Genre: Romance/Realistic Fiction
# of Pages: 343
Emmy and Oliver were best friends as young children because they lived next door to each other. Then, one day Oliver’s dad kidnapped him after school and life was never the same for either of them. Oliver moved around quite a bit with his father and was led to believe his mother did not want him anymore. Emmy’s parents responded by becoming very overprotective and barely letting her out of their sight. At the beginning of Emmy’s senior year she hears the news she has both wanted and dreaded: Oliver has been found. What will he be like? Will he remember her? Will they still be friends? How will this change everything yet again?
This book was very enjoyable and properly explores the difficulties for both Emmy and Oliver surviving an ordeal like this. Oliver’s emotional health is probably not discussed in as much length as would be realistic, but it is also told through Emmy’s perspective so she wouldn’t necessarily know everything he’s going through. The events of the story eventually build to a head and are resolved very acceptably. The story has an interesting concept, but does not rely on that and instead relies on the fulfilling development of the characters to truly carry the story. Fans of Sarah Dessen will enjoy this title.
# of Pages: 229
RAC Book: Yes
In this sequel to The Mark, Cassie is now living in a new place with a roommate and trying to make it on her own. She has the ability to see marks that mean a person is going to die soon. She has found that if she intervenes it can save a person’s life, but she does not know if it has any negative affects and decides to find out more about her gift. One way she studies death is by working at a funeral home and studying the different ways people handle death. When her roommate informs her of a girl at a nearby mental ward, Cassie begins to wonder if they in fact share the same gift. When she goes to meet with the girl she sees a mysterious boy from her class and begins to wonder about his intentions and motivations. As the two get closer she learns that he may have more to teach her than she thought. Can she trust this mysterious boy, Zander? Are there others out there like her?
Cassie’s gift creates an interesting premise for a book and there are many worthwhile situations that help her better understand how her gift can affect people. One great example is when the father of a classmate dies. There are a few mentions of her past from the first book that may confuse some readers if they have not read it, but the new characters in this book prove to be engaging. The relationship dynamic between Cassie and Zander changes with every revelation they learn about each other, but it is still unclear what their ultimate relationship will be like. Fans of supernatural and fantasy will enjoy the story, but will probably want to start with the first in the series.