Goodreads synopsis: From tragedy came power. And from mishandled power came mystery. After moving into a new gated community with her family, Natalie is ready to begin a peaceful year at Emerson High. A year complete with boy troubles, school dances, new friends… everything an average girl could expect.
Then she starts receiving notes warning her not to go to school November first. Notes in her day planner, on a piece of homework, on a homecoming ticket… The more notes she receives the more details she uncovers, and the clearer it becomes: words like peaceful and average are about the worst ones anyone could use to describe the year she’s about to have. Crazy? Maybe. Violent? Definitely. Heart-wrenching, mind-blowing, life-changing?
Well, that remains to be seen. All Natalie knows from the start is that she shouldn’t go to school on November first. And maybe you shouldn’t either.
Title: Ashes to Ashes
Author: Valerie Thomas
Genres: Young Adult, Suspense, Mystery
Source: Copy received from the author in exchange for the honest review.
My rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
ASHES TO ASHES is a story bursting with suspense and mystery that grips the readers from the first page. The book is from the point of view of Natalie, our main female protagonist, who lives in a gated community with her younger brother and her parents. The first scene takes place at a bonfire where we get to meet Natalie, her younger brother Ben and their neighbours Zach and Love. The story continues with slow pace and we get to know more about Natalie and Ben’s life. Ben and Zach seem to hate each other from the first chapter but somehow they form a bond but due to Zach’s weird personality and violent nature, Natalie is often careful around him. Love is a clever and know-it-all character. She always makes Natalie feel like a stupid person and has a perfect remark for everything Natalie says to her. And then there is Natalie who seems like a smart girl but there are moments when she acts unwisely. Over-all Natalie is a strong girl, who always stands her ground whenever it comes to Zach and Love who seem to hate her a lot.
As I mentioned before, the book is full of suspense and I don’t want to spoil anything for those who haven’t read this book yet. So I’ll just give a gist of the story. Apart from Zach and Ben’s fight in the first chapter and Love’s weird behaviour towards Natalie, everything is normal in Natalie’s life. But then one day at her school she starts receiving warning notes to not go to school on November first. Amidst all this, Natalie runs into a boy named Evan. Evan and Natalie eventually become friends and grow close. When these notes start turning Natalie’s life into a turmoil, she decides to find the truth behind them and get to the bottom of the situation once and for all. But slowly and slowly as the truth unfolds, nothing remains same in Natalie’s life.
There are a few parts where the story drags a bit but on the other hand it also makes you desperate for answers. The plot is nicely crafted with suspense and mystery but there are a few things that confuse you. Like Natalie and Ben’s parents. Natalie is the main protagonist, her parents should be an important part of the story, but we don’t get to meet them in the book. Or perhaps, there’s a reason behind that too which hopefully will be revealed in the next instalment. The characters are well thought but there is no development in them with the progression of story and maybe that’s why I couldn’t connect with them. Overall I enjoyed this book. It was intriguing and unique. The plot was not too intense but was gripping, nevertheless. I am very much looking forward to read the next one.
***Thank you, Valerie, for providing me a copy of your book in exchange for the honest review.***
©sakshi~the escapist, 2017