Monday, March 7, 2011
This paranormal murder mystery will have teens reading on the edge of their seats.
Clarity "Clare" Fern sees things. Things no one else can see. Things like stolen kisses and long-buried secrets. All she has to do is touch a certain object, and the visions come to her. It's a gift. And a curse.
When a teenage girl is found murdered, Clare's ex-boyfriend wants her to help solve the case - but Clare is still furious at the cheating jerk. Then Clare's brother - who has supernatural gifts of his own - becomes the prime suspect, and Clare can no longer look away. Teaming up with Gabriel, the smoldering son of the new detective, Clare must venture into the depths of fear, revenge, and lust in order to track the killer. But will her sight fail her just when she needs it most? -- Scholastic
One of my unofficial reading goals of 2011 is to read more Young Adult books. I always seem to enjoy books for this age-range, but I find that I end up reading more picture and middle grade books because of the ages of my children. However, as my daughter quickly approaches the age where she will be reading lots of YA books, I've decided that I need to be more vigilant in my effort to read more YA. And that's pretty much how I ended up reading CLARITY by Kim Harrington.
There have been some very good things being said about CLARITY around the blogosphere, but I wanted to see for myself. And I have to say, I adored this book! I'm not usually a big fan of paranormal books, but this book was just terrific -- from the characters, to the mystery, to the romance, and yes... even the paranormal aspects. I actually read it in one sitting because I couldn't put it down.
CLARITY is just a light, fun read -- almost like teen chick lit. But chick lit with a twist because it also is an intriguing murder mystery. When a teenage girl is found dead at a local hotel, the mayor's son (who also happens to be Clare's ex) asks her to help solve the crime by using her psychic powers. As Clare begins investigating the case, clues indicate that her older brother might be involved. Clare is determined to find the murderer and prove her brother's innocence.
As I read CLARITY, I was pretty sure that I had the mystery figured out, but there was a twist at the end which did make things interesting and throw me for a little loop. However, as much as I liked the mystery aspect of the story, I think I most loved the character of Clare. She was just fantastic! She was smart, sweet, and funny (plus she has awesome psychic powers); and I truly think teen girls will relate to her. Clare feels as if she doesn't fit in with the other kids (who hasn't felt that way?), she's been cheated on by her boyfriend (I know I had that happen), and she's still trying to figure out all her feelings about two very different guys (I had that happen too!)
Now, I have to admit that I did find the premise that three teenagers were asked to help the police chief and mayor solve a crime a little hard to believe. (In fact, I accepted the paranormal aspects of the story much more so than this!) But once I let that go, I quickly became caught up how they solved the crime, as well as their potential love triangle. Heck, look at what Nancy Drew and her friends were allowed to do....
After I finished reading CLARITY, I was left wanting more. While Clare managed to solve the murder mystery in this book, there were still some "mysteries" in Clare's personal life that were left hanging. I am extremely curious to how Clare's boyfriend issues play out as well as whether her father will return to the family; and I have a sneaking suspicion that Clare will be asked to work on solving some future crimes as well. I was extremely excited to learn that the second book in the Clarity series will be out in March 2012; and personally, I don't know if I can wait!
I absolutely loved CLARITY and think teen girls are going to agree. Highly recommended!
Thanks to Big Honcho Media for providing me with a copy of this novel.
Giveaway alert: I have two copies of CLARITY to share with two very lucky readers. To enter, just fill out the form below before March 13, 2011 at 11:59 p.m. ET. I will randomly select and notify the winners the following day. This contest is open to those of you with U.S. addresses only. Good luck!