Author: Amanda Marrone
Published Date: September 2009
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Price: Amazon ($9.99)
Megan’s twin sister Remy died in an accident nine years ago, and she’s been haunting her ever since. Knowing how crazy that sounds, Megan keeps this secret to herself and tries to lead a normal life. But when she takes a summer job at Land of Enchantment to keep an eye on her new boyfriend and his lovesick best friend, Samantha, she meets fellow employee Luke who can see Remy, too. Things get even twistier because Megan’s new friend Ari is sporting a massive crush on Luke, who seems to be developing a massive crush on Megan…making for a love triangle that’s positively possessed. Megan wants to keep her distance from Luke, but when Remy’s visions get crazy violent; she knows she needs his help. Because someone’s definitely in danger...the only question is who?
I am still reeling from the horror factors of the book. I finished this book in one sitting and the unique twist Marrone takes with Snow White made me turn the pages as I waited for the resolution. The unique perspective Marrone takes with the happy fairly tales that Disney created create this horrifying tale of jealousy.
At first when I picked up this book, I expected it to be shallow (even though the cover was contrary) and more focused on the romantic aspect of Megan’s life. Since the last supernatural book I read was Give Up the Ghost, I expected something similar to it in focusing more on the psychological and thematic aspect. But, was I in for a surprise! The horror Marrone depicts through her detailed descriptions of the vision of the dead girl and the mystery she surrounds it with made me turn the pages. However, the downside to having ten different situations occurring at the same time leaves you in a “What just happened state?” There were three different plots occurring at one time, the crazed visions Remy was showing, the strained relation between Megan and her mother, and the love, how do we call it, pentagon. Sometimes, the three plots create confusion as Marrone flits back and forth, but the overall effect, as it kept the plot moving, was addicting.
However, I felt the plot’s fast paced speed kept it from developing the characters. Sometimes, and maybe it just reminds me too much of my annoying sister, Remy became way too childish for me to handle. Sure, I understand she’s a seven year old. But her temper tantrums, from the nursing home incident to the time Luke’s grandmother tries to speak to her, get a little annoying as I get more and more sympathetic toward Megan and the stress she feels. I also wanted Luke’s character to be developed more, rather than the "nice" guy (He kisses Megan even though he knows she has a boyfriend. Where is his time for "jealous revenge"?).
Even though the characters could have been developed more by playing on the reader’s emotions, I thought Marrone did a great job on intertwining the horror effect, the fairy tale, and the themes of jealousy (I actually think that I would rather not have mind-reading power) and death.
I am a shameless to say but the cover was the first attraction to the book. The stark contrast of the red makeup formed Megan into a player and created a breathtaking beautiful woman, but also an evil edge to it. I also loved the color contrast between the dark dress and the green apple, representing Snow White. Overall, the color scheme was superb.