Saturday, January 19, 2013

The Suburban Strange Review

TITLE: The Suburban Strange
AUTHOR: Nathan Kotecki
PUBLISHER: Houghton Mifflin
PAGES: 368

BACK COVER BLURB: Celia Balaustine would have arrived at Suburban High for her sophmore year in no better shape than when she'd left her old school: with little confidence, no style, and a sketchbook for her closest companion. But for reasons she can't fathom, she is adopted by the Rosary, a mysterious group of sophisticated friends, and is initiated into a darkly beautiful world of alternative music, fashion, art, and literature. And when she meets Tomasi, an enigmatic boy at the nightclub she attends with the Rosary, for the first time she dares to think of romance.

But Celia discovers that nothing is quite right at Suburban. Mysterious things keep happening. Accidents plague girls on the eve of their sixteenth birthday. Tomasi has a way of appearing and disappearing. Celia's not sure who she can turn to for help, as no one else seems to notice the unexplainable things going on around her.

Soon Celia is inexorably drawn into a twisted conflict between good and evil that hides in plain sight.  At Suburban High everyone's a little strange, but being Kind or Unkind may mean the difference between life and death.

Natah Kotecki's imaginative world building and his authentic portrayal of teenage concerns coalesce to create a truly suspenseful supernatural coming-of-age debut novel in this first installment of the dynamic Suburban Strange series.

OVERALL IMPRESSION: I really enjoyed this book a lot. It had a great balance between the intense, exciting parts and the normal everyday teenager troubles that everyone faces. 

I felt like all of the pieces of this book were slowly trying really hard to come together in my mind as the story went on, but I just couldn't figure it out. It was a "work-out" for my brain. It was fun and I enjoyed trying to figure out who was responsible and what was going to happen next. 

The book had a great ending. Things were cleared up and resolved, but also left in a great place for a sequel.

There's an author's note at the back of the book that says the chapter titles are all album names, so I will be researching a little bit and checking that out to see if I can discover some new music.

CHARACTERS: There are lots of great characters in this book. Celia is your typical girl who doesn't feel like she fits in anywhere, until she finds her place. My favorite character is Tomasi. I hated the parts of the book where he was nowhere to be found as I wanted to read more about him and learn more about his story.

COVER: The cover of this book is a little weird for me. I'm not a huge fan of it. It's not something that pulls me in and makes me want to pick up the book to find out more about it. 

**I received an ARC of this book from Amazon Vine for my honest review.

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