Tuesday, July 5, 2011
by Alyxandra Harvey
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published June 21st 2011 by Walker Childrens
Placement in the Pile: Reaching New Heights
Violet Willoughby doesn't believe in ghosts. But they believe in her.
After spending years participating in her mother's elaborate ruse as a fraudulent medium, Violet is about as skeptical as they come in all matters supernatural. Now that she is being visited by a very persistent ghost, one who suffered a violent death, Violet can no longer ignore her unique ability. She must figure out what this ghost is trying to communicate, and quickly because the killer is still on the loose.
Afraid of ruining her chance to escape her mother's scheming through an advantageous marriage, Violet must keep her ability secret. The only person who can help her is Colin, a friend she's known since childhood, and whom she has grown to love. He understands the true Violet, but helping her on this path means they might never be together. Can Violet find a way to help this ghost without ruining her own chance at a future free of lies?
I was instantly drawn into this Victorian world of Spiritualism, skeptics, romance, class differentiations, and secret romance. Alyxandra Harvey weaves the historical nearly perfectly with the supernatural. Her era is spot on, her ghosts disturbingly believable.
I really enjoyed Violet's character and voice. She was strong from the start, she knew what she wanted, but was a bit helpless to change it. Her mother, a false medium, had raised her to be an actress, a fake, and she never wanted that. Then when her own real medium powers show up, it is nothing less than frightening.
This book is definitely worth reading. I always love a good historical fiction, and I love paranormal books as well. It was a perfect blend. Was it perfect? No, there were some cliche characters, some predictable moments etc. But in the end those minor things didn't matter so much, because I was just enjoying the story.