Sunday, July 12, 2015

Review: The Secrets of Love and Death by E. Van Lowe and Sal Conte


About the Book:

Theo "Turtle" Dawson is overweight, under-confident and unloved, that is until the arrival of Turtle's new classmate, feisty Rita Calderon. It's springtime in Foster City, and young love between the teenage couple begins to bloom, until...

...Turtle's best friend, big brother returns from the grave. At least that's what A.D. wants Turtle to believe. Is A.D. really back among the living, or is Turtle going loony-bin crazy? And if Turtle's loving brother has returned, why is he asking Turtle to do such murderous things? "The Secrets of Love and Death" is a ghostly tale of romance and horror, memories, and murder.

Book Details:

Kindle File Size: 521 KB
Print Length: 270 pages
Publisher: White Whisker Books; First edition (July 10, 2015)
Publication Date: July 10, 2015
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
ASIN: B010IFNF2Q

For More Information and to Purchase:

The Secrets of Love and Death

My Review:

Turtle is bullied at school for being overweight. His princess-in-shining-armor, a girl who just moved to his town, rescues him during an in-process assault. Both have secrets that they are afraid to share. Turtle's involves the brother he lost in an accident a few years priors, and Rita's involves her grandmother. Turtle's brother, A.D., has apparently come back from the dead.  He is seeking Turtle's assistance in moving on from this world.  It involves killing a local psychopath who dresses as a teddy bear.  But can the spirit of A.D. be trusted?  

So many things happen in The Secrets of Love and Death. There are several characters that share their POV throughout the novel and each and everyone of them is important to the story. While some of the flashbacks or changes in who's POV it happens to be at the time may seem abrupt, they feed the reader with backstory and very important details and information.

There are also several themes that are explored in The Secrets of Love and Death including bullying, death, grief, and jealousy. Parental grief is a huge theme. Turtle's parents are not dealing with the death of A.D. properly and, in turn, continue to cause anguish to their living son. When A.D. comes back, these feelings of being unwanted are cemented for Turtle after he's implicated in several occurrences.

Jealousy is also touched on and concerns members of Rita's family. Rita's sister-in-law is not a nice person. In an attempt to remove the person she feels is on the receiving end of all of the love and admiration, Elena has Rita sent to her grandmother's house. Abuela, however, is suffering from Alzheimer's disease and Rita moves into a nightmare situation. It's hard to take care of a loved one with Alzheimer's disease - I watched this first hand when my grandmother moved in with my parents - I can only imagine how much harder it would be for a teenager.

The Secrets of Love and Death is a spine-tingling young adult thriller.  I love how E. and Sal were able to weave in several story lines and happenings and connect them all flawlessly.  The connection between all of the characters and all of the events is astounding.  You won't know exactly how each person fits the event or flashback until the perfect time. This novel will have no problem pulling in readers and keeping them engaged in not only the story but the characters, as well. I was on the edge of my throughout.  A Must Read for YA Horror and Paranormal Lovers!

**Please Note:  This book contains adult language.

ARC review copy courtesy of the author, at no cost, in exchange for an honest review.

My Rating:



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