoe shares a terrible secret in a letter to a stranger on death row in this prize-winning second novel from the bestselling author of the debut, MY SISTER LIVES ON THE MANTELPIECE.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I just love epistolary fiction! 8 Jan 2013
By Serendipity Reviews TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
Originally posted on [...]

Opening one of Annabel's books is like opening a long awaited Christmas confectionery box, that you know you should eat all at once but temptation gets the better of you and you don't stop until you have scoffed the lot. If you haven't guessed from that, I read the whole book in one sitting, refusing to do anything else.
If that doesn't make you curious to read it, then the following reasons should have you hurdling the Kindle book sales to get hold of a copy of this.
1) It is an epistolary novel written in the form of letters dated over the period of a year. That alone, should make many people want to read it.
2) The narrator is a fifteen year old girl who is writing anonymous letters to a convict on Death Row in America. She is purging her soul in order to come to terms with the guilt she feels for taking a life.
3) The love triangle is beautiful yet poignant and the author keeps you on your toes all the way through the book. It wasn't until the last couple of chapters that I could finally work out what would happen.
Annabel Pitcher books should definitely now come with a warning as this is the second time she has made me cry. I invested all my emotions into this story, willing it to have a happy ending. I loved the way Zoe thought her crimes were bad enough that the only person who might understand would be a murderer on Death Row. She really had sunk to her lowest point in life. I constantly wanted to hug her as she confessed her sins to a complete stranger.
The book contains excellent sub plots which explore the theme of guilt, which plays a major factor in the main plot.
The characters are so realistic and believable; the author has really captured the teenage voice.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A quick and easy read 16 Dec 2013
By Shelly
Format:Paperback
I enjoyed this. I'm 29, so older than the target audience, but I liked how easy it was to read and follow. The premise of the book is refreshingly different.

I'd recommend it for over 13s as it has some quite racy parts.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ok read 25 Aug 2013
Format:Hardcover
I was quite looking forward to this book after reading My Sister Lives On The Mantlepiece but I was quite disappointed. Whilst the main plot is good and the structure of the book is interesting, I found it dragged on a lot. The main factor of the book is that you are building up to find out which boy Zoe killed, Aaron or Max and the story behind it. But up until that point I found it rather boring, and I was rather disappointed with the climax too. ***spoiler*** I found it to be rather misleading as well, as she claimed to have murdered him when she clearly didn't mean to kill him by pushing him. It didn't make me want to keep reading it, and I felt like I could skim over paragraphs and not miss anything if I wanted to. An ok book, but could have been so much better.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy read 4 Aug 2013
By Joss340
Format:Paperback
This defiantly kept me entertained while I was on my jury service, as most will know it can be a lot of waiting around so I bought this book after reading the first page in water stones and I must say its a book I could probably read over and over.
Good, easy read for a teenager and young adult.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing 22 May 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
What an amazing book. It's 4.19am and I've been reading since 9pm. Couldn't put it down. Truly wonderful and sad.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as I expected 17 Nov 2013
By Sarah H
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I bought this book because it had won or been nominated for various awards and so I thought it was going to be something special. However I found that I didn't warm to any of the characters and didn't really care what happened to any of them, especially not the character who died. All of the outpourings of guilt and build up to what was essentially a stupid drunken accident did not make for an interesting ending and I was left feeling pretty depressed and deflated by the end. I also did not like the narrative style and the flippant way that some of the issues were treated, and I definitely didn't feel that there was much a romance between any of the characters. Maybe I feel this way because one of my friends died when I was the same age as the characters in this book and I remember it vividly, with a lot more emotion.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth a read 15 Feb 2014
By w
Format:Paperback
It was very well written, but I didn't find myself drawn to the characters and I found the ending very disappointing.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It was an okay read.... 30 Dec 2013
By Jenna
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I chose this rating as it was okay but it takes to long to get to the meaning of the story and why she is writing. I liked the way she reflected on her life to a stranger it was an interesting way of telling the story. I also liked the way she was in between two boys and knew which one was best for her but couldn't tell the other one that he wasn't the one.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars READ
THIS IS one of my fave books now believe it or not I read it all in day,it's amazing and really funny hilarious,makes you cry and laugh at the same time and I jus learned so much... Read more
Published 3 days ago by nihal humeyra celikcan
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Such a good book! Enjoyed every page of it.
Published 5 days ago by Marissa Jamie Belle Kueek
5.0 out of 5 stars a very unique novel
when i bought this book the cover portrayed quite a differentvstory in my mind. but none the less i read as i would do with any other book. Wow! Read more
Published 6 days ago by Ms. J. M. Rees
5.0 out of 5 stars HEART BREAKING
This book is an absolute must read and it changed the way I think if criminals completely . The bits about love and stuff are really sad a d made me cry .I LOVE THIS BOOK.
Published 7 days ago by Lisa Weir
4.0 out of 5 stars Really good book
Really good book. def worth a read
Published 9 days ago by Lou Lou
4.0 out of 5 stars Truly Moving
I would definitely recommend this book to any John Green fans. After reading Pitcher's previous book - I was dying to read this one and I am very glad I did so! Read more
Published 17 days ago by Sharon Midgley
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is awesome sauce
I love this book so much; the characters are so relatable and it is told in a really unique way. The end was a bit of an anticlimax, but it still made me cry so... Read more
Published 19 days ago by Mattie Doubleday
3.0 out of 5 stars So-so YA thriller based on a love triangle
14-year-old Zoe Collins is writing to a death row inmate in America. But hers are no ordinary letters. Read more
Published 1 month ago by I Read, Therefore I Blog
5.0 out of 5 stars Ketchup Clouds
This book is the best book I've ever read and I've read loads of books.I cried several times and laughed out loud lots but the most heart warming part of the book is where she... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Tabitha Green
3.0 out of 5 stars A Lovely, Unique Read
I think I'm pretty much the only person who hasn't read Annabel Pitcher's acclaimed debut, My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece. Read more
Published 1 month ago by S
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