Title: The Unquiet
Author: Jeannine Garsee
Pub: 2012; Bloomsbury
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Mystery
Etc: Hugs and such to NG and Bloomsbury
There once was a girl that died
A murder to hide
If not for the haunting
And unrelentless taunting
Paybacks would be denied.
I was skeptical at first. The book immediately rubbed me the wrong way when, in the opening chapters, Rinn reveals that she is bi-polar and ended up being the cause of her grandmother's death because of the voices in her head. I seriously wanted to roll my eyes because I was concerned that the author did research enough mental illness data to correctly diagnose her protagonist. I shouldn't have feared, though. Delving deeper into the pages, Rinn ALSO reveals that she experiences psychotic episodes from lengthy moments of mania. THIS I could buy into. Which was a relief, because The Unquiet is definitely one of, if not, THE BEST young adult read of 2012.
After the horrible death, Rinn's mom packs her and her daughter up to leave California and start over. They end up in this pokedunk town that the mom grew up in. Just like the stereotypical everyone-knows-everyone-elses-business, this town is no different. Within the first day of showing up, Rinn already experiences leftover *issues* that her mom had with some of the people of the town, including their landlord. That wouldn't be a big deal except Rinn is totally digging his son.
But there's more. This isn't really a love story although there is some realistic lurrrrve scenes going on. Nope. There's a murder and a ghost and a suicide all entwined within the history of the home that Rinn is living in. The ghost stuff is pretty real to the townsfolk although Rinn's mom passes it off as "you know those people, Rinn - *eye roll*" Except Rinn is all, "But mooooommmm! A woman HUNG herself in my room and HER daughter died at the school. AND ALSO BTW DIDN'T YOU KNOW ABOUT ALL OF THIS?"
Lots of twists and turns and then Rinn goes off of her meds and you're wondering what is real and what isn't just like her and Farm Boy Hottie is trying to be a decent boyfriend while Rinn's new friends are mysteriously having breakdowns and Rinn is all IT'S THE GHOST!
Ghost stories are pretty difficult to pull off. I mean, story lines are so. over. done. It's hard to be new and innovating and yet somehow Garsee takes what we already think we know about ghosts and navigates a tale filled with freshness. She's a newbie to me author and I'm hooked.