Short version: This book was SO GOOD! You have to read it!! I read it super fast, and got totally entranced with the story. I will definitely be reading the next one, asap! It was written beautifully, too. For a lesser known book/author, I was floored by how professional the storyline and writing were finished (editing too).If you like YA, paranormal books-- you'll love this story.
Some Details: I liked how we get eased into Ariel's character. It wasn't jumbled and forceful and rushed. I like simple beginnings. Perhaps the most moving part (to me) of the entire book was the very beginning. Ariel's short exchange with her best friend Jenna. The directness of the scene--the imagery--all stamped in my mind and my heart. Perhaps it is because I have had a similar exchange with a best friend, a sister, a soulmate. The pain of the exchange was so real it forced me to continue to read. I was invested in the story. I liked that it then fast forwarded to Ariel's state when her friend Jenna subsequently disappeared.
The book has a series of events that kept me interested and amused. I really liked Ariel, for the most part. The only fault I have with this character is the way she was dealing with her experiences/ occurrences that were supernatural. She at first (and for the majority of the time) dismissed them as her imagination. She considered she may be crazy, like her grandmother. She considered them to be ghosts, too. But she never accepted these things in the beginning...and then so abruptly assumed that the things she experienced were indeed ghosts; and that perhaps there was a reason, etc. etc. This sudden shift really bothered me. I think the reason it bothered me so much was because I felt that I was receiving a great understanding of the inner workings of Ariel. Then, for a moment, because of the abrupt change in her beliefs--I felt cheated! Why was I not let in on this change in her opinion? I get very selfish of characters once I'm invested. I want to know all their musings! I can then choose for myself what I think insignificant.
Anyways, that is of little consequence. The book was really good. It keeps you interested. It's unique and well written. You will get ensnared in the story as I did and want to read the second book. A lot happens in this book, but a lot doesn't happen as well. At the end you're left with more questions, but it was a fun ride. :)