March 16, 2013

Who-done-it and ghost story in one

The Dead and BuriedThe Dead and Buried by Kim Harrington
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

There is nothing more disappointing than a story that says it is a ghost story, but really is a trick of the wind or some other natural phenomena. This book did not disappoint.

The story opens with a family moving into a house once occupied by a family and their high school-aged daughter, who died after a tragic fall down the stairs. Five-year-old Colby wakes up seeing a girl standing in his room. He explains to the main character Jade, what the girl looks like and how he can see through her. Soon, what begins as an innocent child's vision turns into a frightening ghost story. Meanwhile, the school scene for Jade is filled with the usual mean girls and social misfits that often populate YA fiction, just as they do in real life. Jade works to solve the mystery of who killed the ghost-girl Kayla. Can't say more as it might ruin the story.

Told in first person, the story has an intimate, personal feel immediately. The voice is very similar to some other well-known YA authors, for example Laurie Halse Anderson. The girl is intelligent and the narrative doesn't reflect a childish tone. So it doesn't talk down to kids or irritate the adult reader.

Even though I have a horrible cold, I stayed up way post my bedtime last night to finish this book. Highly recommended for those who read YA and those who don't.

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