Foul is Fair by Hannah Capin

Posted January 22, 2020 by Amber in Reviews / 0 Comments

Foul is Fair

Foul is Fair

by Hannah Capin

Series: Foul is Fair #1
Publisher: Wednesday Books on February 4, 2020
Genre: Contemporary, Crime, Retellings
Target Age Group: Young Adult
Rating: ★★★★

Check out this book on Goodreads

Elle and her friends Mads, Jenny, and Summer rule their glittering LA circle. Untouchable, they have the kind of power other girls only dream of. Every party is theirs and the world is at their feet. Until the night of Elle’s sweet sixteen, when they crash a St. Andrew’s Prep party. The night the golden boys choose Elle as their next target.

They picked the wrong girl.

Sworn to vengeance, Elle transfers to St. Andrew’s. She plots to destroy each boy, one by one. She’ll take their power, their lives, and their control of the prep school’s hierarchy. And she and her coven have the perfect way in: a boy named Mack, whose ambition could turn deadly.


Disclaimer: I received this book for free from NetGalley and Wednesday Books in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

If you are looking for a ruthless, black-hearted tale of dark revenge, then Foul is Fair is absolutely the book you need.

Before I go any further, I would like to reference the content warning page on Hannah Capin’s website. This book overflows with triggers and before you even consider picking it up, it is absolutely vital you read this page. I do not want anyone picking up this book on my recommendation, and end up feeling unsafe.  Please do not take this lightly.

For the pure adrenaline of it, Foul is Fair will swallow its readers whole.  Anger and malice flow evenly, and the pages drip with so much blood I almost expected to look down and see it on my hands.  A horrible, unspeakable crime is committed against Jade at the beginning on the book, and the rest of the story is spent making sure everyone – everyone – with even the barest inkling of involvement pays the price.

While you’re reading it, Foul is Fair is perfect.  The pacing is so quick and the rage so vibrant you don’t realize the flaws until you set it aside.  So this is going to be a very successful book depending upon what you are looking to get from it.  If not for the seriousness of the topics address, I’d call it an indulgent book.  It’s not a literary masterpiece, but Foul is Fair is alive with so much hate… you can’t help but gobble it up.

Almost all of the following observations were realizations after I’d set the book aside for the day, or after I finished it.  It seems important to emphasize that – you really don’t notice the flaws as you’re reading.  Except, for me, there was one.  The ease of which Jade was able to work her plan.  In mere days she has matriculated into a new, prestigious private school.  Her friends and even (it seems) her parents are immediately on board for murder.  There’s severe manipulation involved at St. Andrew’s Prep, but outside that school… it’s like everyone came to their own simultaneous, very illegal conclusion and were able to make it happen with a snap of their fingers.  There was a lot of suspension of disbelief required to push that aside, particularly with Jade’s parents.

The characters blend together, especially the boys.  I had to keep reminding myself: who is Duffy?  Which one is Malcolm?  I actually think this was done intentionally, as o Jade, they’re all the same: targets in her quest for complete vengeance.  But on the other hand, the girls blend together, too.  Piper and Lilia stood out just fine, but Summer, Jenny, and Mads… I had to keep referencing.  In maintaining the flow and heat of the story, Capin sacrificed character development.  This also means we’re missing a lot of motives and you have to read between the lines a lot.  Before writing this review, I actually went back and re-read some chapters because I wanted to make sure of my own facts.  In reality, the details are there, but you have to dig for them.  They’re all swept away with the momentum.

I wouldn’t say that, ultimately, I loved this book?  Foul is Fair swept me up, but it wasn’t one of those warm, fuzzy books that made me want to read it again and again.  BUT.  That’s extremely personal – I don’t thrive off dark, vengeful books so there are others who will love this!  I deeply appreciated it though – I think Hannah Capin did a wonderful job of bringing MacBeth to life in a contemporary

Ratings Breakdown

Setting: ★★★ 1/2
Plot: ★★★
Characters: ★★ 1/2
Writing: ★★★★ 1/2
Pacing: ★★★★★
Personal Enjoyment: ★★★★


What lengths would you go to for revenge?  Jade would call me cowardly, but I prefer to handle things legally?  I don’t think I could ever kill someone.  What do you guys think?  Does it depend on the crime?  Let me know in the comments!

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