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Ketchup Clouds

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  13,828 ratings  ·  1,747 reviews
Secrets, romance, murder and lies: Zoe shares a terrible secret in a letter to a stranger on death row in this second novel from the author of the bestselling debut, My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece.

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
Paperback, 293 pages
Published December 27th 2012 by Orion
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DerBericht At the end she watched the sunset with a boy (no spoiler) and the clouds were red so she called them ketchup clouds.
Universa Red Maybe she changed name because Zoe always writes 'yours truly' but it doesn't meet the concept of the book. Zoe always talks about things fading into …moreMaybe she changed name because Zoe always writes 'yours truly' but it doesn't meet the concept of the book. Zoe always talks about things fading into nothing. If people didn't know the title of the book they wouldn't think of Dot talking about ketchup clouds as a point of interest almost as if it 'Fades into nothing' so I think personally believe Annabel Pitcher changed the name so people would find the moral understanding of the book without it being directed at them .I think if all writers did this maybe we would all connect with the books a bit more but then again we wouldn't know what they were about.(less)
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Average rating 3.76  · 
Rating details
 ·  13,828 ratings  ·  1,747 reviews

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Dec 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
"...my stomach ached with disappointment at the familiarity of it all. Humans. We're all the same. There's no escaping it...Doesn't matter what language you speak or what clothes you wear. Some things don't change. Families. Friends. Lovers. They're the same in every city in every country in every continent of the world."

If you're a Netflixter, then you're aware of the unique rating algorithm that essentially takes the guess work out of whether you will love or hate a movie based on your pa
Jul 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, best-of-2018
This book had been on my tbr for AGES, and when I recently came across it in my library, I thought now is as good a time as any to give it a try, especially as I had been binging crime fiction and needed a little break.
Ketchup Clouds is not an easy book to describe. It's got elements of a coming-of-age story, a mystery, romance and a dose of strangeness pervading the pages. I was surprised that it was considerably more melancholy than I expected. In the beginning, I thought it was
Nov 10, 2012 rated it it was ok
So, I have to admit, I’m extremely underwhelmed by this book. I’ve never read My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece but I’ve heard it’s great. It never really appealed to me though, I’m not sure why.

But Ketchup Clouds appealed to me, really it did. I was captivated by the gorgeous cover, the wonderful title and the intriguing synopsis.

I guess you know what they say: you shouldn’t judge a book by a gorgeous cover, a wonderful title and… well, you get the gist.

This was such a disappointment. There wa
Trigger warning: Sexual consent issues. Slut shaming. Sexual coercion. Talk of domestic violence leading to death. (view spoiler)

Someone is dead. Zoe says she's responsible for his death. The narrative is insistent we won't find out who or how for far too long, like, all the damn book (leading to awkward reminises about 'The Boy' and 'Her Son'). I'm calling this the GIANT AWFUL SECRET
reading is my hustle
Immature and childish story about a teen girl caught between two brothers. I am obviously not the target audience for this one.

No idea what the title is about.
Stephen Robert Collins
May 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This an award winning YA book it's a mystery, with plot twisting turns that lot of so called adult books don't have.
I had hard time thinking that this YA but at over 50 ys old I wish that there been books available like this when I was 14 but by time I was 7ys I read Agatha Christie & most of Dennis Whately At 11'
Sarah Churchill
Mar 06, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own
Please can Dot be my little sister?!
Aug 26, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, ketchup clouds. After reading this book I still do not know why it is called ketchup clouds. Well not really.

If you are looking for a happy summer read which leaves you in the same way as you were before you started the book then maybe this is not for you.

This book is about a girl and two boys. Yes I know what you're thinking not another love triangle but, it is more a story about a girl finding herself and accepting what she has done. She writes to a man of death row, she does not give h
Kluxorious Kluxces
Urgh I suffered through this book. Zoe just pissed me off. She's selfish and such a bitch! Aron is no better. How can you do that to your brother! Jeebus.

