R.L. Stine’s 1997 YA novel, Killer’s Kiss, tells the story of Karina and Delia.
Karina and Delia have always been rivals. If one gets a good grade, the other has to get a better grade. If there’s a competition for a prestigious prize, you can bet that Karina and Delia will be at the center of it. You can’t be friends with Karina if you’re going to be friends with Delia, that’s just a given. And, since this is an R.L. Stine book, Karina and Delia are especially competitive when it comes to boys!
That’s where Vincent comes in. When the book open, Vincent is making out with Delia and Delia mentions how happy she is that Vincent chose her over Karina. Well, it turns out that Vincent is either totally wishy washy or just has a bad sense of humor because guess what? He didn’t chose Delia over Karina. Instead, he chose both of them! Vincent is secretly seeing both girls but you know how it is on Fear Street. You can’t keep a secret for long.
Soon, Delia and Karina are competing for more than the Conklin Award (which is one of those weird high school prizes that always end up leading to murderous drama on Fear Street). They’re competing for Vincent, who really doesn’t seem like he deserves all the attention but again, it’s an R.L. Stine book. When Vincent turns up dead, it not only means that prom night is going to have to be replanned. It also means that either Delia or Karina is the murderer! Karina accuses Delia! Delia accuses Karina! Who is the guilty party!?
As you may have guessed from my strained attempts to fake some enthusiasm while discussing the plot of this novel, Killer’s Kiss is not one of the better Fear Street entires. Basically, it’s a book about two rivals competing for the chance to date a complete jerk. It’s hard to get emotionally involved in something like that. Beyond that, the whole rivalry between Delia and Karina just feels exaggerated and fake. They’re both kind of annoying. I wouldn’t want to know either one of them. Finally, the mystery itself is pretty easy to figure out. The novel does end with a bit of deus ex machina that simply has to be read to believed but, otherwise, this is lesser Stine.