Slide by Jill Hathaway
Reviewed by: Middle Sis Jenn
ARC received by Balzer & Bray (Harper Collins)
Release Date: 3-27-2012
The Sisters Say: A breath of fresh air
Vee knows this because she was there. Everyone believes Vee is narcoleptic, but she doesn’t actually fall asleep during these episodes: When she passes out, she slides into somebody else’s mind and experiences the world through that person’s eyes. She’s slid into her sister as she cheated on a math test, into a teacher sneaking a drink before class. She learned the worst about a supposed “friend” when she slid into her during a school dance. But nothing could have prepared Vee for what happens one October night when she slides into the mind of someone holding a bloody knife, standing over Sophie’s slashed body.
Vee desperately wishes she could share her secret, but who would believe her? It sounds so crazy that she can’t bring herself to tell her best friend, Rollins, let alone the police. Even if she could confide in Rollins, he has been acting off lately, more distant, especially now that she’s been spending more time with Zane.
Enmeshed in a terrifying web of secrets, lies, and danger and with no one to turn to, Vee must find a way to unmask the killer before he or she strikes again. (from goodreads.com)
If you have ever found yourself tossed around in a sea of tumultuous trilogies of the same old angels, demons, witches, powers, and other such paranormal phenomenon; then, Slide by Jill Hathaway just might be the life saving breath you need. Don’t get me wrong; I do have a love affair going with certain YA books, but it’s nice to see something new every once in a while.
Jill Hathaway puts an interesting twist on the idea of possession. Instead of possession being dark and evil where the victim always ends up hurt in one way or another, Hathaway uses the idea of possession as something other than a curse. Vee, her protagonist, has narcoleptic episodes where, when she passes out, she slides into the body of another person. The storyline gets interesting when Vee slides into the body of a murderer, standing over Sophie’s (her friend) body with a knife.
I find Vee’s powers interesting because I haven’t seen possession portrayed in this way—where the possessor is the good guy. However, I felt like Hathaway didn’t dig deep enough into Vee’s powers, and I found myself wanting more. I wanted to see her really test her powers, and more importantly, I wanted her to have to rely on her powers in a climactic event—but that event never really came around for me. But, this is only Book 1, so maybe she didn’t wanted to leave something to be discovered about Vee’s powers in future books.
Besides the interesting twist on possession, I liked the dimensions of the characters, mainly Vee’s family. Their family continues to be broken again and again, and I liked to see the real reactions that each character made—they hide from their pain. Instead of facing it dead on (like so many heroes and heroines do), they break down first; and I really felt like their family was believable, like that’s how a real family would react to such tragedy. Because of this, I think Jill Hathaway would be a brilliant contemporary author, but for a paranormal thriller, I was a little bummed.
A lot of the reviews of Slide were positive, saying that it was a twist and turn ride, but for me, it was very predictable. I mean, I knew who the killer was before I was 50 pages into the book, and that’s really depressing for me. I still enjoyed the book because I wanted to see how Vee was going to figure it out (because she, apparently, doesn’t have my gut instinct) and how she was going to save the day.
So overall, this book was interesting and I can see how it would appeal to many readers, but it just wasn’t for me. For me, the interesting powers and dynamic relationships were not enough to override the predictability and anti-climactic ending. If you’re looking for a quick read that’s different from the plethora of angels, demons, and witch books already out there, then give Slide a try. It might surprise you, but at the least, give you a whiff of something different.