When by Victoria Laurie
Author: Victoria Laurie
Published: 13th January 2015 by Disney-Hyperion
Source: E-copy for my honest review from NetGalley
Maddie Fynn is a shy high school junior, cursed with an eerie intuitive ability: she sees a series of unique digits hovering above the foreheads of each person she encounters. Her earliest memories are marked by these numbers, but it takes her father’s premature death for Maddie and her family to realize that these mysterious digits are actually death dates, and just like birthdays, everyone has one.
Forced by her alcoholic mother to use her ability to make extra money, Maddie identifies the quickly approaching death date of one client's young son, but because her ability only allows her to see the when and not the how, she’s unable to offer any more insight. When the boy goes missing on that exact date, law enforcement turns to Maddie.
Soon, Maddie is entangled in a homicide investigation, and more young people disappear and are later found murdered. A suspect for the investigation, a target for the murderer, and attracting the attentions of a mysterious young admirer who may be connected to it all, Maddie's whole existence is about to be turned upside down. Can she right things before it's too late?
I'll be honest, I wasn't expecting a whole lot when I started this book. I thought it sounded like an interesting story idea, but I wasn't sure how it would all come together. .. it came together very well! I was pleasantly surprised by the story and characters and once I started, I could not stop reading!
When centres around Maddie, a young girl with the ability to see people's 'death dates'; the day they are going to die. This leads to all sorts of trouble when a boy whose death date she predicted turns up murdered and Maddie becomes the lead suspect in his murder investigation.
The mystery and characters in When are just fantastic! Everyone has their own depth and story and each character has their own voice. And there were so many different connections and cross-overs between events and characters which made the story all the more enjoyable. Now, as for the mystery.. that was just really clever. I thought I had everything figured out then another piece of evidence would turn up, or something else would be uncovered and I would change my mind, still completely sure I had it right. I didn't. This story led me on a merry chase and I loved that things were never as straight forward as they seemed. I love a book that throws surprises my way and always keeps me guessing, and When definitely delivered on that front!
When is a really compelling read. Victoria Laurie did a fantastic job of crafting an emotional, page-turning read, with a thrilling mystery plot that always kept me guessing. This is a great read for mystery lovers, and for anyone who enjoys compelling YA stories!