Deception is the first in the Haunting Emma series by novelist Lee Nichols. It’s Nichols’ first foray into the young adult (YA) market after a number of chick-lit fiction novels. Right from the beginning, Nichols creates a fast-moving plot as main protagonist Emma Vaile’s parents depart—and ultimately disappear—on a mysterious business trip.
It isn’t, however, until Emma packs up her life in San Francisco and moves to a museum-like mansion in New England with rich, gorgeous, and unattainable guardian Bennett Stern that the action really gets underway for it is in this Boston suburb that Emma uncovers a truly ghostly secret. The more answers Emma is able to attain, the more questions it seems she has…not only about herself and the strange visions she’s begun to have but also about her parents and a troubling piece of her past.
Emma’s character is tough, inquisitive, and bright. She’s immediately likeable throughout the novel and feels refreshingly genuine. There’s a love triangle brimming with sexual tension and, at times, Emma and her potential suitors find themselves in danger, yet Emma has none of the qualities of a flighty damsel in distress. In fact, there are several points where she has to save the men in her life.
There was one narrative action that, had this book been a stand-alone novel, would have left me completely aghast. In fact, I had to put it down and take several deep breathes and even then, I was certain it was a hoax. I was wrong. The teaser chapter in the sequel at the back of the novel, however, explained for me why, exactly, Nichols had chosen a particular scene to unfold the way it had. My strong emotional reaction, however, are simply testament of what a compelling job Nichols has done in creating these truly vivid characters. On the whole, this book is a satisfying read by itself and the first installment of what will likely be a highly anticipated series.
To learn more about Nichols, see here and to watch a video of Nichols discussing Deception, visit here.
One of the reasons I’ve been doing so many contests is because I LOVE to read and I believe there’s no better gift than a free book that comes recommended by someone how’s read it. So you guessed it, I'm doing another contest.
To win Deception, the rules are pretty much the same:
1. Be a follower of my blog.
2. Click on my picture under “followers” and send me a message that says, “Deception contest entry.”
3. Extra entries are given for each time you refer a friend who becomes a follower or post a Facebook or Twitter blurb about the contest or my blog. (Note: friends must mention you by name in their email and you must include the FB or Twitter link so I can keep track.)
4. An extra entry is given if you include a request in your email of a post topic you'd like to see me do.
5. Contest closes at midnight EST on August 6. The winner will be posted on this blog and notified by email on August 9.
Good luck and happy reading!