320p. Page Street. Sept. 2018. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781624145971.
Gr 9 Up—Camryn Kingfisher is a 16-year-old girl with a panic disorder and a psychiatrist mother to walk her through it. Being too panicked to make her way to her mother's office on a U.S. army base saves her life when there's an explosion, resulting in her mother's death. The Agency blames it on Camryn's mother and accuses Camryn of being part of the conspiracy. She abandons her father and races to avoid vicious mobs while she searches for answers. Camryn's wounds heal too quickly; her home, intact hours before, has fallen into disrepair; and her brother is different each time she sees him. Plus, she can't explain a handsome specter—if that is what he is—who calls himself Quint and can't move more than ten feet away from her. What keeps readers turning pages—even when the story becomes super dense—is the thrill of Camryn finding hidden strength and leaping hurdle after hurdle. The ending combines a unique mixture of banality and wonder. Hughes achieves a compelling story, authentic characters, and enough mystery to captivate teens without losing them in the science. The figurative writing enhances the action, and humor allows for needed lighter moments in the midst of hardship.
VERDICT This tale deserves a prominent place on sci-fi shelves.

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