Mitchard, J. (2013). What we saw at night. NY: Soho Press, Inc.
YA Fiction / Mystery / Contemporary
ARC from NetGalley and Soho Press -- thank you!
QuickNEasy, 272 pages, ages 15-18.
I gave this 2 out of 5 stars on Goodreads. . . if there had been another chapter, I'd probably have given it 5 stars.
So THERE is my gripe. I hate, hate when I'm reading along and a book ends, and -- GUESS WHAT??? -- keep reading for a preview sampler of the next book in the series. HUH? I didn't know there was a next book in the series, and when I saw I still had twelve pages left, I assumed they would include a nice tie-up/resolution/conclusion to the book. Instead, it practically ended mid-sentence. Truly, I thought my reader had frozen or blanked out because there was just no way that was the last sentence of the story.
Until that point, I was thoroughly enjoying this page turner. I had never heard of XP, a condition where a person is allergic to sunlight, so it was really interesting to read how this group of friends lived given they couldn't be in daylight. Their yearning to be wild and free was completely rational -- even more so than an average teenager's yearnings -- and despite their difference from the norm, many of the same issues with trust, relationships, and friendship are there.
But all is not quiet in the nights of this small town. There is murder (or is there?) and mystery and danger around corners. Yes, there are some improbable situations (namely that a teenaged girl would keep a secret from her best friend for so many years) and there are plenty of times the reader must suspend the disbelief and not think things through too thoroughly. Even so, it was entertaining and hopefully will correct its shortcomings in book two, What We Lost in the Dark.
On the Clean-O-Meter, it's probably about a 6.5. There is teen sex (though not explicit), though it is safe sex. There are some swear words s**t and its derivatives, and of course, though there are murders (or are there??) they are not explicit, explained, or graphic in any way.