07 April 2013
Bailey, Em. Shift. Egmont USA, 2012.
Olive has been hospitalized for an unnamed mental illness, and now she has returned to school. She takes her meds, goes to class, tries to stay out of trouble. She spends a lot of time with her friend Ami. One day a new girl shows up at school, and there's something strange about her. Olive decides Miranda (the new girl) is a shape-shifter who basically sucks the personality and life out of a person. Miranda begins following Katie, the most popular girl, and soon Katie becomes really sick while Miranda takes Katie's boyfriend, Katie's followers, and eventually Katie's life. But no one believes Olive. They just adjust her meds and tell her to face her fears. Then Miranda turns her attention to Olive, and soon Olive feels the life draining out of her...
That description makes this book sound more interesting than it was. It was okay at the beginning, even with the creepy shape-shifting thing going on. About halfway through the book we discover that Ami is just a figment of Olive's imagination. Then Katie dies, and Miranda sics herself onto Olive. At that point I quit caring about what happened in this story. The thriller part of it wasn't thrilling enough, and the contemporary "chick lit" part of it wasn't realistic enough. It was just a weird mishmash of genres and it didn't really work for me.
This book might work for readers who like both thrillers and contemporary fiction, or fans of chick lit who want to break out of their typical genre. It does discuss mental illness, but doesn't give enough descriptions or information to be truly helpful.