By Lauren Myracle
Summary: When her best friend Patrick falls victim to a hate crime, Cat starts her own investigation. Living in a tight knit southern community means that everyone is close, but in the case of violence, Cat is learning they protect their own and don’t appreciate her sticking her nose where it doesn’t belong. Her investigation leads her to learn shocking secrets about those closest to her, secrets that lead her closer and closer to Patrick’s attacker and to danger.
Review: Shine tackles some serious and not often touched on topics including homophobia, hate crimes, poverty, abuse and drugs. While the novel is gritty and honest in how it handles these darker issues, the story has a much softer side. Cat is a compelling character as she comes out of her own brokenness for the sake of Patrick and learns to let people back into her life and to forgive. There was a lot of suspense and I think YA readers familiar with the more adult genre of mystery will really find something to love in this novel. Shine does have a little something for everyone. The writing is very mature and the author often went on flashback tangents that made the pacing a little uneven. However, I think it was an enjoyable novel; one that I hope is not overlooked in favour of more typical blockbuster books.
Author website: http://www.laurenmyracle.com/
Cover Art: 2/4
Grade Level Interest: S