Vesper (Deviants #1)
by Jeff Sampson
304 pages - Hardcover
Published January 25th 2011 by Balzer + Bray / HarperCollins
ISBN: 0061992763 (ISBN13: 9780061992766)
Emily Webb is a geek. And she’s happy that way. Content hiding under hoodies and curling up to watch old horror flicks, she’s never been the kind of girl who sneaks out for midnight parties. And she’s definitely not the kind of girl who starts fights or flirts with other girls’ boyfriends. Until one night Emily finds herself doing exactly that . . . the same night one of her classmates—also named Emily—is found mysteriously murdered.
The thing is, Emily doesn’t know why she’s doing any of this. By day, she’s the same old boring Emily, but by night, she turns into a thrill seeker. With every nightfall, Emily gets wilder until it’s no longer just her personality that changes. Her body can do things it never could before: Emily is now strong, fast, and utterly fearless. And soon Emily realizes that she’s not just coming out of her shell . . . there’s something much bigger going on. Is she bewitched by the soul of the other, murdered Emily? Or is Emily Webb becoming something else entirely— something not human?
As Emily hunts for answers, she finds out that she’s not the only one this is happening to—some of her classmates are changing as well. Who is turning these teens into monsters—and how many people will they kill to get what they want?
The story starts with Emily Webb about to sneak out from her bedroom window wearing clothes that her geeky self would never have the guts to wear; exposed cleavage, short shorts and way too much make-up. The weird thing is, she doesn’t remember why and how she got dressed like that. If her best friend, Megan, hadn’t called when she was halfway out the window, she doesn’t have an idea what she would have done next.
What bugs Emily more though, is that the night she started acting the total opposite of her geeky self is also the night that Emily Cooke – the other Emily who liked to party – was shot dead. Emily thinks that Emily Cooke’s spirit possesses her every night and makes her do things that Emily Cooke does.
I initially thought that Vesper was a crime/suspense/mystery book about a kickass teenager with split personality and awesome detective skills. That was the impression I got from the description. Turns out, it was hardly any of those. Not really. So you can only imagine my surprise when I finally discovered the real deal with Emily Webb. I can’t say whether this is a bad thing or good thing though. The deal with effective shock factors in books is that, the readers will be awed by the unpredictability of the story. But on the other hand, the cause of that shock factor must be something the readers would approve of because this would either disappoint or please the readers. In Vesper’s case, I wasn’t at all thrilled to find out what Emily really is.
The plot's pace is really slow. I wouldn't recommend this much to impatient readers. It took me a huge amount of will power not to look at the last pages. But anyway, Vesper has that really intriguing quality to it that wouldn't let me close the book and chuck it somewhere. No, I stayed where I was seated from start to finish and inhaled the book in 6 hours. The transcripts are also enough to make the reader guessing and be more intrigue with the story.
Rating: 3.5/5 stars