Kami Glass loves someone she’s never met . . . a boy she’s talked to in her head ever since she was born. She wasn’t silent about her imaginary friend during her childhood, and is thus a bit of an outsider in her sleepy English town of Sorry-in-the-Vale. Still, Kami hasn’t suffered too much from not fitting in. She has a best friend, runs the school newspaper, and is only occasionally caught talking to herself. Her life is in order, just the way she likes it, despite the voice in her head.
But all that changes when the Lynburns return.
The Lynburn family has owned the spectacular and sinister manor that overlooks Sorry-in-the-Vale for centuries. The mysterious twin sisters who abandoned their ancestral home a generation ago are back, along with their teenage sons, Jared and Ash, one of whom is eerily familiar to Kami. Kami is not one to shy away from the unknown—in fact, she’s determined to find answers for all the questions Sorry-in-the-Vale is suddenly posing. Who is responsible for the bloody deeds in the depths of the woods? What is her own mother hiding? And now that her imaginary friend has become a real boy, does she still love him? Does she hate him? Can she trust him?
I'm gonna be completely honest with you and say that I have already read book 2. I know, I know, I read the second book before I wrote the review for the first book and now I'm going to attempt to write a review for the first book without involving the second. But I just HAD to keep reading!! Confused yet?
Aaaaaahhhhh, this book. I just--How do I adequately express my love for this book? Let me count the ways:
1. Wit. And humor and all things funny. Seriously, so funny. Every time I read a book that I think is funny I'll talk to someone about and be all, "Hey that was funny," and they'll be all, "What are you talking about? That book was about war," and I'll be all, "But the characters were hilarious and said some mood-lifting funny things," and then they'll raise their eyebrows and look slowly away. *Ahem* So, in short, I think most things are funny. And when a book is intentionally funny and I get it and I like it and it actually makes me laugh, I love it automatically. This was so my style. Kami is adorably quirky and cute. She says somewhat bizarre stuff but coming from her it's so natural and perfect. Angela may be my favorite character. She hates people. And I love her for it. I remember saying that exact line all throughout high school. Everything she says is hilarious in that doom and morbidity kind of way.
2. Strong Characters. Kami, while being funny, was strong and capable. She kind of used her reputation as an odd little daydreamer to find information and take on the toughest people around. She was just so good and kind and had this wonderful self-assurance, which probably comes from someone constantly reassuring her in her mind. I kind of loved that everyone was strong. The only characters that didn't feel especially strong but that fit their characters were Jared and Ash. They both felt a bit needy and insecure. But it worked. They were believable and completely understandable. And on top of that, all the characters sounded like themselves, not carbon-copy mimics of each other. I could tell who was talking by what they said. Which is always a good thing. A really good thing.
3. Plot Development. I can't tell you how much I loved the way this story played out!!! I mean, I really can't or I'd spoil it all for you. Everything fell together in a believable yet unexpected way. It actually felt like Brennan planned everything out starting at the climax of the book and worked backward, if that makes sense. In other words, nothing felt like it just accidentally happened or was put in there to build suspense or create drama. That was the way it was. And it was perfect.
4. The Setting. Sorry-in-the-Vale is a sleepy little English countryside town. Everyone knew each other and there were crazy secrets hidden in odd places and the whole time I was reading I was doing so in my fake English-American accent in my head. Except for the boys who had American accents (although their dialog sounded suspiciously British). It was just fun to read like that.
5. Pacing. This book started well, developed well and ended well. I was never bored. I never felt like any portion of this story was dragging. I wanted to keep reading and reading and reading! Seriously, I could not put this book down! So good! The story pulled me in from the beginning, moving fast when necessary, slowing down when the story called for it. It all felt so right.
6. The Boys. Ok, so this is a love triangle thing. It is. I know. But this one was a lot of fun, I promise! And Kami's choices make sense. So do Ash and Jared. And, man are these boys attractive! (The way I imagine them, anyway) The link between Kami and Jared is so interesting and nicely done. I love the way they are together and I love the way they progress together. Ash makes a lot of sense, too, with his always-trying-to-be-perfect persona going on. So... Yum.
7. This book was clean. Squeaky, deliciously, beautifully clean. I think there may have been one or two curse words in this entire book. And they were pretty tame ones.
So, in short: Read this book! It's adorable and fun and mildly creepy and intense and light and just oh so perfect. I love it.
Sexual Content: Mild
Violence: Moderate (some fight scenes, deaths)