Author: Jennifer Sommersby
Release Date: March 25th, 2011
Summary via Goodreads:
Her mom is dead.
Ghosts follow her around.
Her best friend is an elephant.
And she’s about to meet the biggest game changer of all: a boy. With a secret.
When circus-dwelling Gemma Flannery learns she will be attending public school for the first time in her seventeen years, little does she know that fitting in with her 12th-grade classmates will be the least of her concerns. A pro at hiding her knack for seeing the dead (“shades”), Gemma is grieving the recent suicide of her mentally ill mother, a process eased by the introduction of her first real love interest, the charming and painfully handsome Henry Dmitri, who is harboring his own collection of dangerous secrets. Together, they will be presented with a frightening challenge: to assume their roles as heirs to a 3000-year-old magical text, the AVRAKEDAVRA, a book the über-rich, sleight-of-being master Lucian Dmitri would do anything to get his hands on. As each terrifying layer in her new reality melts away, Gemma unearths truths that her quiet, nomadic life with the Cinzio Traveling Players is not at all what she’d always cherished. Gemma and Henry must rely on each other to stop Lucian’s diabolical plotting that will bring the world to its tired, scab-riddled knees, and are sent on the flight of their young lives, to save themselves, their families, and the world from the darkest kind of destruction.
Let the chase begin.
Missy's take -
Sleight was unlike anything that I have ever read before. The story line, characters, basically everything was completely unique to me. Have you ever read something that you loved so much you didn't even know how to describe your love for it? Well it's kinda like that for me with this one.
Let me start with the characters. First and foremost we have Gemma. She is troubled from the start considering, as the story begins, her mother, Delia has just committed suicide. Delia has been in and out of mental institutions for as long as Gemma can remember. Gemma can also she "shades". Shades are dead people, but they do not talk to her. They just show up in random place like part of the scenery. This is something that is kept between her and her guardians because she is afraid everyone else with think that she is crazy like Delia was. Gemma lives with Ted and Marlene who she considers her aunt and uncle. They are all part of a traveling circus.
The circus is one of my favorite aspects of the book. I have never read a book before when the circus has played such an intricate part in a story. It was really interesting to hear some of the behind the scenes things about it.
I fell in absolute love with the other chararcters too! Ted, Marlene, Uncle Irwin, Ash, Janie, Henry and Lucian. I love the name Lucian! What a perfect bad guy name right? Anyway they all played into the story and were all fabulous in the roles that they played. Jenn wrote each character so believably. She made me fall in love with just about every single one of them! I wanted Irwin to be my uncle too!
After some odd circumstances arise, the traveling circus ends up coming to a stop because of Lucian Dimitri. For the first time in her life Gemma will have to go to public school to finish out her last 4 months of her senior year. She is very unhappy about it. She loves the secluded life that she has been living with her circus family. It is at the high school that she meets Henry, the son of Lucian. She instantly has a connection with him and he, like her, has a special ability.
It's through Henry that all sorts of revelations come about and Gemma finds out who she really is, why she has the ability she does and who her "real" family is. This puts Gemma and her circus family in great danger.
I LOVED this book. Actually love is probably putting it lightly. I am slightly obsessed with the story. It was absolutely fascinating. We are left with quite a cliffhanger and I don't know how I am going to wait until this fall to find out what happens. I might have to Twitter stalk Jenn until she tells me all about it!
Overall I HIGHLY recommend this book to people who are interested in YA paranormal. It was a fantastic and quick read. Jenn is a fabulous author and I can't wait for the next installment
This is another one of those books that kept me up late into the night and then followed me to work the next day. There was no way that I could wait a whole 8 hour shift before picking it back up again. Shhhh don't tell my boss! :)
Missy's rating -