Thursday, July 14, 2011

Review: Ultraviolet by RJ Anderson


"Once upon a time there was a girl who was special. This is not her story. Unless you count the part where I killed her."

Sixteen-year-old Alison wakes up in a mental institution. As she pieces her memory back together, she realizes she's confessed to murdering Tori Beaugrand, the most perfect girl at school. But the case is a mystery. Tori's body has not been found, and Alison can't explain what happened. One minute she was fighting with Tori. The next moment Tori disintegrated--into nothing.

But that's impossible. No one is capable of making someone vanish. Right? Alison must be losing her mind--like her mother always feared she would.

For years Alison has tried to keep her weird sensory abilities a secret. No one ever understood--until a mysterious visiting scientist takes an interest in Alison's case. Suddenly, Alison discovers that the world is wrong about her--and that she's capable of far more than anyone else would believe.

Pages: 306 pages (Hardcover)
Publisher: Carolrhoda Books; 1 edition
Release: September 1st 2011

Alison wakes up in white room with no memory of how she got there and is told that she'll be transferred to Pine Hills, a mental institution for teens. Sure she can taste sound and smell words, but she's kept that to herself. Other than that she's completely sane. The police, the staff at Pine Hills, and her mother and friend don't think so. It's probably because on the night that Tori disappeared, Alison came home covered in blood screaming that she killed Tori. When police tried to apprehend her, she attacked them and attacked herself as well.

The night Tori died is still a mystery to Alison. One minute they were fighting, the next minute Tori disintegrated and hasn't been found since. Even though the situation is completely unbelievable, Alison believes that she's the cause of Tori's disappearance. In fact, she believes she killed her with her mind.

As the novel goes on, we learn more about Alison's rare, but completely human ability (you can even find it on wikipedia). But sadly, that takes up the majority of the novel. I would have liked to hear more about Tori and the mystery surrounding her. We do find out, obviously, but it's rushed. More Tori would have been appreciated.



If you are expecting a supernatural fiction novel, which is what the synopsis kind of tells you, then you might feel disappointed. This isn't supernatural fiction, the beginning is regular teen fiction, but near the end it turns sci-fi. This didn't really bother me and I hope this doesn't deter others from reading this.

I felt like the time spent in Pine Hills did drag on quite a bit, considering that you're expecting to hear more about the mystery. It was interesting though. One of the things that I didn't like was Alison's love interest. As a standalone character, he was alright, but when he’s together with Alison and then they confess their love to each other that was a little off for me. I understood why Alison felt the way she felt, sure it didn’t scream love it was more of confused because you were nice to me when no one else was. But she’s a teen, so it’s normal for her to confuse this feeling with love. Him on the other hand, it never rang true with me.

Ultraviolet did take me a few days to finish, but every time I picked up my iPod to read this I did get hooked. There are a lot of good points in this novel and I could see this turning into a series, but also some things that I didn't quite like. Overall, this was a fun and very different read so I enjoyed it.

3.5 stars

This book was provided by net galley

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