I am not going to be coherent with this one. This book doesnt deserved any more attention. It is one of my disappointed reads of 2016.

The style of writing is so immature. Just urgghhhhh

Story 1/5
Character 2/5
Development 3/5
Enjoyment 2/5
Style of writing 2/5
Overall 2/5
Jan 12, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't know why, but I somehow love reading books of the contemporary genre. And for the record (aside from its strange title), I chose Ketchup Clouds because of its cover (haha can't help it) and its interesting synopsis that got me curious all along.

"I've done something wrong and do you know the worst thing? I got away with it."

The main character can't keep her secret to herself any longer, so she decided to tell her story to someone. She introduced herself as Zoe. Her story was told from
Aug 30, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
( 4.5 stars )

I've had this book for ages and literally knew very little about it but recently I felt an urge to just finally get round to reading it and WOW this book took me by surprise!

The concept and characters all felt so real and I really enjoyed reading this book and seeing how the story unfolded. I can't help but feel as though the ending was slightly anti climatic but it kind of helped make the story seem even more real and interesting!

The family in this book were so so well written and
Oct 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
When Annabel Pitcher's debut novel My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece was published in March last year she really raised the bar for authors of young adult novels and set herself a very very high standard to keep. The novel was shortlisted for numerous awards and was praised by other authors, by the press and by book bloggers.

I was very excited to receive a pre-publication copy of her second novel Ketchup Clouds which will be published by Indigo (an imprint of Orion) at the end of the year.

Stacey (prettybooks)
Ketchup Clouds is a book that had been loitering around my wishlist for while, even though I didn't really know what it was about (ketchup?!) so, because my curiosity got the better of me, I finally checked it out of the library. I wasn't too sure what to expect, but I didn't expect to fall in love with it straight away. Ketchup Clouds is one of those books that makes me tell everyone I know about it (of course, everyone already knew about it since it won the Waterstones Children's Book Prize 20 ...more
Brittany (whatbritreads)
I just know for a fact that had I read this book when I was fifteen, it would’ve been an all time favourite and I probably would’ve orbited my personality around it. As an older reader I was a tad more critical, but this was still a brilliant read.

Right from the get go, this book did intrigue and mystery really well. We had the subtle dropping of hints and weaving in clues from the start, but while that gave me a hint of what was coming, I really had no idea how it was all going to go and the en
Oct 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Annabel Pitcher’s debut novel My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece was one of my favourite reads of 2011 so I have been keenly anticipating her second novel, hoping that it would engage me and move me in a similar way. Well, it’s a very different type of novel but I’m delighted to report that it packs the same punch as its predecessor.

The novel is composed of a series of letters written by a fifteen year old British girl and addressed to Stuart Harris, a prisoner on Death Row in Texas. Initially,
Bang Bang Books
2.5 but it wasn't good enough to bump it up to a 3.
Not what I was expecting.
(view spoiler)
"Dear Mr Harris....Ignore the blob of red in the top left corner. It's jam not blood, though I don't think I need to tell you the difference". And so begins the story of 15 year old Zoe, a troubled teen, in letters she writes to Stuart Harris, a convicted murderer on death row in Texas, charged with murdering his wife.

I enjoyed the epistolary structure of the novel. Through her letters Zoe recounts the troubled events of the past year of her life. The intimacy of the letters and the freedom Zoe
Kimberly Ho
Jan 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Rating: 4.5/5

This book. Just wow. I could honestly say I connected INSTANTLY to the character's voice. The whole mystery surrounding who she killed and why she killed was just intense. I couldn't put it down once I started.

This wasn't just one story about Zoe, the main character. It interweaves 3 stories together. Zoe, Stuart's, and Dot's. The plot and story line was fast paced and makes you ponder why, what, how, when.

I didn't really like the ending to Zoe's part. The way it ended was just uns
Stephanie (Stepping Out Of The Page)
Since hearing about Ketchup Clouds, I was eager to get my hands on a copy of it! I absolutely loved the sound of the blurb and Annabel Pitcher is one of those authors that I think will always appeal to me - she has the most interesting ideas and a very unique voice.

