Ok, So What Had Happened Was: This girl Kayla Sloane was pronounced dead and her death was ruled as an accident, leaving an invisible dead someone feeling QUITE feisty. Then there’s Jade, new girl on the block, who is mostly excited to live up her dream of having a posh upper-class-looking house in a city with an actual assortment of real live teenagers who don’t have names like Bubba and realize the value of taking the SATs. Until peeps at her new school start whispering behind their gossipy hands and she has no clue why. Turns out, girlfriend is putting up her feet in the living room where a dead, possibly MURDERED, girl used to throw parties and kiss boys. And, as she soon discovers, still
Just so you know: I’m an unabashed Kim Harrington fan. Her last two books were light and fun with a small dose of sobriety, you know with them being about murders in need of solving. So it’s really no surprise that I’d not only silently prayed to the literature gods for this book but that I appreciated every page that was turned in spite of its imperfections. Because it DOES have some flaws, some holes in the plot that beg the need for suspension of disbelief.
Even so, it’s always fun to read a story where the villain isn’t exactly who you expect it to be. Don’t get me wrong, for you masters of deduction, THE KILLER may be easy to peg. But the killer and the villain, in my book of principles, aren’t exactly the same. Because the spirit in Jade’s house is not Kayla the Friendly Ghost; she’s Kayla the Step Beneath Regina George. The mean girl who ruled her circle with fear and intimidation and lies; we’ve seen her type before. And while I wasn’t exactly TERRIFIED BONELESS of her, she had her creepy moments and was just a bone-deep mean and vindictive troll who’s only slightly pitiful in that she was probably never loved (mostly by her own fault, but STILL). There’s no ‘be at peace’ disappearing act in her cards. She was too awful, never learned or grew.
The sense of urgency to find the killer is balanced out by the thrill of chasing down clues, evidence, and suspects. I myself had a manageable list, but I will confess that I didn’t guess the true identity of the killer, though I wasn’t shocked, until THE MOMENT they turned around and did the dramatic gasp and requisite ‘it was you!’ And in the midst of all that supernatural turmoil and dramarama among Kayla’s disciples and boy toys, our girl Jade is busy falling out of her pants for the sad, tortured Donovan, with awesome blue eyes and artistic inclinations. He’s not my favorite guy ever—Jade isn’t my favorite girl, for that matter—but I buried my head in all the delicious chemistry anyway (but, I AM a teeny bit disappointed there wasn’t much tension or buildup). It was so easy to just lose myself in the fun of it.
As someone who really digs Harrington’s stories, I had no outstanding problems with The Dead and Buried by Kim Harrington. It’s fun and thrilling and I was more than happy to give away the precious little time remaining from my Sunday to meet Jade and Co.
I requested this title from Scholastic via Netgalley.