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- Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
- Publication date: 9/18/2012
- Pages: 312
- Source: ARC provided by the publisher for review
Dying sucks--and high school senior Ember McWilliams knows firsthand. After a fatal car accident, her gifted little sister brought her back. Now anything Ember touches dies. And that, well, really blows.
Ember operates on a no-touch policy with all living things--including boys. When Hayden Cromwell shows up, quoting Oscar Wilde and claiming her curse is a gift, she thinks he’s a crazed cutie. But when he tells her he can help control it, she’s more than interested. There’s just one catch: Ember has to trust Hayden's adopted father, a man she's sure has sinister reasons for collecting children whose abilities even weird her out. However, she’s willing to do anything to hold her sister's hand again. And hell, she'd also like to be able to kiss Hayden. Who wouldn't?
But when Ember learns the accident that turned her into a freak may not've been an accident at all, she’s not sure who to trust. Someone wanted her dead, and the closer she gets to the truth, the closer she is to losing not only her heart, but her life. For real this time.
Like all of Jennifer L. Armentrout's books, when I heard about this I was dying to get my hands on it. I will read anything and everything that she writes. She is so amazing with her story telling and making you really feel the characters. Only a few chapters into the book I was already was completely invested in Ember and was feeling her emotions along with her. I was captivated with the story and couldn't stop. I had to know what was going on and how everything would turn out. Of course, I figured out some of it pretty early on, but there was still enough mystery left to keep me thoroughly intrigued.
Ember is cursed with the touch of death. I instantly felt bad for her hearing about how she came to be that way and figured out that she couldn't touch anything living. On top of that, her mother is pretty useless and unresponsive and just stays in bed, so Ember is the sole care giver to her little sister Olivia. Talk about a difficult situation. She really is a tough chick though and deals with it very well. Thrown into an even worse situation, Ember doesn't know who she can trusts or if she can even trust anyone. She really wants to trust Hayden, he is the only one who is really there for her. She is bullied and treated horribly by just about everyone and it was very emotional going through all of it with her. I could feel my heart breaking along with hers, feel the anger at everyone building. As tough as Ember is, she is still a human being with real feelings, and it's hard to see people treat her like she's nothing.
The romance in this book is really sweet. I totally loved Hayden, even when I wasn't quite sure what his motives were. He was almost impossible to not like. He is a bit moody, but as I leaned more about him, I understood. He wants to help Ember. He doesn't think that she is cursed at all, but believes she has a gift. He believes that she can control it and spends a lot of time helping her. It's not just about controlling her gift though. He truly does care about her. Even when he is being a bit of a jerk, you know that he does. I really loved how they slowly get to know each other. It's very gradual and realistic. They don't just instantly fall in love. Done in true JLA form, there is plenty of tension and build up. You feel their chemistry, and oh, man is there tons of it. And the fact that Ember can't touch anything living really adds to it!!
This was a page turner. I needed to know where the story was going. I wanted to believe that not all of the characters that I disliked were really bad guys. I hoped that Ember would be able to control her touch of death and finally get some sort of happiness out of life. This was a great book. I loved the pacing and how we get to know the characters and situations. This book held my interest all the way to the last page! Another wonderful book from Jennifer. 4.5 out of 5 stars