Review written by Georgina TranterPublished - March 2012 HarperCollins Children's Books
Pages - 256
I’m slumped at my desk, fighting to keep my eyes open. A drop of sweat meanders down my back. It’s got to be eighty-five degrees in here, though it’s only October. When we complained, Mrs. Winger mumbled something about waiting for a custodian to come fix the thermostat.
Beside me, hunched over his desk, Icky Ferris stumbles over the words in Julius Caesar. We’re supposed to be reading in partners – but his monotonous tone, paired with the unintelligible Shakespearean language that gets English teachers all hot and bothered, makes me feel unbearably sleepy.
Vee Bell hates having narcolepsy.
But collapsing at school is nowhere near as bad as the truth. When Vee passes out she slides randomly into other people’s heads and ends up seeing through their eyes. Then Vee finds herself in the head of a killer, standing over the body of a dead cheerleader, and she’s beyond freaked.
Vee knows that this was no suicide. And when another cheerleader turns up dead, everyone is a suspect. Struggling to understand her terrifying and unwanted ‘gift’, Vee is tangled in a web of secrets, lies and danger…
***********Vee, the central character, suffers from narcolepsy which means she cannot control herself falling asleep at any time of the day or night. The thing that makes this more dramatic for her is that if she has something on her possession that belongs to another person, for example clothing or jewellery, she can transfer herself into their heads. This really sounds so totally over-the-top and implausible that I really thought this book wouldn’t work out. I’m glad to say that I was wrong.
Whilst it might not sound believable, I never for one moment doubted this book. The central character Vee, is a high-school student living with her father and younger sister. She used to be part of the popular kids at school but her narcolepsy singles her out and she is no longer part of the inner circle of students which includes her younger sister Mattie. With her dyed pink hair and penchant for 90s indie rock bands, Vee doesn’t need to be made any more weird by disclosing her unique ‘talent’.
When the first murder occurs, everyone believes it to be a suicide but Vee is the only one who knows the truth. She realises that no one would believe her if she said what she had seen, so tries to find out who the killer is by sliding into them while she sleeps. Could it be her male best friend Rollins who has been acting ‘kinda weird’ lately, or is it the gorgeous new-boy Zane who has developed quite an interest in Vee? Then again, it could be teacher Mr Golden, who clearly has some secrets of his own?
This is not your typical high school novel but it flows easily and I finished it over a weekend. It’s also not a book for girls or boys - there are enough characters and plot strength for it to appeal to most teenagers. It’s also not gory in its descriptions so suitable for younger teenagers. If anything, the cover is scarier than the book! I had my suspicions but despite all the crime novels I read I still didn’t quite work out whodunit! Definitely worth a read!