by Strange Chemistry
Sixteen year old Taylor Oh is cursed: if she is touched by the ghost of a murder victim then they pass a mark beneath her skin. She has three weeks to find their murderer and pass the mark to them – letting justice take place and sending them into the Darkness. And if she doesn’t make it in time? The Darkness will come for her…
She spends her life trying to avoid ghosts, make it through school where she’s bullied by popular Justin and his cronies, keep her one remaining friend, and persuade her father that this is real and that she’s not going crazy.
But then Justin is murdered and everything gets a whole lot worse. Justin doesn’t know who killed him, so there’s no obvious person for Taylor to go after. The clues she has lead her to the V Club, a vicious secret society at her school where no one is allowed to leave… and where Justin was dared to do the stunt which led to his death.
Can she find out who was responsible for his murder before the Darkness comes for her? Can she put aside her hatred for her former bully to truly help him?
And what happens if she starts to fall for him?
Let me first just start off by saying how refreshing it was to have a lead character who was racially diverse. Taylor, as you can see from this GORGEOUS cover, is Asian. Because of this fact, and her whole weirdness factor from seeing ghosts, she is bullied relentlessly at her school by this group of kids. And their ringleader is Justin. But when Justin dies, after a short period of being a jackass- no surprise there- that is all he ever was in real life- he lets her help him. Well, first he accidentally touches her and gives her the mark, so that she had to help him. No matter how much she should have just let him suffer- which that asshat deserved- she had to help him or her life was in danger.
I HATED Justin. Capital H- HATED. HE was so horrible in the beginning for absolutely no solid reason that I found it difficult to believe the romantic connection later on in the book. I mean... after following him around for one day, Taylor is all.. he is sooo handsome BUT I HATE HIM. YEP, YEP HATE HIM. *sigh* But of course that didn't last long. He starts being nice to her and acting like he cares. News to Taylor- The whole book felt like he was being nice/romantic to her BECAUSE she was the only person who could see him. He had a girlfriend he "loved" who helped him bully Taylor. I am sorry. That just fell flat for a love story to me. Other people may be able to look past what he did to her before.. but I just can't he was so cruel and hateful to her for YEARS and for a really stupid ass reason.
The whole concept of a game of truth or dare leading to something more sinister and outright putting students in danger seems a little far- fetched. Why would joining this stupid underground club get you connections for when you grow up. I just can't see it. Maybe I was misreading it or something. I have some friends who loved the book- really. I just don't know.
I love love love love loved however... the concept. The first few pages when I was reading over what Taylor has to do and why, I was intrigued. She is a troubled girl who has to deal with so much and her life is constantly put in danger to help ghosts she wants nothing to do with. And she has problems with her father. Also, I love the blackness that takes the killers away. That part of the story was awesome! O.O And the parts with her father were emotional and I give them a thumbs up as well.
I just... couldn't get past the bullied girl whose life was put through absolute hell falling in love with her tormentor. I mean, it is an original concept and I give it points for that. Just... maybe if he had not been a hateful bully and did not have a silly reason for doing what he did. The whole underground club thing in the school was cool, too. It just fell a bit flat for me in some areas. *shrug* No big.
Loved the concept, though. And adore the cover.