Author: Rachel Ward
Genre: Young Adult
Release Date: 02/01/10
Ever since she was child, Jem has kept a secret: Whenever she meets someone new, no matter who, as soon as she looks into their eyes, a number pops into her head. That number is a date: the date they will die. Burdened with such awful awareness, Jem avoids relationships. Until she meets Spider, another outsider, and takes a chance. The two plan a trip to the city. But while waiting to ride the Eye ferris wheel, Jem is terrified to see that all the other tourists in line flash the same number. Today's number. Today's date. Terrorists are going to attack London. Jem's world is about to explode!
Plot: 2 Stars
The plot could've been fantastic. Seeing the date that any person you make eye contact with will die seemed like such a great plot point. But in the end, for me, it just didn't play the part I wanted it to. This was a Contemporary Young Adult novel with slight psychic overtones, whereas I thought it was going to be a cool Urban Fantasy Young Adult novel. The running away and hiding out also isn't a plot point I often enjoy, and nothing about this novel really stood out for me.
Pace: 2 Stars
Everything seemed to take a bit too long to happen, and as a result, the novel seemed to drag as I was reading. I personally didn't need to know every detail while Jem and Spider were on the run, because it got a bit boring and repetitive.
Characters: 1.5 Stars
I didn't really connect with Jem or Spider. Instead of saying, "Even though my childhood was bad, I'm gonna rise up and be the best I can" they both just kind gave up on themselves. They let society's assumptions come true and I just wanted them to be a bit more motivated. I did like Spider's Nan though, and I wish we could've seen more of her.
Cover: 2.5 Stars
The cover was OK. I liked how the number theme transferred to the pages when chapters started and the embossing on the cover. But the eye was just a little creepy to me. Maybe if the iris was a natural color and not blood red. Altogether though, it just wasn't very eye-catching.
Overall: 2 Stars
Disclosure: I received my copy for review from Big Honcho Media and Scholastic.