Author: Em Bailey
Publisher: Electric Monkey
There were two things everyone knew about Miranda Vaile before she’d even arrived at our school. The first was that she had no parents – they were dead. And they were dead because Miranda had killed them.” Since her breakdown last year, Olive has become the school loner, so she can only watch as new girl Miranda latches on to her old best friend, class queen bee Katie. Soon Miranda is talking like Katie, dressing like Katie – even going out with Katie’s boyfriend.
Then something happens (edited as it’s majorly spoiler-y )
Olive is convinced Miranda is behind it, but the only person who believes her is Lachlan, the hot boy who won’t take the hint that she wants to be left alone. And then Miranda turns her attention on Olive. She makes life so much fun that soon they are best friends. But what price will Olive have to pay for this new friendship? With shock twists, a moving romance and a heart-racing climax, Shift will keep you turning the pages furiously.
Thriller, paranormal or contemporary? I don’t really know where to put Shift, it has elements that fit all three genres.
It has a thrilling story which quietly and unassumingly ticks over with every page bringing something a little bit different to the story. There are no sudden scares but as I read I began feeling more and more uneasy about a certain Miranda. The way she was behaving and the effect she was having on those around her.
I make no mistake when I say I disliked her. I want to say from the first time I met her but the truth is I didn’t, I just didn’t have a strong feeling for her straight away. Possibly mildly curious – a bit like when a new student starts a school midway through the year, but not an actual opinion. But the deeper into the story I got it pretty soon became clear there was more to her than met the eye.
I loved Olive’s reaction to her, how it was clear that despite not being best of friends any more with the class queen bee – Katie that she still cared for her, when she figured that something was wrong she wanted to do something. Anything – to help her and I really felt her frustration. It was also nice to see some of their past come to the fore without it becoming a major thing.
Paranormal fans will also get a little bit of what they’re after too. I’m not going to dig too much into this as it’s a very small part and I don’t want to spoil it so I’ll just leave it as saying there’s something there.
Shift deals with some areas which I never expected it to, things that took me by surprise and I loved the way the narrative handled them – one particular moment had me go “oh” – in a good way! Holding some things back from us that read like they were obvious to the other characters was I thought particularly clever. And in this lies it’s contemporary parts.
A special mention has to go to Lachlan, he becomes a sort of constant in the story – adds a splash of romance into the mix and always seems to be around when he’s needed. Without him the story would have felt very different and may quite possibly (nay, almost certainly) ended up very differently.
With twists which subtly reveal themselves fans of thrillers, paranormals or contemporaries will love Shift and with a little bit of romance thrown in for good measure this book really does have something for everyone.