May’s trip to Florence with family friends takes a frightening turn when she wakes in the middle of the night to find her ghostly twin standing at the foot of her bed.
Determined to forget her parents’ divorce and their request that she decide with whom to spend her senior year of high school, May travels with her childhood friend, Liam, and his travel-writer mother, Gwen. But her study of history becomes supernatural when her ethereal doppelganger appears, inviting her back in time. May becomes a ghostly version of herself as Cristofana leads her through a time portal into the middle of the Black Death. However, when Cristofana slips back into the future, May is left very human and very vulnerable in the past. Clever and dangerous, Cristofana lures May away from her life using Marco, a handsome artist. Historical details, opulent settings and awakening passions paint a rich landscape. The gritty reality of pre-Renaissance life comes alive set against the relative ease of modern times. Unfortunately, the setting is the star, overshadowing the characters. Noyes’ story lacks mystery and dread, becoming more a study of the Middle Ages than an evocative ghost story.
An informative tale, but it lacks spark. (Ghost story. 14 & up)