by Shirley Duke
Publisher: Lerner Publishing Group
Reading level: YA
Book type: prose novel
Omar is somewhat of a Facebook celebrity among his peers, writing popular fictional stories that earn him plenty of virtual friends and lots of comments. What his fans don't realize, however, is that Omar's not just using his imagination. He's experiencing visions and writing them down.
But when what Omar writes on his laptop suddenly starts to come true in real life, tragedy ensues. Now the people who were once his biggest fans have turned against him, and the police are at the door.
When Omar befriends another outsider, a girl from his school named Sophie, he thinks he may have finally found the solution to his problems. Sophie tells Omar that there may be a way to switch his talent off. But Sophie's cure may be worse than the visions themselves...
At just over 100 pages, this is a very short book. Thank goodness. Perhaps I'm just not the target audience, but I found this story to be pretty lacking in every aspect.
The basic premise was not that bad, but the whole book felt extremely rushed. There was a lot of telling and not enough showing, and some parts were skimmed through so quickly that I felt like even the author didn't care about what was happening. If the author doesn't care, why should the reader? At times, I felt like I was reading a synopsis instead of an actual book.
Because the book is so short, we never really get a sense of the characters; the author had to resort to caricatures to let us know who was good and who was evil. I was rolling my eyes and giggling to myself throughout. I'm pretty sure that's not the reaction one is supposed to get from reading "horror".
The only thing that's really scary is that this is marketed toward teens. I think I would have been insulted if someone had told my teenage self that this was the sort of book I was supposed to like. The tone seems way too juvenile to have the YA rating (and yet there's some subject matter in the story that I don't think would be appropriate for younger readers).
For a much better book with a similar premise, I'd recommend Draw the Dark by Ilsa J. Bick.
Overall: 1.33 out of 5