~ Half a life is not worth living. ~
Half-Life by Tina Ferraro
Publisher: Leap Books
Release date: March 24th, 2015
Goodreads link: (click here)
Probably not a good idea to take advice from your dead twin sister. High school sophomore Trisha Traynor and friends have played the Halloween mirror game for years, the one that’s supposed to show a glimpse of the guy they’ll marry. But no one’s ever seen anything.
Until tonight—when Trisha is gob smacked by the candlelit arrival of her long-deceased twin sister, instead of her crush, Kirk Maxwell.
In a voice and vision that only Trisha can hear and see, Chessie claims to be back on a compassionate journey. Trisha fears she's gone nuthouse crazy. But she nonetheless follows the instructions Chessie outlines in their nightly conversations, until she finds herself stepping across some ethical lines, and probably ending all chances with Kirk.
When a sisterly showdown ensues, resulting in the shattering of the mirror, Chessie’s gone again, and a heartsick Trisha sets about righting her recent wrongs. That is, until she stumbles upon the real reason Chessie had come back and the most important glimpse yet that the mirror could never predict.
Blurb: Our mouths made a perfect fit. Like they’d been created for this very reason. His hand cupped the back of my neck, and for one incredible moment, I couldn’t think, couldn’t breathe. I could only feel. Suddenly I knew I would always remember this as my first kiss.
When I first read the synopsis and the blurb, I was kind of expecting a spooky ghost story, but what I got was a whole lot more. I was very pleasantly surprised by Half-Life! Yes, it does have the ghosty-creepy factor, but it's also very sweet and will appeal to those who enjoy contemporary romance. The main themes are actually friendship, family, healing and forgiveness. When the story begins, Tricia is debating whether or not she should continue the friendship with her estranged best friend, Abby. Lately, things haven't been the same between them because Abby spends all of her time with, and focuses all of her attention on, her boyfriend. This often results in Tricia being left behind. When Chessie first appears, Tricia believes that she came back to help repair their friendship, but as Chessie askes her to do things, she begins to wonder what exactly her true motive is. Tricia is also facing intense peer pressure from older girls, but the fact that they are paying attention to her sort of makes up for the loss of Abby. Things at home are also tense because nobody ever really got over the death of Chessie all those years ago. Tricia also spends so much time worried about living up to everyone else's expectations that she forgets to live her life for herself. It just might take a ghost to teach her how precious life really is and how important it is not to waste it.
Half-Life is a very delightful novella that I devoured in one sitting. I didn't mean to, but I really didn't want to stop reading it once I started. It's about 100 pages long, so it's not quite a full novel, but it's longer than a short story. There's enough to it that you won't just blow through it too quickly (unless you get totally sucked in like I did), but it's not a huge commitment. The price is currently set at $1.99 (as of 3/20/15 - check price before buying), and that's an excellent value for this fun story! This would even make a wonderful mother/daughter read. It teaches lessons about peer pressure and friendship and it explores relationships between parents and teens. There's also a sweet & swoon-worthy romance. Half-Life is a ghost story with a positive message and it gives you a lot to think about.
Where to buy:
About the Author:
Tina Ferraro has been writing since she learned to hold a pencil, and sold upwards of a hundred short stories to national magazines before turning to novels. She is the author of three Random House novels, The ABC’s of Kissing Boys, How to Hook a Hottie and Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress, which have received distinctions such as the ABA Book Sense Award and two RITA nominations.
Her fourth YA, The Starter Boyfriend, has spent time on Amazon’s Top 100 Lists. She lives in Los Angeles with her rocket scientist husband, two cats and whichever of their three young adult children is in town. When not writing, she enjoys playing Facebook Scrabble, swimming, and chasing coyotes out of her neighborhood.
Visit Tina Ferraro:Twitter: https://twitter.com/PromMom3