Darina is seeing ghosts. Literally. Her recently deceased boyfriend Phoenix is following her around. The doctors say it’s normal to see someone you love, who has recently died, in places that you associate with them. So why does she see him where he has no business being?
Darina stumbled upon the old farmhouse while out for a drive to clear her head. Not only does she find Phoenix there, but she also finds the three other kids form their high school who have died this year and a few others. They are the “Beautiful Dead.” These people have unresolved issues and have been chosen to come back, with phenomenal powers, for one year to clear any misgivings they have with the human world.
Unfortunately, the “Beautiful Dead” cannot do their work on their own. They have chosen to have Darina as their contact with the human world. She will be their eyes and ears and search out the wrong-doings keeping them on Earth. First up is Jonas. He died in a motorcycle accident that they town has labeled as his fault. Jonas knows better and so does the other person who was on the bike at the time. Can Darina unlock the clues in the little amount of time she’s allotted? What does it mean if she succeeds? And what will it cost should she fail?
This fast-paced novel was a roller coaster ride from beginning to end. Honestly, a girl who can see and talk to those beyond the land of the living sounds very mundane, but the powers that they have and the fact that she is still influenced by them is unique. The “Beautiful Dead” don’t want to intentionally harm anyone, they simply want to conceal their existence so that they can get on with their work and move on with their deaths.
Darina is quite fascinating to me because of her unique position. Her deceased boyfriend is “living” still, at least for another year, but yet she has to function in the land of the living with someone tugging her heart strings. She may appear weak at times, but I can’t imagine the strain that she is under dealing with her reality. Most of the other characters remind the reader of the small town mentality that is prevalent when dealing with supernatural elements. Yet some can still surprise you.
I am looking forward to the continuation of this series and the next mystery that Darina must solve.