November 26, 2007


Adrienne Maria Vrettos

pub. Margaret K. McElderry, 272 pp

Set in a semi-isolated mountain town that is being overrun by outsiders, this is the tail of 15 year old Dylan, a girl both blessed and cursed with psychic visions. What Dylan sees are visions of dead children who have been killed, either accidentally or by foul play, and have yet to be found. These visions started in the fifth grade when a classmate was murdered by the mysterious “Drifter.”

While Dylan has ‘extra’ knowledge of the events surrounding the murder, it is through the shared experience of a classmate’s disappearance, that Dylan and her friends have forged their bonds. Over time, though, and despite all they share, Dylan has had to keep this biggest of secrets from all those she holds dear.

When newcomer Cate moves into town and befriends Dylan, however, longstanding relationships begin to change. Also thrown into the mix is a new murder linked to the very same Drifter who has haunted the kid’s past.

This book was definitely a page turner. By using the shared stories and remembrances of the kid’s past set against a world beset with change – in the name of progress – Vrettos creates a very well defined sense of place. The Drifter’s return and Dylan’s need to both keep and tell her secret add sufficient tension to keep this story humming along.

While I did enjoy the ride, unfortunately I found quite a few places where the narrative jumped a bit too quickly and I lost the thread of what was going on. Because of this, I often found myself turning back a few pages in order to make sense of what I had just read.

Despite these shortcomings, and I could have just been too tired or reading too quickly to pick up on some things, the book was a lot of fun and good night’s entertainment.

3halfstar 3.5


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