Shade – Jeri Smith-Ready

 Shade by Jeri Smith Ready. Published by Simon Pulse  $5.69 CDN Amazon Hardcover.  $10.99 CND Kindle edition

I have to start off by saying ‘Wow’.  I can’t believe how much I loved this book.  The book takes place in a time after ‘the shift’ in which everyone born after this event can literally see ghosts who have unfinished business and remain on earth to fix something.  There are also Shades, ghosts that get so bitter and twisted that they turn bad, thus become dangerous to post shifters. 

I loved the originality of the story in that every person born after the shift can see ghosts.  It is pure genius how she creates the post shift world that includes ‘black boxes’ that keep ghosts out of certain places, the color red that repels them, lawyers that sue on their behalf, and the government agency that is created to study and capture them if necessary, recruiting post shifters to help them.  She leaves nothing out.  You can sink your head into the story and it becomes believable. 

The main character Aura is 16 and a shifter.  At the beginning of the story you are entangled into the relationship between her and her boyfriend Logan.  At the height of their relationship Logan is suddenly killed leaving Aura devastated.  However, since Aura is a shifter and Logan remains behind as a ghost, their relationship continues, albeit a bit twisted.

Aura has never understood why she and others like her can see ghosts.  Aura always thought it was annoying to have ghosts hounding her but now that Logan is a ghost she will do whatever she can to keep him with her. 

I don’t want to give too much of the story away but suffice it to say that this story packs a wallop of a punch.  I couldn’t put it down.  The reader is so intricately woven into the story that I needed to know more and more.  Each new piece of the puzzle left me on the edge wanting to find out more. 

The characters were believable and stayed true to form.  You instantly felt sorry for Aura and her predicament, even when a new love interest, Zachary shows up.  The author does an amazing job of staying inside Aura’s head sweeping the reader up in the compelling drama of Aura’s need to do whatever she can to keep Logan.  

The only thing that gave me any pause was that the reason for the ‘shift’ was never revealed.  I kept waiting for the explanation; however about half way through I realized that it was part of the intrigue of the story.  The characters don’t have an explanation either, not even the government agency responsible for policing ghosts and shades. 

Definitely 5 stars for me.

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