Thursday, July 21, 2011

Review: Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready

From Amazon: Gr 8 Up–Aura and her boyfriend are anticipating a special evening: it's Logan's 17th birthday, his band is playing an important gig, and they have intimate plans for the after party. However, things go horribly wrong when Logan drinks heavily, takes the cocaine that a record label rep gave to him, and dies. Logan is gone, but not really. Aura, like everyone else aged 16 and younger, was born after the Shift and can see and talk to ghosts. This ability has long annoyed her, and she has yearned to find out why the phenomenon happened so that she can end it. Now, still very much in love, Aura is ecstatic to see and hear Logan's spirit, though they can't touch. Then Zachary, a new boy, enters the picture and he and Aura discover that they share a mysterious bond: they were born one minute apart (he the last one pre-Shift and she the first after). Meanwhile, Logan's parents decide to sue the record label for providing their son with drugs, hoping that Logan will pass on if they win. If he doesn't find peace, he risks becoming a shade, a violent emanation considered a public-safety threat. This complex novel has numerous subplots. Occasionally, the chapters seem to take sudden turns from one story line to another, making the first-person narrative somewhat confusing. Nevertheless, the characters are interesting, and so is the clearly developed alternative world. Filled with romance and featuring a strong protagonist

My Review: In today's literary world, everything has been done, redone, and done again. But Jeri's world is totally fresh and new. She creates a lore and mythology all her own and does it in such a way that you feel this could very well be your own reality. Well written, Shade is the begining of a hopefully very successful and popular series

4 out of 5 stars.

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