Synopsis from Amazon:
Dying sucks–and high school senior Ember McWilliams knows firsthand. After a fatal car accident, her gifted little sister brought her back. Now anything Ember touches dies. And that, well, really blows.Ember operates on a no-touch policy with all living things–including boys. When Hayden Cromwell shows up, quoting Oscar Wilde and claiming her curse is a gift, she thinks he’s a crazed cutie. But when he tells her he can help control it, she’s more than interested. There’s just one catch: Ember has to trust Hayden’s adopted father, a man she’s sure has sinister reasons for collecting children whose abilities even weird her out. However, she’s willing to do anything to hold her sister’s hand again. And hell, she’d also like to be able to kiss Hayden. Who wouldn’t? But when Ember learns the accident that turned her into a freak may not’ve been an accident at all, she’s not sure who to trust. Someone wanted her dead, and the closer she gets to the truth, the closer she is to losing not only her heart, but her life. For real this time.
I got this book for two reasons: one, it’s written by the same author of the Lux series that I’m obsessed with and two, it was free.
That being said I didn’t love this as much as I loved Armentrout’s other books. It was okay but it wasn’t exactly thrilling and the main character, Emma, annoyed me a little bit.
The story centers around Emma and her sister Olivia who has the ability to bring the dead back to life which comes in handy when their family gets in a car accident and Emma dies. However, bringing Emma back from the dead has it’s consequences. Everything Emma touches dies. Talk about a superpower.
This of course makes life especially difficult for Emma who’s treated as an outcast by her classmates and is only left with her one best friend, Adam, and her little sister, Olivia. She can’t even talk to her mother because ever since the accident her mother believes Emma is dead and has gone into a comatose like state only leaving her room for food and to use the restroom occasionally. Emma is thereby left to take care of herself and her little sister.
Emma’s life is thrown into even more upheaval when she meets Hayden Cromwell who tells her she’s gifted and so is her little sister. Emma has trouble believing her “death curse” is a gift but is thrown into a new world where she’s offered the chance to learn how to control her ability and have a chance a relatively normal life while also living amongst other gifted kids and people she doesn’t trust.
Unfortunately for Emma nothing comes easy and while learning to control her abilities she also has to deal with dead animals popping up in her locker and someone trying to kill her. Again.
This book had a lot of mystery going on although I was very suspicious of the culprit from the beginning and wasn’t exactly surprised by the ending. Of course there’s romance between Emma and Hayden that’s forbidden as all romances are. It found it interesting the twists and turns the book took including the mystery of what really caused the car accident that killed Emma’s father and herself and also what exactly Cromwell (Hayden’s adoptive father) wants with all these kids with special gifts.
Additionally, there’s a lot of typical drama and teenage angst as Emma, Olivia, and their mother (mainly Emma) adjust to their new life.
Overall I didn’t think this novel was fantastic but the love story between Emma and Hayden is cute. I found myself constantly frustrated with Emma however but in her defense she’s definitely goes through a lot and I can understand why she has trouble trusting anyone.
Although the novel seems to have some finality to it I think there could also be a sequel as the novel does leave us with a few unanswered questions. Even so this book came out years ago and is listed as an individual book on Armentrout’s website so a sequel probably won’t be coming, at least not anytime soon. We shall see.
“You quoted Oscar Wilde.” I smiled.
Hayden laughed. “Yeah, that was, like, the height of geekdom.”
“No. It was kind of cool.”
Stars: 3 out of 5. It was good but not spectacular.
Borrow or Buy: Borrow. It’s not worth a second read.