Sunday, February 17, 2013

The Dead And Buried by Kim Harrington

Title: The Dead And Buried
Author: Kim Harrington 
Genre: Young Adult/Paranormal 
Publisher: Scholastic Point 
Number of Pages: 304
Source: Netgalley 

A haunted house, a buried mystery, and a very angry ghost make this one unforgettable thriller. Jade loves the house she's just moved into with her family. She doesn't even mind being the new girl at the high school: It's a fresh start, and there's that one guy with the dreamy blue eyes. . . . But then things begin happening. Strange, otherworldly things. Jade's little brother claims to see a glimmering girl in his room. Jade's jewelry gets moved around, as if by an invisible hand. Kids at school whisper behind her back like they know something she doesn't. Soon, Jade must face an impossible fact: that her perfect house is haunted. Haunted by a ghost who's seeking not just vengeance, but the truth. The ghost of a girl who ruled Jade's school — until her untimely death last year. It's up to Jade to put the pieces together before her own life is at stake. As Jade investigates the mystery, she discovers that her new friends in town have more than a few deep, dark secrets. But is one of them a murderer

This is the second book I've read this year by Scholastic Point, and it's the second one that has had a lot of cliche plots in it. the cliched plots in this one were:
  •  A Love Triangle (Popular guy vs. loner)
  • Heroine who is misunderstood by her family 
  • Heroine with a dead mother who grapples with her fathers choice of a new mom 
  • Doesn't fit in at school 
  • Heroine has one friend 

Just once in these teen books I'd like to see a heroine who has a lot of friends and is involved in school activities. Why must there always be a love triangle?  Is there no other way to create drama?  I guess not, but you know what? Like Spellbinding, I enjoyed this one. I would have loved it even more without the love triangle between Kane and Donovan. The love triangle was a given, as both were close to Kayla, the girl who was killed in Jades house the year before.  But still, I thought that Jade's relationship with Kane was a bit predictable, and you just knew that his fate wouldn't end well. That being said, I was surprised by the twists and turns that happened in this book with the triangle, and even the mystery itself--I guessed who the murderer was at the halfway point, but much to my surprise I didn't get upset that that Jade hadn't figured it out yet.  

Even with all the cliches mentioned before, this book had a lot of potential and things that made it stand out from other YA books. Jade's hobby was gemstones. I loved learning about what each one meant, and why she had her hobby.  I loved that Donovan noticed that she wore a different one every day and wanted to know what it meant.  Donovan was really the best thing about this book. He had the typical teen angst and had the misfortune of being the police and everyone at schools main suspect in Kayla's death which made him an outcast at school. Despite everyone thinking he killed Kayla, Jade doesn't think he did and he understands and listens to her about all the crazy things happening in her house. They work together to find out what happened to Kayla. Their suspects are:

  • Kane:  Kaylas best guy friend who wanted to be more
  • Faye:  Kayla's best girl friend who was always in her shadow
  • Alexa: The Overachiever 
  • Mr. Tucker:  The creepy next door neighbor 

To find out what happened to Kayla, Jade uses her new girl status and every ones intrigue about her house to worm her way into Kayla's old group of friends (which includes Kane and Faye) and finds out that while Kayla was super popular, she wasn't well liked and wasn't afraid to use the power of her popularity to get what she wanted.   While I wasn't thrilled with Jade getting into Kaylas old group of friends, I did like her trying to find out if Mr. Tucker who watched everything going on in the neighborhood could have done it-mainly because Donovan helped her out with it, and I can't help it, during these times he just pulled at my heartstrings. He won me over because he was realistic-he was trying to move on with his life, but was still struggling over everything that happened with Kayla.

So while this book was a bit predictable it was another enjoyable fast read for me. Honestly, even with all of it's problems I can't wait to read more by Kim Harrington. It was just nice to read a teen book that was a bit different plot wise.