Thursday, January 21, 2010

Reviewed by McKenzie Stephens, Teen Staff Writer

Shudder by Jennie Hansen. Published by Covenant Communications, Inc.

Darcy and Clare have always shared everything together, a childhood, an apartment, thoughts and dreams. Unfortunately, when Clare starts dating Blaine, who is abusive, she starts telling lies and keeping secrets to explain her brusies and broken bones. Darcy tries everything to help Clare see the truth - but when Blaine moves into their apartment, Darcy decides it's time to leave. Darcy starts rooming with an older woman who was in an accident - but she is adament that it wasn't really an "accident". Danger seems all around Darcy as she worries about the people in her life. Then she meets the attractive track coach at the school she is student teaching at and she is able to share her concerns with him. When Clare finally reaches to Darcy for help, Darcy wonders if it may be too late, for both of them.

This is a very exciting book. It has a lot of intense action moments tempered with some sweet emotional parts. The characters are well developed and the plot is engaging. The book is bittersweet but has a strong message about the vicious cycle of abuse. I reccommend this book to ages 12 and up.