Something is wrong with Esmé.
Kicked out of school in New York, she’s sent to live with her grandmother in a small Appalachian town. But something is wrong with the grandmother Ez hasn’t seen for years; she leaves at midnight, carrying a big black bag. Something is wrong with her grandmother’s house, a decrepit mansion full of stray cats, stairs that lead to nowhere, beds that unmake themselves. Something is wrong in the town where a kid disappears every year, where a whistle sounds at night but no train arrives.
And something is wrong with the friendly neighbor Ez’s age with black curls and blue eyes: He’s dead.
I do love young adult lit, especially when it is in the paranormal realm. So when I read the blurb on this, I thought, what the heck. I’ll try it out. So glad I did.
Esmé Wong has problems. She used to be a good student, but that has laxed, her fellow students make fun of her and the teachers don’t help. When she loses Acid, the boy she thought of as her best friend, she feels compelled to do something. Gets caught. And is exiled to live with her grandmother in Wellstone, a tiny town with not much to recommend it except for the fact at least one child goes missing yearly.
And when she arrives in Wellstone, things get weirder. Everyone ignores her: her grandmother, her teachers, even her fellow students. They all act as though she doesn’t exist. Until finally she runs into a few people who do see and interact with her. They have one minor flaw – they’re dead. And one of them has a huge flaw: he wants to kill her. Is Ez dead or is something else going on? What happened to her in the tunnel? And why hasn’t Acid contacted her since he left her that day in New York?
Yeah, I can’t answer those for you because they would be giving away what the author did well to lead, bit-by-bit, through a wonderful mystery maze of questions.
This is definitely an interesting story. I was hooked and had to keep reading. For me, the only flaws were A: What happened with Tom? B: Does her gift mean that she will no longer… well, I can’t mention that – but does it mean she won’t be able to do that anymore? C: Is there gonna be a sequel? D: Will Tom be back? (Yeah, I wanna know what’s
gonna happen with Tom! J ) E: Will someone make Collette grow up? *grins*
Come on, don’t you want to read a unique book with ghosts, a mystery, and strange disappearances?
ALISON STINE’s first novel SUPERVISION will be released by Harper Voyager UK in 2015.
Also the author of three books of poetry: WAIT (University of Wisconsin Press, 2011), OHIO VIOLENCE (University of North Texas Press, 2009), and LOT OF MY SISTER (Kent State University Press, 2001), she has worked as an actor, an artist’s model, a high school teacher, and a professor. She holds a Ph.D. in English from Ohio University, and is an avid urban explorer.
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