Imagine a modern spin on Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein where a young couple’s undying love and the grief of a father pushed beyond sanity could spell the destruction of them all.
A string of suspicious deaths near a small Michigan town ends with a fall that claims the life of Emma Gentry’s boyfriend, Daniel. Emma is broken, a hollow shell mechanically moving through her days. She and Daniel had been made for each other, complete only when they were together. Now she restlessly wanders the town in the late Fall gloom, haunting the cemetery and its white-marbled tombs, feeling Daniel everywhere, his spectre in the moonlight and the fog.
When she encounters newcomer Alex Franks, only son of a renowned widowed surgeon, she’s intrigued despite herself. He’s an enigma, melting into shadows, preferring to keep to himself. But he is as drawn to her as she is to him. He is strangely… familiar. From the way he knows how to open her locker when it sticks, to the nickname she shared only with Daniel, even his hazel eyes with brown flecks are just like Daniel’s.
The closer they become, though, the more something inside her screams there’s something very wrong with Alex Franks. And when Emma stumbles across a grotesque and terrifying menagerie of mangled but living animals within the walls of the Franks’ estate, creatures she surely knows must have died from their injuries, she knows.
This is the story of Emma, a girl who has lost her boyfriend in a tragic accident, and Alex, a boy so like Dead Boyfriend that Emma can’t seem to stay away. Oh, yeah, and something about Frankenstein, which is a little misleading.
I should not have requested this book. I admit, the cover looked so much like Unspoken that I requested without really reading the summary. This isn’t sci-fi, it’s romance. All romance. Emma’s boyfriend was killed, and all she can think about is him. She actually says, “I shouldn’t be thinking about other guys when I have perfect memories.” Oh, Emma. That made me sad, and sort of set the whole tone for how much I enjoyed this one. Which was not much, to be honest. My first GoodReads progress update on this one should tell you that. The writing was a little overwrought and dramatic, and the symbolism (Shelley High, Alex Franks) was… not subtle. I hate to start off a review with things I didn’t like, but there really was not much I liked here.
In fact, I disliked it so much, it became my first DNF of 2013. Don’t take my word for it though, if tragic love is your thing, definitely check it out.