A formulaic forbidden-love story and teen debut featuring [insert female name:] Lenzi, who [insert paranormal gift:] serves as a conduit for ghosts with unresolved issues, and [insert male name:] Alden, the guy she wants but shouldn’t have.
When Houston teen, origami-loving Lenzi, begins experiencing hallucinations and disembodied voices, she’s sure that she’s succumbing to the same schizophrenia that recently claimed her father’s life, until Alden unexpectedly arrives. The 17-year-old should remember Alden and the last time she died, in the Galveston hurricane of 1900; after all, their souls have been cycling together for generations. But somehow she’s developed past-life amnesia. Reminiscent of Lauren Kate’s Fallen series and Alyson Noël’s Immortals series, the story builds slowly as Alden, who can (get ready to swoon, romantics) feel Lenzi’s soul respond to emotion, explains their roles as paired Protector and Speaker in helping Hindered spirits pass on to the next world. The only real action occurs when the pair battles Hindereds who have turned into Malevolents, including a court-martialed Civil War soldier still bent on revenge for Lenzi’s deception in a past life. As she struggles to recall her past life and understand her current role, Lenzi must also reconcile her feelings for Alden and both their previous platonic, work-only relationship and the strict demands on their gifts.
Lingering threads suggest a sequel, but isn’t that part of the formula? (Paranormal romance. 14-18)