Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready

shade_jerismithreadyFrom The Encyclopedia of Shade:

Shift – a remarkable period of time that scientists can’t explain. Every baby, called “post-shifters”, born after this time has been able to see ghosts as a strange, purple hue. It happened almost seventeen years ago.

Red – the color that ghosts can’t take very well. If anyone, including a post-shifter, wears red, the ghost will stay away from them.

BlackBoxed – a new and remarkable invention that allows an entire room to be either free from ghosts or keep ghosts in. This means that if a room is BlackBoxed, ghosts can’t get in or out.

Aura– a young girl of sixteen (almost seventeen) years. There is a huge possibility that she is the first post-shifter, but it is not in solid facts yet. Her mother died from cancer and father is unknown, so her guardian is her mother’s sister, Aunt Gina. With her Aunt Gina, she helps ghosts move on to the Afterlife. After her boyfriend Logan died and she was able to see him as a ghost, she decided to also help him move on and prove to others that he didn’t know what he was doing when he died.

Logan- a ghost who died on his seventeenth birthday. He died because he was drinking, and then took drugs to stay awake and alert, not knowing that a combination of alcohol and drugs could kill him. While he was alive, he was in a band with some of his friends. However, he could become a Shade because of all the hatred he has as a ghost. He is still in love with Aura after he dies.

Zachary– a young Pre-shifter from Scotland. There is a possibility that he is the last Pre-shifter, but it is not certain. He has transferred to Aura’s school after his dad had his work transferred to America. Coincidentally, he is also Aura’s astrology partner, and has the same birth date as her.

Shade– what ghosts can become if they get too angry. They appear as all black hues, and make post-shifters sick. Unlike ghosts, they can go anywhere they want. However, they are always angry, and it is a bitter hell for them. If a ghost turns into a Shade, they cannot turn back, ever. Aura is afraid Logan would turn into one of these.

Overall view- very well written. This book will have readers off the edges of their seats as they solve spectacular mysteries, such as Aura’s father and why the Shift happened. Additionally, the characters were just like one would meet in everyday life and seem to be as real as the person who sits next to them. There is also the idea of suspense, with the readers wondering what will happen next and if the story will be a happily ever after. And when the story does reach its end, the readers will be sad that there isn’t more.

Warning- There is mature content such as drugs, alcohol, etc. Additionally, this book is the first of a trilogy, meaning that readers will be craving for the next book.

-Megan V., 10th grade

Shade is available for check out from the Mission Viejo Public Library.