Dan has dodged the Reaper again. If he were a cat, five of his nine lives would be gone - when his mates didn't even get second chances. He's still grieving their deaths when he's dragged on a family holiday at a remote island lighthouse. Left alone, at what feels like the end of the earth, Dan starts sensing a mysterious girl. Is she a dream? Or has he somehow hooked into the spirit world? The lighthouse logbook helps illuminate some of the girl's tragic story but Dan will have to dig deeper to find answers and the inspiration to embrace life again.
About the Author
Tim Pegler is the author of Game as Ned, a Children's Book Council notable book in 2008.
Tim Pegler is some sort of plotting genius. He has two timelines, Dan's present day holiday at the island (which also includes flashbacks to his life before the accident) and the second story of the people who lived at the light house which is unveiled through the light house log and some research at a local museum.
The pacing is so well done that everything unfolds brilliantly, always leaving more mystery and secrets for the reader - the whole mass of story and emotions and mystery is all explored in just under 200 pages and it's incredible how much power and emotion is packed into such a short space. One of the dangers of weaving different time lines and characters together is that I often end up being more invested in one of the stories than the other. Not so here - in fact, I felt deeply immersed in all the characters and their journeys.
It's eerie. Okay, so I was reading it home alone in the middle of the night during a coastal storm. And, initially, I felt freaked out in a goosebumpy delicious way which then changed to a complete wide-eyed horror as the story progressed. There's some gore and creepy stuff going down.
It has a very sexy, very teen love story in there.
Not only is the story stunning - both timelines, but the characters, make this book far more than just a captivating story. They're the kind of characters that feel real, that are captured in smart, succinct dialogue and individual nuances. They're characters that make you ache and laugh and it was so easy for me to visualise them and find myself caring for them immensely.
Me and Five Parts Dead
I don't cry in books. Sometimes I call books tear jerkers because they really tug at my emotions. I was happily grinning away one page and completely invested in the story, madly flipping through pages, and then - BAM - the next minute my eyes have welled up and tears are spilling over and I felt like I had been ripped open.
Other cool cool stuff:
Pip (funky 17 year old girl)- reads Markus Zusak's The Book Thief, out in the sun on the island. Loved that :)
Dan's a twin. I love twin stuff in books. And this is cool as his twin is a sister.
the car crash scene is the best I have ever read, anywhere. Talk about graphic - I was wide-eyed and hit hard. Mesmerising prose. I don't think the images created in my mind will ever leave me.
there's some freaky haunting stuff in here. Including an exorcism scene - which is creepier as it's notated factually in the light house log book.
there's some cannibalistic stuff going down. Everyone loves a bit of cannibalism, yeah :)
I got right inside Dan's head space - such an honest and funny and heart-felt male POV. I really love the guy. And he's having such a rough time...
Recommended: Five Parts Dead is on my favourites shelf (obviously) and I can't wait until my boys (and my girl) are old enough to read it. It's a perfect novel for all ages, that will capture the imagination of all readers - but it's especially brilliant for boys and reluctant readers. This is a book that will not only mesmerise readers, but one that will linger. And did I mention it's funny? I so love books that make me grin :)
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