“Seriously, I Will Read Your Book”
Num8ers by Rachel Ward
Young adult author Rachel Ward drops the reader dead center in the ghettos of London and takes them on a countdown they’ll never forget.
By Rachel Ward
The Chicken House (2006)
Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle
Back Cover: Numbers that pop into her head when she looks into someone’s eyes. They’re dates, the numbers. Dates predicting death.
Burdened by such grim knowledge, Jem avoids relationships. Until she hooks up with Spider and decides to take a chance. But on a date to London, Jem foresees a chilling chain of events. The city’s a target. The clocks running out. The countdown is on to a blowup, and her world is about to explode!
Lara’s Review: Jem is a city girl and feels a deep connection to the anonymity of London’s grimy streets. For her entire life she has lived with seeing the date people will die in their eyes. This has caused her to keep to herself and watch from the sidelines as life and death passes her by.
This changes one day when she befriends a teen boy called Spider. Spider doesn’t have long to live, so hanging with him will be like having a convenient friend. But, as the days pass Jem is conflicted about Spider and her gift. Should she tell him? Does she have the power to stop it from happening? Jem and Spider experience a catastrophic event in the heart of London. The misfits find themselves the center of attention and on the run. Out of the city Jem is pushed further out of her comfort zone. In the midst of sleeping in barns and hiding in bushes Jem realizes she is falling in love with someone who only has days to live.
This book blew me away. Jem’s character was so compelling and her teen voice was laced with the thoughts that signify the journey we all experience on our way to adulthood. Strong-willed, but unsure, a loner, but wanting relationships, hating her gift to realizing she can help others deal with their own mortality. I kept expecting the book to wane in the middle, but the story became stronger and Jem’s journey more resolute. I would highly recommend this book for teens and adults.
Please note: Parents please note there is a sex scene in this book. Rachel writes it with taste and portrays the awkwardness and excitement of the moment.
- Num8ers (yabookscentral.blogspot.com)