A "good boy" will do anything for vengeance when a gang rite kills his twin sister. Will Lucas win, or follow his sister Silver into the darkness?
After a hideous car wreck, Lucas wakes from a coma to find that his world is gutted. Not only is his beloved twin sister, Silver, gone forever, but Lucas is broken in body and spirit. He will never be a college athlete, and is robbed of what he now realizes was the most important bond of his life. Although they weren't identical twins, Lucas and Silver shared a bond so fierce it defied reason, and was nearly supernatural.
After her death, that bond seems to endure when Lucas sees Silver everywhere he turns. Either he's crazy, or Silver is trying to tell him something about the California gang initiation they stumbled into that cost Silver her life. Lucas is bent on revenge, turning on Raymond, Silver's former boyfriend; the one Lucas never wanted her to date. He forms a posse of vigilantes to take out the gangsters responsible for Silver's death, but he risks not only his own life, but the love of the new girl on his block, who knows more about Lucas and Silver than can be accounted for by mere chance.
Making the leap from adult novels to YA, Richards (Wicked Paradise) delivers a convoluted tale of tragedy and revenge. A chance encounter with a gang initiation and some illegal street-racing ends Lucas's football career, destroys his prized Camaro, and kills his twin sister, Silver. Scarred and a social outcast as well as apparently haunted by his sister's ghost Lucas is determined to exact retribution. The high school senior's quest for vengeance is hindered by an antagonistic new teacher and a former friend turned bully, who is determined to get him in trouble. Richards keeps the paranormal aspect of the story subtle, adding to its mystery and tension. However, the unfocused storyline and Lucas's overwrought internal dialogue keep it from taking off. Between prose that tends toward purple ("I wanted every one of them to stroke the lacerations around my knee and torso, take a glimpse into the emptiness of my soul, and then ask how I was doing") and repetitive agonizing over Silver's death, Richards's message gets lost along the way. Ages 12 up.