Blur #1, a clear winner in YA Thriller Fiction

blurWhen recently deceased Emily starts appearing to Daniel Byers at funerals and football games, Daniel assumes what any teenager would: he’s going insane. But the nightmares (daymares?) don’t stop, and he’s driven to find out what really happened to Emily. How did a girl who was a strong swimmer drown? And why did her ghost tell him to find her glasses? And why is the new girl, Stacy, avoiding him? And why is he, a healthy, athletic high school boy, suddenly getting headaches and passing out?

Steven James crafts a tale that is mystery, thriller, and paranormal all rolled into one. He keeps readers guessing about who-done-it, what’s up with the new girl, and what is happening to Daniel. In my experience, a lot of books that deal with a character suddenly having visions usually choose a kid who is already an outsider or someone who is considered weird. But James chooses the high school quarterback, a high-profile boy if ever there was one, and the son of the local sheriff as his protagonist. I liked that he used a character who would be in the limelight, whose sudden oddness would not go unnoticed.

Though there were a few things I found hard to believe (Daniel told way too many people about his visions, and his investigation into Emily’s death seemed a bit too easy), I liked the characters and the overall story that James created. I would have liked more resolution or at least dialogue at the end between Daniel and his father. That was a situation that needed some conversation. I won’t unleash a spoiler, but what happened between them at the end deserved some ink, in my opinion. I would’ve liked a deeper exploration of Daniel’s sudden visions, but since this is a series perhaps that will come in the next book.

Overall, a good read. A different read. I will definitely add Daniel’s future adventures and visions to my to-read list.

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