Number of Pages: 350
For ages 15+ for strong language, drug references, and sexual content
"When her best guy friend falls victim to a vicious hate crime, sixteen-year-old Cat sets out to discover who in her small town did it. Richly atmospheric, this daring mystery mines the secrets of a tightly knit Southern community and examines the strength of will it takes to go against everyone you know in the name of justice.
Against a backdrop of poverty, clannishness, drugs, and intolerance, Myracle has crafted a harrowing coming-of-age tale couched in a deeply intelligent mystery. Smart, fearless, and compassionate, this is an unforgettable work from a beloved author."-Goodreads
This book had a strong story line that pulled you in on the first page. I have to say that this book is kind of dark in a way. The situations are grueling and extremely painful to read. But I couldn't put the darn book down.
Sixteen year old Cat used to be extremely outgoing, but when her brother's friend, Tommy, takes advantage of her, she crawls into her own little shell and shuts everyone out. Now, Patrick, her old bestfriend has been attacked for a hate crime over his sexuality, she has to come out of her shell to find out who almost killed him. I loved Cat's personality. She was the shy girl who when she put her mind to it, could have one strong personality. She had been put through a whole lot and she was clueless on what she should do. I really had a tough time reading some of her situations, just because she was put through SO much.
It was really refreshing for me to read a contemporary after reading all of these other complex books. And what is even more surprising is how much I liked this book when there was close to NO romance and it was contemporary. But there were some touchy situations in this book that drew me in. Another thing that drew me in was the way this book was written. You could definitely hear Cat's voice and personality throughout the narration of this book.
This is a really hard book to read. Believe me, it is. There are scenarios in this book that are so tough that sometimes I felt like I needed to just put the book down and think. It has an extreme impact on you. If you don't like reading serious story lines, then I don't recommend reading this book.
Another thing, this book is supposed to be toward teen readers, when in actuality, I think it should be for older range of teenagers. There's extremely strong language, some sexual interaction, and drug dealing. Some of these aren't as bad as others. But this is the reason I thought it should be for 15+. I just think it has a lot of issues that some younger teens may not want to read about. I AM fourteen, but I didn't have much difficulty with dealing with the situations.
As I said, there was close to no romance in this book. *SIGH* But it was still a great read. There was little bit of romance at the end that I could see progressing, but it wasn't until probably the second to last page that you actually saw a relationship bloom from that. But oh wells! What can ya do?
The mystery in this book was fantastic! I may have had a hunch on who the attacker was but when it all folded out I was a little surprised. I did see that some people on Goodreads thought it was easily predicted, but I didn't think so. I guess I'm just clueless. ;)
The only problem I had with this book is sometimes the writing got a little weird. It didn't always seem to flow like it should. But, I live with an author and from her I've learned how to find stuff like that in books, so if you can't then it shouldn't be a problem!
I give this book 4 out of 5 diva crowns! This was an emotional book that really brings up some of the problems in our society. It really opens your eyes. I recommend it to anyone who loves a contemporary mystery.