Friday, April 1, 2011

Review: Shadow Hills by Anastasia Hopcus

Title: Shadow Hills

Author: Anastasia Hopcus

Release Date: 07/13/2010

Publisher: Egmont USA

Pages: 391

Finished Reading: 07/11/2010

Source: I received an ARC of Shadow Hills for review from a contest.

Synopsis (via Goodreads): After her sister Athena's tragic death, it's obvious that grief-stricken Persephone "Phe" Archer no longer belongs in Los Angeles. Hoping to make sense of her sister's sudden demise and the cryptic dreams following it, Phe abandons her bubbly LA life to attend an uptight East Coast preparatory school in Shadow Hills, MA — a school which her sister mysteriously mentioned in her last diary entry before she died.

Once there, Phe quickly realizes that something is deeply amiss in her new town. Not only does Shadow Hills' history boast an unexplained epidemic that decimated hundreds of its citizens in the 1700s, but its modern townies also seem eerily psychic, with the bizarre ability to bend metal. Even Zach — the gorgeous stranger Phe meets and immediately begins to lust after — seems as if he is hiding something serious. Phe is determined to get to the bottom of it. The longer she stays there, the more she suspects that her sister's untimely death and her own destiny are intricately linked to those who reside in Shadow Hills.

In a Sentence: After her sister’s death, Phe Archer goes in search of answers to her cryptic dreams and finds the key to her past.

Overall Rating: 5

Plot Rating: 5

Character Rating: 5

Writing Rating: 5

Review: An excellent debut novel. Anastasia Hopcus has created a completely believable world with characters living just outside the realm of every day society. With a story that draws you in and won't let you go, she has an innate ability to transfer her characters emotions to the readers and make them longing for more. A promising start to what I can only hope will become a series of stories taking us within the world of the Phe, Zach and the rest of Shadow Hills and Devenish Prep.

After her sister's death, Phe decides to go to boarding school at the last place that her sister wrote about in her journal. When she arrives, she quickly makes friends and falls for a strange guy on campus who seems to have the ability to move metal toward him. After a few weird visions (in a basement and the graveyard), Phe seeks help from an old woman in town, who is much more than she first appears. Soon, Phe is unraveling not only the mystery of her past and her sister's death, but also that of the townies and their abilities, all while balancing her new romance with Zach and uncovering his family's secrets.

Cover: The cover is a bit boring and doesn’t really have anything to do with the story.

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