19 October 2011

(ARC) YA Book Review: On the Fringe by Courtney King Walker

Release Date: 19 October 2011
Publisher: Lands Atlantic Publishing, Inc.
Source: Around the World ARC Tours

Goodreads description:
Claire is struggling to overcome the murder of her childhood friend and secret crush, Daniel. Everyone else seems to be moving on with their lives, but she's still trying to cope. The fact that she finds herself alone and drowning on her 16th birthday isn't helping. Neither is thinking she sees Daniel's face in murky water as she mysteriously resurfaces. But something happened during those four and a half minutes that will make her realize it was not just her imagination. As Claire and Daniel try to grasp a possible reconnection, other grudge-holding beings have plans of their own. Now, the two of them have to decide if their fleeting relationship is worth the possibility of Claire being trapped on the fringe forever.
My Thoughts...

I went into On the Fringe in the best possible way: with no expectations, pre-conceived notions, or opinions of others.  What I found in this book was a heart-warming story of first love intertwined with an intensely creepy story of revenge. This was really a ghost story like no other and I fell deeply, madly in love with the characters.

Claire = awesome.  I felt an instant connection with her character. Her emotions from the beginning were very raw, very real.  Who can't relate to that first crush that you're totally way to scared to tell (or to even have them figure it out)?  Her depression after his death is very honest and real. She doesn't wallow, but she can't let it go--partially because she never had the opportunity to tell him how she felt...and even no one among the friends and family knows how she really felt/feels.

The alternating POVs in this book were brillantly executed and allow a solid connection with Daniel.  Despite his death early on, I felt very drawn to him.  I loved watching him fall deeper in love with Claire and reliving his memories as he tries to figure out exactly when that switch in his feelings happened.  Done any other way this story probably would have had a feeling of desperate insta-love, but seeing the relationship develop over time, even without the other one knowing, it gave a very real sense of growth and gradual development of feelings.  This was a pair that had been friends forever and that friendship was on the verge of developing into something more.

The storyline is absolutely brilliant, alternating between the romance and the intensely creepy haunting. Claire is in serious danger and the reader has an ever-increasing awareness of just HOW MUCH danger she's in as the story goes on.  The interweaving of these stories is, well, PERFECT.  Throughout the book, you are constantly delving deeper into the story and making intense connections between Daniel's death, his connection to Claire, and her current haunting (you know, besides Daniel).

This is truly a beautiful story of first love and loss.


Michelle Flores said...

Great Review!!! Thanks for sharing.  

Truly Bookish said...

Great review, I have been hearing good things about this book. Will be checking it out!
Truly Bookish

Elizabeth Rodriguez said...

It sound like a really good book, thank you for your review.  I will add to my TBR list!

Reflectionsofabookaholic said...

Sounds great but sad.  I'm adding it to my list.  Thanks!

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