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Liv, Forever

Review

Liv, Forever

Liv Bloom has been bounced around the foster care system so much she's never really felt loved, let alone felt comfortable telling anyone she loves them. The only thing she takes solace in is her art, and the art of masters she loves. When she's accepted to Wickham Hall, an exclusive boarding school, she sees it as an escape from foster care and a way to access art resources she'd never have the money to afford.
 
As a scholarship kid among the country's wealthiest teens from the best families, Liv feels less than welcome by her classmates and teachers, with the exception of the kind art teacher who encourages her to take chances with her art, and Malcolm, a handsome, seemingly perfect guy who's interested in her. Everything is wonderful as Liv and Malcolm hang out more and more, telling each other secrets and sharing in each other’s art. Nothing can bring Liv down, not even fellow scholarship kid Gabe’s confession that the campus is haunted and that he can see the ghosts.
 
But everything ends for Liv, from her romance with Malcolm to her future as an artist, when she's murdered in the woods on campus after sneaking out at night to meet Malcolm. Now just another campus ghost, she goes to Gabe for help. They vow to find her murderer, and to do that they'll have to learn why the campus is full of the ghosts of dead girls.
 
Liv's panic at realizing she is a ghost is one of the strongest scenes in the novel; the disbelief and fear she feels seem real.
 
LIV, FOREVER does a good job of faking out the reader as the mystery progresses, misdirecting them and revealing clues at the last moment that takes the suspect out of the running. It also creates a well-drawn picture of the painful reality of a love that can never be --- of being stuck between grief and hope when the person you love is dead and yet somehow still there. Liv's panic at realizing she is a ghost is one of the strongest scenes in the novel; the disbelief and fear she feels seem real.
 
The short back stories of the other ghosts scattered through the novel sometimes seem to be stalling the plot, but as standalone stories they add a lot to the book, peppering in historical background with truly horrifying murders. They make the reader even more eager to solve the mystery and catch the killers.
 
LIV, FOREVER is a novel for anyone who wants a tragic love story with a supernatural twist.

Reviewed by Molly Horan on March 12, 2014

Liv, Forever
by Amy Talkington

  • Publication Date: March 11, 2014
  • Genres: Horror, Youth Fiction
  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Soho Teen
  • ISBN-10: 1616953225
  • ISBN-13: 9781616953225