The whole idea behind this story was something that immediately intrigued me. Our main character, Zoe, has made a big mistake, committed a crime, and has decided that she can no longer keep it to herself, so she decides to let it all
Apr 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I first heard about this book from Charley over at CharleyReads on YouTube. When she described the book, I was immediately interested. You don't read much YA that deals with the people in prison.

In Ketchup Clouds, by Annabel Pitcher, the main character, "Zoe", writes to a death row inmate in Texas. She starts writing to him in order to confess the crime she thinks she has committed. The inmate, Stewart Harris, seems to be the only person she can turn to. "Zoe" feels like she has no one else to t
Diane S ☔
Oct 23, 2013 rated it liked it
Teenage angst and drama though presented in a unique fashion. Finding a penpal on Death Row, Zoe uses letters to him as a way to tell her story.

The premise I was sold on: "some girls get away with murder". The premise I received: some girls whine about their lives to death row inmates.

Bullet points for speed and clarity! Away we go!
•SLUT SHAMING. Honestly, what the fuck? The book was filled with little digs and jabs at the MC's supposed sluttiness. And the messed up part? It is told from the MC's POV in letter form. So she is picking herself apart for her sexual behavior months later, and in letters to a complete
Emma Carroll
Jan 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
In 'Ketchup Clouds' acknowledgements, Annabel Pitcher says the story ' took a long while to get right.' I'm glad she took the time; this is one of the best books I've read in ages.
The story is told from Zoe's viewpoint. This isn't her real name, but then Zoe is a girl hiding more than her true identity. Zoe has a secret, a secret so crushing that she has to share it. And so she does, via letters to a death row prisoner who knows all about guilt.
These letters are what 'Ketchup Clouds' comprises
Aug 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Review may contain spoilers.

This book is about people. Real people with real, relatable lives. It tears at your heart. 'Zoe' is desperate. So desperate she'll send anonymous messages to a murderer. I don't believe she is a murderer. She made mistakes. Of course she did. Awful mistakes that caused somebody's death. But she is a human being. Stuart Harris is a human being too. Nobody deserved to die.

I like to think of this as a love story. But it's not a love story between Zoe and Max, or Zoe and
Jan 18, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oh wow, I'm still trying to gather my thoughts about this book. I started reading Ketchup Clouds knowing pretty much nothing about it, but still hoping it would be a good read because I've read some really good things about this book. And oh my, what a lovely surprise I had.

I can't really describe this book to you, half of it is a cute contemporary story with heartwarming characters and also real life problems about family but on the other side the main character is pen paling with a death row c
Nov 07, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Actual rating: 2.5

This book was not the best. The characters were very annoying, and it took a while for me to get into it.
Over all this book was just okay.
2.5 stars.
Jodie (jodie.loves.books)
Okay, so I didn’t really have very high expectations for this book, purely because I felt like I was too old to appreciate this story for what it was - a 15 year old writing letters. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this story and how well I was able to relate to ‘Zoe’. There were many different levels to this book and lots of issues tackled: grief, love, guilt, relationships. All of which were explored honestly and beautifully. I love Annabel Pitcher’s writing style and I loved ...more
Chloe Reads Books
Dec 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
4.5 STARS (Re-read ended 14.12.20): This book was seriously so great, there was just something little missing for me. I loved that it was told in letters, and the pure emotion in this book broke my little heart. But, I feel like we needed a bit more build up in the romantic relationships, and the big event at the end all happened a little quickly!
Michelle (Pink Polka Dot Books)
Sep 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Zoe is writing what she can't say to anyone else to a stranger on death row. Zoe has a secret eating her up inside. A secret so big she knows the only person who would understand is someone who is capable of taking a life, just like she did. So from all the way in England, a teenage girl writes letters to a Texas jailhouse confessing the worst year of her life, and hoping that maybe once it's all out there, she might finally be able to live with herself.

My Thoughts
This is one of the special ones
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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.

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