May 19, 2012

Review: The Less-Dead

By: April Lurie
Published: January 2010 by Delacorte
Format: Hardback, 219 pages
First Reviewed: November 2010
Buy: Barnes & Noble//Books-A-Million//Amazon//Book Depository
Add it on Goodreads

I turn Will over and see the bruises first--dark purple bands across his neck. Strangled, like the others.

Noah Nordstrom has been dissing the religious beliefs of his father, who hosts a popular Christian radio show and whom Noah accuses of spreading hate. When two local gay teens are murdered, Noah’s anti-evangelism intensifies—he’s convinced that the killer is a caller on his dad’s program.

Then Noah meets Will Reed, a cool guy. But when he learns that Will is gay, Noah gets a little weirded out. Especially since Will seems really into him. Noah gives Will the brush-off. Meanwhile, the killer is still at large . . . and soon Noah finds the next victim. It’s Will.

Racked with guilt, Noah decides to investigate. He knows the serial killer is targeting gay teens, but only those who live in foster homes, whose deaths are not that important to society; they are the less-dead. Noah, however, is determined to prove that someone cares. With the help of Will’s journal, which he pocketed at the scene of the crime and in which the killer has written clues, Noah closes in on an opponent more dangerous than he can guess.

Rating: 3/5

I like murder mysteries, so I was excited to check this out. It's not something you see a lot of in young adult. This book wasn't amazing, but I didn't want to put it down from the moment I started it.

Liked some characters, loved a couple of them, but had a lot of trouble "seeing" them. I'm a description girl, if you hadn't noticed already, and that was my main problem with the characters. They were voices a lot of the time, and while I liked their personalities, I struggled to picture them. I do wish we got a little more out of some of the supporting characters because at some points, they started to blur together.

The writing style, for me, was pretty good. I liked the personality that Lurie gave Noah (the narrator), but I thought some of the narration was a bit much at times. And she over-used "Anyway" waaay too much, that at times I wanted to yell at her. I think I counted well over 30 times, and that was just in the last half of the book. Anyway (ha!), I think she did a great job of handling the content. It could have gone completely in the direction of offending certain people, but it didn't. Or at least I don't think people, unless you're extremely religious, would be offended.

I rather enjoyed the plot. I like mysteries anyway, and I like that we got to know the characters before the real investigative section started. Then again, I do think that part was rushed once we got to it. It kept my attention, and it made me want to keep reading to find out what happened, but it just seemed like the beginning was slow in comparison. Also, I felt it was pretty predictable toward the end. I wanted to be super surprised, but instead, I already knew who did it fairly quickly, so the thriller section fell flat for me. On another positive note, though, I really like that this dealt with gay teens. Not enough fiction does, in my opinion.

While I wouldn't call it a favorite, it was a nice read. But if you're extremely religious (against homosexuality and all that), then you may not like it. You can try it and see if it's okay for you, though.

No comments:

Post a Comment