Friday, January 30, 2009

Blue is for Nightmares by Laurie Faria Stolarz (4/5 stars)

This is the first book in the Blue is for Nightmares series; so far there are 4 books in this series. This book was kind of a cross between a mystery and a teen horror flick with a paranormal bent to it. It was a suspenseful and creepy novel that was hard to put down and had a number of surprising twists to it that left me unable to stop reading.

The book is written from the viewpoint of Stacey Brown. Stacey is a practicing Wiccan who has the ability to see the future. Exactly what Stacey's powers are and the consistency of her powers is kind of a mystery, even to her. She starts having nightmares about her best friend Drea being killed by someone. Last time Stacey had nightmares like this someone died. Stacey lives at a boarding school and as such there is a lot of teen angst going on; people are worried about homework and boyfriends more than anything. When Drea starts receiving strange messages from her supposed killer; Drea and Stacey don't know who to trust anymore.

This was kind of your typical teen read, it was well-written and easy to read. Stolarz does an exceptional job of building the mystery and suspense throughout the story. I found myself suspecting a number of different characters of being the stalker but couldn't figure out which one it was until the end. This story was nicely tied up at the end; you wouldn't need to read the rest of the books in the series to enjoy this one.

I had a couple small complaints. The first is that the Wiccan rituals (magic) that Stacey performs are detailed with excruciating detail. I imagine this took a lot of time to research on Stolarz's part. Initially these details are very interesting, but as the story continues I feel that the amount of page space that is lent to detailing these rituals starts to take away from the story. Many times I found myself skimming through these details because they just didn't pertain to the story that much. I also found Stacey's friends easy acceptance of all of the strange things Stacey does to be a little odd, but maybe not that out of place for a young teenage girl.

The second small complaint is a personal issue I have, the story was just a bit too creepy for me. I am not really all that into scary stories, I get nightmares from them. This definitely isn't the creepiest story I've read but it is up there in if you have problems with scary horror stories I would skip this one. This book is definitely more teen horror than it is a paranormal mystery.

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