It’s a year since Jess’s cousin Freya fell to her death from the cliffs in the small seaside town of Port Sentinel. Now 16-year-old Jess and her mother are visiting the town for the summer and Jess thinks the verdict of accidental death might not be telling the full story. So she begins to investigate, getting to know the other young people in the town and finding out about the relationships and jealousies that might have led to Freya’s death.
The book is told in the first person from Jess’s viewpoint. She is a strong character, intelligent, brave, beautiful (of course), stubborn and with a lot of Casey’s trademark humour. I enjoyed these elements of her character but felt that she also came over as incredibly nosey and pretty insensitive to other people’s feelings which made her hard to like as much as I felt we were supposed to. Some of the other characters felt a bit stereotyped and I was disappointed that YA fiction still seems to need the strong male to come along and rescue the girl from her obstinate folly a bit too often. On the other hand, the male in question was deep, super-handsome, the strong, silent type, and the romance element of the book worked very well, I thought.
This book is for Young Adults – I’d guess primarily for girls from about 12 up. Sadly, I haven’t been a young adult since back sometime in the last millennium so clearly not the target audience for this book. However I love Jane Casey’s Maeve Kerrigan series, which I must now assume are for Old Adults, so was interested to see how her style would work in this genre. Overall, I enjoyed the book and suspect I would have enjoyed it even more when I was a teenager. Casey’s writing is excellent as always and the plotting is strong. An entertaining read for people like me who have enjoyed Casey’s other work and are impatiently waiting for Maeve’s next outing; and highly recommended for the target group of YAs. I look forward to seeing some reviews from younger people to see what they think.