Sunday, October 18, 2009

young adult book review: fade by lisa mcmann

Background: I really enjoyed the first book in this series, Wake, and my one complaint was that there wasn't enough of the story; I wanted more. Thankfully, I discovered Lisa McMann's book late enough that the sequel was already out (book three, Gone, will be published in February 9, 2010.)

Because this book is the second in a series, there may be some spoilers for the first novel. Please feel free to skip ahead to my review.

Summary: The book opens happily: Janie and Cabel are happy and have settled into a high school, virginal version of domestic bliss. Their relationship still must be a secret, but they're happy and supportive of each other. They're both still working undercover for the police, and this case is intense: the cops received two calls, six months apart, on a high school-specific hotline about teachers having sex with students. With no details to go on, Janie and Cabel try to figure out if its true, and if so, who the offending teacher is. Cabel struggles watching Janie put herself at risk to catch the bad guy.

Review: I loved Wake, but Fade is better. If you're faint of heart, be warned, this novel is as naughty as the average episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Translation: this novel addresses sexual predators (the teacher preying on an 18-year-old student variety) in a very real way. I found myself drawn to Janie more and more as a character and as an inspiration. She is strong, physically and mentally, beyond her years. As an adult reader, this novel felt much more mature to me than Wake did. McMann is still true to her characters, but they are hardly living in a young adult world. Watching Janie come to grips with dream catching was tremendously emotional. Needless to say, I cannot wait to see how Janie's life is going when Gone comes out next year (Given its publication date is two days after my wedding, I think you all know an ARC for the honeymoon would be delightful!)

Rating: 5 stars (out of 5 stars) - read it (first, read Wake) now!
Pages: 248
Publication date: February 10, 2009
Source: my local public library

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