Anne recently lost her parents in a car crash. Now she meets Blake, whose girlfriend recently died. Do their tragedies mean that the two are made for each other?
Anne has moved in with her aunt and uncle and begins to attend a new high school, where Natalie warns her to stay away from Blake. Naturally, she meets Blake almost immediately, and he appears to be attracted to her. With some new friends she goes out with Blake and his friend Jamie, who was with Blake on the night his girlfriend, Cara, drowned. Blake seems great, and Anne feels an affinity—but he begins to behave erratically, suddenly becoming angry and then immediately justifying his actions. Meanwhile, one of Anne’s new friends begins to receive anonymous notes warning her about Jamie. The girls blame Natalie for the notes, but Anne isn’t so sure; she questions Blake closely about Cara’s death. Unsatisfied with his answers, she decides to break it off. A surprise brings events to a head. Deriso builds up readers’ suspicions of Blake effectively, but this remains mostly a psychological exploration of a girl coping with her own tragedy. The story uncovers the mystery with a nice buildup of clues, always keeping the focus on Anne. Deriso provides no ethnic or racial information of substance beyond hair and eye color, leaving readers to infer that Anne and her coterie are all white.
A deftly plotted psychological mystery. (Mystery. 12-18)