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Month in review

Reviews
Avatar: The Last Airbender: The Promise by Gene Luen Yang
Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey
Chi's Sweet Home 02 by Kanata Konami
Dear Tabby by Carolyn Crimi
Doctor Who: The Forgotten by Tony Lee
Empire State: A Love Story (or Not) by Jason Shiga
The Eternal Hourglass by Erica Kirov
Gem by Holly Hobbie
The Honeybee Man by Lela Nargi
The Last Suppers (audio) by Diane Mott Davidson
The Locket by Stacey Jay
Lunch Lady and the League of Librarians by Jarrett J. Krosoczka
Keeper by Kathi Appelt
On a Windy Night by Nancy Raines Day
One Of Those Days by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
Piece of Mind by Rob Reger
The Pinhoe Egg by Diana Wynne Jones
Plant a Kiss by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
Red Cat, Blue Cat by Jenni Desmond
Ribbit Rabbit by Candace Ryan
Shadow Hills by Anastasia Hopcus
The Shadows by Jacqueline West
Son of Slappy by R.L. Stine
Sophie and the Next-Door Monsters by Chris Case
Soulless by Gail Carriger
Stuck on Earth by David Klass
To Dance: A Ballerina's Graphic Novel by Siena Cherson Siegel
The Wedding Officer by Anthony Capella
Wednesdays in the Tower by Jessica Day George
Who's There? by Carole Lexa Schaefer

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8




Shadow Hills: 03/28/13

cover art

Shadow Hills by Anastasia Hopcus is a YA paranormal mystery. Persephone "Phe" Archer leaves Los Angeles to enroll in an uptight Massachusetts boarding school. She goes, plagued by grief over the death of her sister, and haunted by dreams that might be clues to her sister's death.

Devinish Prep is situated in a rather secluded town (aren't they always?) with a checkered past. A plague of some sort killed off a large percentage of the population, leaving a small set of survivors who all have something in common. That event is continuing to effect events in both the town and the school.

Phe quickly makes friends — the wealthy, alcoholic, shopoholic and fashion obsessed Adriana Dolski and the mysterious, Marty-Stu named Zach. It was in the initial introductions of these characters that I lost interest in the book. Whilst there is a mysterious hidden library and a creepy old hospital on the hill, Phe instead drinks cocktails and goes on a shopping spree with her new buddies.

These scenes of Phe and her new friends highlight the weaknesses of Shadow Hill. The BIG events are lost in an endless stream of minutae — descriptions of Phe doing completely mundane things are given the same emphasis (and sometimes more!) than the key pieces of the book (like discovering the history of the town or investigating the hidden library).

Two stars

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