Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Clarity.

Title/Author: Clarity by Kim Harrington.

Genre: YA, Mystery, Supernatural.

Publisher: Point, an imprint of Scholastic, Inc.

Source: Purchased.

Favorite character: Clarity.

All in all: LOVED IT!

Synopsis: When you can see things others can't, where do you look for the truth?

Clarity "Clare" Fern sees things. Things no one else can see. Things like stolen kisses and long-buried secrets. All she has to do is touch a certain object, and the visions come to her. It's a gift.

And a curse.

When a teenage girl is found murdered, Clare's ex-boyfriend wants her to help solve the case--but Clare is still furious at the cheating jerk. Then Clare's brother--who has supernatural gifts of his own--becomes the prime suspect, and Clare can no longer look away. Teaming up with Gabriel, the smoldering son of the new detective, Clare must venture into the depths of fear, revenge, and lust in order to track the killer. But will her sight fail her just when she needs it most? ~Goodreads.com

My Thoughts: The acknowledgements at the end of the book mentioned Veronica Mars and I thought, “Definitely!” In fact, I kept thinking of Veronica throughout this book.

Chapter one starts right off with a dangerous conflict that drew me in and then the novel went into the events leading up to it. I love the writing.  It's pretty, fun, clear and flows well.  I also love the small details, how the author uses brushstrokes to paint the world. The beach, their house, the summer traffic, even the use of the slang word “wicked” had me believe I was in Cape Cod.

The plot has several elements occurring but is easy to follow.  The author keeps it simple and clean and  although it was a tiny bit formulaic, I didn’t figure out the mystery 100%.  I also have to admit I had a hard time with some of Clare’s doubts about someone who was an initial suspect and yet when she suspects another character of betraying her trust, she believes that person right away when they set her straight. These were my only qualms with Clarity.  HOWEVER, I feel they were minor in comparison to the overall story.  I loved it and couldn’t put it down.

***SPOILER ALERT: Yes, there is a love triangle, but it isn’t your typical cliche and allows Clare to come to terms with a betrayal, and learn and grow from it.  She finally understands that just because someone makes a mistake, doesn’t mean they are a terrible person.  Something, that I even need to remember.  This is probably my favorite part of the story because Clare stuck to her guns although a piece of her didn’t want to. I couldn’t decide which team I would be, team Justin her former boyfriend or team Gabriel, her new potential love interest. Justin is the guy who always believed in her and Gabriel is the guy who doesn’t believe in psychics, but clearly cares about her. But really Clare, you can’t expect someone who is skeptical to just start believing because you say it’s true, or because you’re a nice person. Skeptics need proof! What I really like is that she is strong about what feels right for her. Maybe because I’ve been in her situation and could really relate. It was waaay back in high school and I knew I had to break up with a boy I liked even though I didn’t want to. :END SPOILER ALERT***

Clarity had enough spookiness and supernatural elements to keep me believing and did not go over the top. I’m a skeptic, but the family's psychic abilities and how they worked and didn’t work for that matter, are very convincing. I enjoyed the belief that no one can see the future because people have free will and the path that someone takes is constantly changing.

I love all the characters, from her spacy mother to her player brother and even to mean girl Tiffany, although  Clare is my favorite.  Her wit is funny, her vulnerability touching, her strength inspiring.

I really am not into the whole “trilogy” scene that is prevalent in the publishing world now. The endings of a lot of books really leave me hanging and frustrated and feeling as if I have no choice but to read the next installment. This was not the case in Clarity. The author tied up the present mystery, while leaving just a taste of another episode to come. I didn’t feel like the author threw a curve ball in the story to force me to chase it. The book is a great stand alone, but has room to grow. I personally am very much looking forward to the next mystery that is hinted at.

I've seen a lot of chatter regarding the cover.  I am more inclined to pick up dark or gothic covers, but I think it's pretty and now that I've read the book I feel the cover fits the story. 


(I am trying something new:  Writing about books without giving a rating!  I'm going to see if it works for me and for you.  Please let me know what you think.  If you must see a rating from me, you can visit my Goodreads page or my Amazon reviews.)

13 comments:

Delphyne said...

I can tell just how you feel without seeing a rating! I've been thinking about reading Clarity. I'm glad to see you really enjoyed it.

Kate said...

See, I don't like the cover. I kind of want to feed her a hamburger. So that actually put me off the book, although I have heard some really good things about it. I'd be willing to check this out from the library though, I'll keep my eyes open!

Smash Attack! said...

Reall enjoyed your review of Clarity! Great little book. :)

Savannah said...

I just picked up this book! Super excited to read it. Glad you like it. I have heard nothing but good things so far. Great review Pam!

Bookish Brunette said...

I sooo want to read this one! I'm ordering a whole ton of books from Amazon today... Thanks for reminding me that I needed to grab this one too!

Maria (Serpentine Library) said...

I really liked Clarity too, especially that it felt and read like a standalone novel. I'm happy that Kim Harrington will be writing more books about Clare and her family, but she did wrap everything up nicely so that the main mystery was solved.

Missie said...

I won this book and can't wait to get to it! I don't think I need a star rating to tell me anything different than what your review conveyed Pam!

Clare sounds like a dynamic character, and I'm interested in this mystery that isn't easy to guess at. Plus, I'm over the whole trilogy thing too. It's good to know that this one ties up the present story before hinting at the next adventure.

Larissa {Larissa's Bookish Life} said...

Nice review! I have seen this book around a lot, but Im not sure if its for me yet =P

Jenny said...

So glad you enjoyed this one too, I just loved it! I absolutely agree with you on the love triangle, normally they make me roll my eyes, but this one was done well since both men were flawed and real, and Clare wasn't all doe-eyed over either of them. I loved that everything was tied up pretty neatly as well, it was refreshing not to have a cliffhanger. Fabulous review!

Vampires and Tofu said...

For someone reason or other this one just hasn't caught my eye. I've been a little disappointed with YA paranormals lately. Started feeling like I was reading the same book over and over MadLibs style...name a paranormal ability...2 quirky boy names...quirky girl name...reason parents are clueless...
But your review makes me want to read this one. Sounds like Clare isn't just a one dimensional character and learns from things. Methinks me wants =)

Midnyte Reader said...

Thanks for your comments everyone!

@Delphyne-Thanks for responding about the rating.

@Kate-I can totally see why you would be put off by the cover, but I kept hearing good things about it.

@Smash-Yeah, it was a great little book!

@Savvy, Bookish Brunette & Missie-I'll be looking for your reviews. Can't wait to read your opinion.

@Maria-I'm glad you liked Clarity too. I'm looking forward to her next book.

@Larissa-To be honest, based on the books that you read and have loved, I'm not sure I would recommend this one specifically for you either.

@Jenny-Yeah, the love triangle seemed more real this time and I totally love Clare.

@V&T-I know what you mean. I'm passing over so many nowadays b/c of the descriptions. I kind of click past when I hear the same old plot. Looking forward to see if we agree on this one!

Orchid said...

I'm always a bit cautious when a book gets such rave reviews, but I'm thinking I'm going to have to read Clarity. It sounds so good and your review made it sound even better.

Orchid
The Haunting of Orchid Forsythia

Midnyte Reader said...

@Orchid-I am the same way, but I'm glad I took a chance on this one.

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