Since giving birth I have to admit I haven’t read much fiction at all. It’s hard to find time to juggle everything you need to as a new mum, especially when it comes to fitting in work as well. My reading time has been given mostly to self-help books, educational books on a wide range of mumsy things and of course, reams and reams of overly cute rhyming books, some complete with finger puppets for my son. When I saw Killing It, the debut novel by Asia Mackay, it was the title cover that made me think “I need to read this book”. Whoever designed that cover absolutely nailed it, but did the writing deliver?
Book Cover: Killing It by Asia Mackay, published by Zaffre (12 July 2018)
In Killing It, Alexa Tyler struggles with the same issues as many mums do when juggling career and a family. Heading back to work after maternity leave she has to combat her own self-doubt over whether she’s still good enough for the job, her emotional turmoil about leaving her young daughter with a nanny, the put-downs of colleagues in a male-orientated workplace and the practical aspects of things like working and pumping when you’re breastfeeding, trusting your nanny and getting home before bed.
She also has to deal with the fact that she’s a trained assassin working for a super secret government agency, her partner is her ex-lover, her maternity stand-in wants to sabotage her career and steal her job and she has to go undercover to overthrow a Russian threat. Perhaps not quite the same as the rest of us then… at least she has killer stilettos and a bullet proof pram to work with.
This is a fun, action packed thriller that doesn’t take itself too seriously despite the subject matter. Killing It is light heartened and entertaining and although the whole secret spy thing isn’t that realistic (and doesn’t need to be), it’s entirely relatable to new mums, especially those battling workplace woes and feeling like they have something to prove.
We follow as Lex has to use her newfound status as “mum” to go undercover and neutralize the threat, all whilst dodging bullets, insults and doubts both from herself and others. It manages to pull at the heartstrings a little as well, whilst we explore her blossoming relationship with her husband and put to rest some past experiences with her partner.
It’s a little bit heavy handed on the feminism and girl-power rhetoric with that core message being repeated throughout. We get you girl, you’re a powerful independent woman, roar. If you’re not a parent, this book may fall flat, as it does play heavily into Lex’s relate-ability as a working mum. If I’d read this before I had a child, I’d have struggled a lot more to relate. That being said if you’re reading my blog, you probably are – or will be – a mother, and will find yourself nodding (or grimacing) along with the parenting woes.
Overall 4 stars from me – Killing It is a gripping debut, enjoyable and well written, proof that you can be a badass with a baby!
Killing It releases on July 12th on Amazon Kindle and Paperback. Buy it now! I’d like to thank the publishers for providing me with a review copy of this book.