Feb 6, 2013

Book Review: Notes from Ghost Town - Kate Ellison

Title: Notes from Ghost Town
Author: Kate Ellison
Release Date: February 12th 2013
Publisher: EgmontUSA
Source: NetGalley
They say first love never dies... 
From critically acclaimed author Kate Ellison comes a heartbreaking mystery of mental illness, unspoken love, and murder. When sixteen-year-old artist Olivia Tithe is visited by the ghost of her first love, Lucas Stern, it’s only through scattered images and notes left behind that she can unravel the mystery of his death. 
There’s a catch: Olivia has gone colorblind, and there’s a good chance she’s losing her mind completely—just like her mother did. How else to explain seeing (and falling in love all over again with) someone who isn’t really there? 
With the murder trial looming just nine days away, Olivia must follow her heart to the truth, no matter how painful. It’s the only way she can save herself.
So apparently I had another attack of "OOOOH PRETTY COVER LET ME SKIP THE BLURB" because what I expected from this was a cheesy and angsty supernatural romance... which was quite not what I got.

Olivia Tithe used to have a good life; she had loving parents, great friends, and outstanding artistic talent. But all of that went down the drain when her schizophrenic mom was discovered with blood in her hands - Lucas Stern's, Olivia's best friend, blood. Now, ten months after the gruesome incident and nine days from her mom's trial, Olivia is haunted by Lucas' ghost, saying her mom is innocent. Adding the ghost with her colorblindness, Olivia's convinced that she's following in her mom's crazy footsteps, but what if she's not?

Olivia wasn't a very likable character for me. I got irritated when she wouldn't quit yapping about Stern's ghost not being real, but considering it could mean she was becoming crazy like her mom, I understood her dilemma. I admired her for being headstrong and making some smart decisions, but she was far from perfect. Aside from estranging her dad, his new fiancee, and Raina, her other best friend, what I really hated was Olivia using Austin Morse, her dad's good friend's son, to forget about Lucas and her other worries. It was really unfair to him.

Speaking of romance, I didn't expect to love Lucas this much. I thought he'd just be the ghost in this story, but he was the one who brought the "no oh god why" feels. He had a great future ahead of him - as in, wow, Juilliard - but it all went to waste because of such meaningless reasons. 

Although the writing was really beautiful, moving, and perfect for such an emotionally-packed story, the plot didn't quite amaze me. It was predictable; around halfway through, I'd already guessed the real culprit. I don't consider this a murder mystery as much as a coming-of-age story, but it was painful and stunning on both accounts.

MY FAVORITE PART was Olivia playing the piano with "someone's" help ♥

(cover and summary from Goodreads.com)

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