Author: Megan Miranda
Source: Contest Win
Reading level: Ages 12 and up
Publisher: Walker Childrens
(January 17, 2012)
Eleven minutes passed before Delaney Maxwell was pulled from the icy waters of a Maine lake by her best friend Decker Phillips. By then her heart had stopped beating. Her brain had stopped working. She was dead. And yet she somehow defied medical precedent to come back seemingly fine
-despite the scans that showed significant brain damage. Everyone wants Delaney to be all right, but she knows she’s far from normal. Pulled by strange sensations she can’t control or explain, Delaney finds herself drawn to the dying. Is her altered brain now predicting death, or causing it?
Then Delaney meets Troy Varga, who recently emerged from a coma with similar abilities. At first she’s reassured to find someone who understands the strangeness of her new existence, but Delaney soon discovers that Troy’s motives aren’t quite what she thought. Is their gift a miracle, a freak of nature-or something much more frightening?
I have been eyeing this book for a while now and was excited to win an ARC copy of it for review. I love books about after death experiences and what a person goes through after the miracle of coming back from the dead without the zombie angle added in. So when I started reading this book it was no surprise that I ended up putting everything else on hold just to finish it in one sitting.
When Delaney and her best friend/neighbor Decker cross the frozen lake to meet up with friends, Delaney slips and falls through the ice. She struggles to find the surface as Decker tries to get to her, only to drown in the freezing Maine waters. She was under the water for a total of eleven minutes. Death is definite at ten minutes, but somehow after being pulled out of the waters at eleven minutes, Delaney is brought back to life. She is confused at first, but as the events of that day are filled in, she starts to realize she is not quite the same as before. She is a walking miracle in the fact that she survived, but she also did it without any brain damage. She does have an abnormal brain scan now, but she is walking and talking just as before.
When Delaney starts to get a terrible itch and trembling fingers, she starts to feel a pull that she can’t resist following. What she ends up realizing is that she is being pulled to people who are facing death and they are facing it soon. When she is approached by Troy though, she realizes she is not the only person who is like this. Troy has been through his own near death experience but he has a different outlook on the situation. He tries to convince Delaney to do things his way, but Delaney believes she could do good with this new ability. During all of this, Decker is there for her and is secretly hiding the fact that he is in love with her. Delaney needs to sort out her feelings between the two boys she has in her life and also deal with the fact that she is now a walking death sensor.
I absolutely loved this book. I fell in love with Decker from the first few chapters and could already sense his feelings for Delaney. While Delaney did seem to have some snobbish feelings towards the people who visit her afterwards, I feel that the author did a wonderful job in explaining why she was this way towards them. I liked Troy at first in the book, but as the story progressed, I realized he wasn’t what he seemed. I could also see his point in his reasoning of why they were given this gift, but I didn’t like how he was using it either.
I personally can’t wait to see what other stories this author will come up with. I love the fact that she can take a great subject and turn it into a wonderful story that keeps the reader engaged from page one up until the end. A great new paranormal book to add to the genre from a debut author that can write beautifully!