Blur by Steven James

Posted May 15, 2014 by Lillian in Reviews / 1 Comment

I received this book via Netgalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of this review.

Blur by Steven JamesBlur by Steven James
Series: Blur Trilogy #1
Published by Skyscape on May 27, 2014
Length: 368 pages
Reviewing eARC from Netgalley

The isolated town of Beldon, Wisconsin, is shocked when a high school freshman’s body is found in Lake Algonquin. Just like everyone in the community, sixteen-year-old Daniel Byers believes that Emily Jackson’s death was accidental. But at her funeral, when he has a terrifying vision of her, his world begins to rip apart at the seams.

Convinced that Emily’s appearance was more than just a mere hallucination, Daniel begins to look carefully into her death, even as he increasingly loses the ability to distinguish fantasy from reality.

What’s real? What’s not? Where does reality end and madness begin?

As Daniel struggles to find the truth, his world begins to crumble around him as he slips further and further into his own private blurred reality.

Full of mind-bending twists and turns, Blur launches a new trilogy of young adult thrillers from Steven James, a master of suspense.

Blur by Steven James is a fast-paced, suspenseful, slightly paranormal crime novel for the young adult readers. Blur begins with the main character Daniel Byers going to the funeral of a not-so-well-known freshman from his high school. Emily was missing for two days when her body was found in a lake and it was ruled an accidental drowning. Daniel believes it, that is until at the funeral Emily talks to him. So begins Daniel’s downward spiral into insanity as he tries to uncover the truth behind Emily’s death.

So I really enjoyed this book. It’s fast-paced and kept me guessing right up to the very end. It centers around Emily’s death and the what really happened to her. The author does a wonderful job of giving just enough information that as the reader you think you know what happened. Then another piece of evidence comes along and shocks you and sends you in another direction. I can honestly say that I had no clue what happened to Emily or if she was murdered who did it until the very end when it is revealed. Which if you know me is an amazing feet!

I also liked the characters. Daniel is an atypical high school junior. He’s captain of the football team and star quarterback, but he is also extremely intelligent. Something his best friend Kyle likes to test on a regular basis is giving Daniel a complicated math problem and Daniel spits out the correct answer every time while Kyle is plugging it into his calculator. He’s like Rainman without the social stigma. So when Daniel starts seeing, hearing, and feeling Emily, he freaks out and rightfully so. I mean he’s hallucinating, right? At least that’s what he thinks. And probably half of the book deals with him struggling to decide what is real and what is not. He even goes as far as to research what could be wrong with him. It’s kinda sad.

Besides Daniel, there’s his Dad the sheriff, Kyle his best friend, his spunky girlfriend Mia, Nicole, and the new-girl Stacy Clern. The characters are written so believably. I easily found myself identifying with them on some level, either they reminded me of kids I went to school with or of me, which is awesome! Kyle is the polar opposite of Daniel, yet stands by him even when Daniel thinks he is going nuts. Stacy, Daniel’s crush, is mysterious and doesn’t really reveal herself until the end.

Overall I highly recommend this book. It has a little bit for everyone, suspense, action, crime, and some paranormal elements, even a little romance. It’s geared for the young adult audience and surprisingly despite some mild violence it’s a clean read (((happy dance))). So if you enjoy crime mysteries with a bit of paranormal thrown in, I highly recommend you get a copy of this book. It is well-worth the read!

About Steven James

Steven James is the best selling author of more than three dozen books, including the Patrick Bowers and Jevin Banks thriller series. In May 2014 he released the first book of his teen suspense trilogy, Blur, and a book on the craft of novel writing, Story Trumps Structure. Steven’s other works span a variety of genres including non fiction, fantasy and drama. He has received wide critical acclaim including two Publishers Weekly starred reviews, three Christy Awards, and as a finalist for an International Thriller Award. Publishers Weekly calls him "[A] master storyteller at the peak of his game."

Steven is an active member of International Thriller Writers, the Authors Guild, Mystery Writers of America, and International Association of Crime Writers. He is also a contributing editor for Writer's Digest. He has a master's degree in storytelling and has taught writing and creative communication around the world. When he's not writing or speaking, you'll find him trail running, rock climbing, or drinking a dark roast coffee near his home in eastern Tennessee.

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