Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Review: Clarity by Kim Harrington

Hardcover: 242 pages
Release date: March 1st, 2011
Publisher: Scholastic Print
Source: Won
Buy it on: Amazon ││The Book Depository ││ Barnes & Noble
Goodreads Summary: When you can see things others can't, where do you look for the truth?
This paranormal murder mystery will have teens reading on the edge of their seats.
Clarity "Clare" Fern sees things. Things no one else can see. Things like stolen kisses and long-buried secrets. All she has to do is touch a certain object, and the visions come to her. It's a gift.
And a curse.
When a teenage girl is found murdered, Clare's ex-boyfriend wants her to help solve the case - but Clare is still furious at the cheating jerk. Then Clare's brother - who has supernatural gifts of his own - becomes the prime suspect, and Clare can no longer look away. Teaming up with Gabriel, the smoldering son of the new detective, Clare must venture into the depths of fear, revenge, and lust in order to track the killer. But will her sight fail her just when she needs it most?

Clarity “Clare” Fern is a 16-year old girl who belongs in a family with psychic abilities. Her mother can hear what people are thinking, although only the thoughts right at the very moment. Her older brother Perry has the ability of Mediumship or communicating with spirits, while Clare’s gift is retrocognitive psychometry, meaning she’s able to pick imprints from objects and see, hear, or feel memories in her mind. Living in a tourist town meant productive business for them to do their readings. Tourists love them, but not all locals think it isn’t a freaky family business. Their lives took a turn when a psychic woman moves in to their town and claims she can see the future that stirs up competition between their businesses. Unfortunately, a bigger challenge faces their town and the Fern family when an 18-year old tourist was murdered- a thing that hadn’t happened in a very long time in their town- and Clare was hired unofficially to help with the case alongside with the new detective’s son and her ex-boyfriend. The case hangs on her decisions and ability to find the killer… but what if the killer could be someone close to her heart?

I rarely do book summaries and I hope it didn’t confuse or give too much away. This is totally unexpected of me, just like how this book surprised and stunned me more than a few times. The only things I knew before reading this book is it’s about a girl with psychic abilities who will solve a mystery. Honestly, it wasn’t enough to interest me. But thankfully, I was convinced by bloggers who list Clarity as one of their favorite reads last year. Now I definitely understand their sentiments. This book is one hell of a thriller that engaged me from the very first page ‘til the last. 

The mystery of who is the killer keeps me guessing and going through my mind. Books that make me think earn another half-star for me. Unlike the very few mystery books I’ve read before, the story is not complicated to follow and understand. It suits very well with me and I commend Kim Harrington for that. There’s a love triangle, but I think romance is not the main focus of this one, however I guess the second book would contain a little more of that. 

I really like Clare as a main character. Stripping off her psychic ability, she’s just a regular teenage girl with boy problems, mean-girl type nemesis and stuff. Because of her ‘freakiness’, she was often bullied by some guys in high school. Thankfully she’s strong and intelligent to not feel all downhearted and awful and she has her loving older brother Perry by her side. Perry’s simply awesome. Forget about his hooking up with girls as a hobby as long as he’s a good and responsible brother who cares for his family. Then there’s also the new hottie in town George and her ex-boyfriend Justin. My only problem with this is George. I don’t know… I just don’t feel his and Clare’s connection or chemistry. I believe the thing between them is kind of rushed and underdeveloped. On the other hand I didn’t expect to really like Justin at all. Given the reason why Clare and he broke up, I thought he was a jerk but really he’s not. 

Of course there was also a time when I got annoyed and tired guessing who the killer is. But I tell you not to worry. Kim Harrington has her brilliant way of unfolding the mystery and serving it up to your plate. The second book, Peception, releases March 1st this year and I’m glad I don’t have to wait for so long. 
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