A teenage girl gets clues from her dead best friend that help solve his murder in this soapy paranormal romance.
When Olivia Tithe, 16, kissed her childhood friend, Lucas Stern, the whole world went gray. Her sudden colorblindness foreshadowed a horrific event: A week after the kiss, piano prodigy Stern was murdered, and Olivia’s schizophrenic mother was accused of the crime. Now, as her mother’s sentencing date approaches, Stern appears to Olivia as a ghost to declare her mother’s innocence. Unfortunately, he can’t quite remember who did him in, so Olivia begins investigating. Even though friend Raina and new crush Austin offer to help, Olivia is terrified to tell them about Stern’s ghost lest they believe she has inherited her mother’s illness. Olivia uncovers shady connections to her real estate mogul father’s vacant new condo development (which she dubs Ghost Town) and finds out that her mother’s original lawyer committed suicide. When the supernatural trail leads to the real killer, Olivia has to decide if she is willing to risk her own life to save her mother’s. Though the clues come about a bit too conveniently, Ellison’s lush, occasionally overwrought writing will leave romance fans swooning, especially after one scene that reads like a homage to the movie Ghost—except instead of a pottery wheel, it’s Stern’s piano.
Sudsy but satisfying. (Paranormal romance. 14 & up)