In the tradition of The Lovely Bones and Neal Shusterman’s Everlost comes a haunting tale of two girls—one dead, one alive—and high school bullying that’s about to turn deadly.
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When Tatum has a falling-out with a popular girl at school, she isn’t prepared for the vicious backlash that follows. One foggy night, Tatum sneaks out for a drive. The teenage hitchhiker she picks up doesn’t talk much, until she suddenly turns to Tatum and says: “You’re going to die. It will hurt and you’ll be alone. And no one will help you.”
And then she disappears. Is the girl a ghost? Or is this just another sick game the bullies at school are playing? As the two girls’ stories converge, they will discover that the only way to help themselves is to first save each other.
★ “A satisfying read that tackles heavy issues and is never weighed down by them.” —Kirkus Reviews, Starred review
After Tatum reveals that her friend Charlotte is having an affair with a teacher, the entire school turns on Tatum, haranguing her online, defacing her locker, and vandalizing her car. When Tatum picks up a hitchhiker named Molly one night, the teenager leaves her with a warning ("You're going to die. It will hurt and you'll be alone") before vanishing into thin air. In this chilling ghost story, Molly, like the narrator in Alice Sebold's The Lovely Bones, exists in an in-between state, a stagnant island where the dead wait to "Fade" back into existence for the occasional haunting. The girls' parallel tragedies unravel through snippets of memories, then collide on the same back road in a small Washington State town 40 years apart. The relatively happy ending is a little too tidy given the overall dark tone, but it's certainly well-deserved after the traumas both girls suffer. As Roberts (The Bodies We Wear) traces betrayals and escalating violence in both the present and the past, readers will find Tatum and Molly's journeys hard to forget. Ages 14 up.