Author: Jennifer Archer
ARC, 379 pages
Date Published: April 5, 2011
Description (Taken from Goodreads):
Sixteen-year-old Tansy Piper moves with her grandfather and her mother, a horror writer, to the setting of her mother's next book--a secluded house outside of a tiny, desolate West Texas town. Lonely and upset over the move, Tansy escapes into her photography and the dark, seductive poems she finds hidden in the cellar, both of which lure her into the mind and world of a mysterious, troubled young man who died sixty years earlier.
The first third of the book has a very creepy feel to it and I wish that had lingered as well throughout the entire novel. The poetry in the journal, along with the nightingale that only Tansy hears and her sudden trips into a black and white world, make this new town and this new house very eerie. The teens in the black and white world are all-engrossing, especially Henry, the boy whose house Tansy now resides in. Henry is a creep. His dark eyes and violent attitude are captivating, but terrifying at the same time. Tansy’s draw to him is understandable.
Once Tansy begins ‘falling into’ Henry’s world, she starts to become less her and more the girl she falls into, Isabel. This is where the story should pick up, but it actually feels more like a lull – a bit too drawn out, but still enjoyable. Each trip to Henry’s world brings Tansy’s own a little more out of focus, to the point where she debates which one to stay in. On top of all this time slip stuff, are some wonderful characters. The secondary characters are a joy to know. There’s the brainy, 13 year old wunderkind, Bethyl Ann ‘Stinky’ Pugh, the hot and cold Tate, Tansy’s mother, both the Papa Dan of the present and the Daniel of the past, and characters like straight A-Allison, Rooster Boy, and beer for breakfast Shanna. They’re all nicely placed and have purpose in the story.
Through Her Eyes is a uniquely creepy ghost story with a time slip nature and some engrossing characters. Jennifer Archer brings both her characters and the plot full circle, and does so in one novel. No sequels, no continuations of the story. In a time when nearly all YA books become a series, I was delighted to read such a strong standalone.
Opening line (from the prologue): I died on a bitter, cold night. ~ pg. 6
Favorite lines: I pretend to concentrate on my list while sneaking peeks at Shanna’s note to someone named “Beeyotch.” Ironic, since I’ve been thinking that name would suit Shanna perfectly. ~ pg. 105
*This is the ARC version and lines, pages, cover art may differ from final copy
*This review is my honest opinion and I received no monetary compensation from it.
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