Review: Clarity by Kim Harrington

Posted July 24, 2012 by chooseyabooks in reviews / 0 Comments

Clare isn’t like the other teenagers in her tourist town in Cape Cod. Her family are psychics and she receives visions of the past from objects she touch others have touched.

Then a girl is murdered in a motel, a tourist, and suddenly the quiet town is in uproar and Clare’s ex’s family need her help and her gift. Clare is asked to unofficially help the new Detective’s son, Gabriel, who seemed to like her until he found she was a psychic.  Not only this but her brother’s behaviour has become suddenly suspicious and he admits he knew the girl and may be a suspect. Clare needs to clear his name quickly and so her assistance in the investigation becomes even more important.

I love crime and paranormal novels, so mixing the two together is always a brilliant combination for me. I loved the idea of Clare’s ability and it reminded me a little of a series I’d loved when I was twelve called Fingerprints by Francine Pascal where the narrator could hear thoughts from fingerprints.  Obviously, the two books were very different but both featured an ability you couldn’t control; something that a single touch of any object might trigger. I think, and I’m sure I’m not alone, this is probably one of the most scary abilities I could imagine because of the lack of control over it you might have. I really loved Clare’s struggles with her abilities and how it hadn’t enhanced her life, but actually made being a teenager more difficult. Clare was a great narrator; she was sassy and brave and carried the novel very well.

I can’t lie, the romantic development between Gabriel and Clare was well-written, but I wanted something to happen with Nate more. It’s a pattern I’ve noticed I’ve found recently in YA that a character not written as the primary, or even secondary, romantic interest compels me the most. It might just be me, or because I felt there was more chemistry and potential to explore the less obvious relationship. I did however really like that Gabriel was not happy Clare was a psychic and did judge her for this, as if he had been accepting straight away it would have lost credibility. I also found the interactions with Clare’s ex, Justin, interesting and a realistic portrayal of their situation as he has made a huge mistake and she struggles to come to terms with whether she should forgive and take him back or not.

Overall, this was fast-paced and a quick fun read that immersed me in Clare’s life very well and I really enjoyed. There was a fair balance between the crime and romantic developments, which I really appreciated. Sometimes, I’ve found books can be too heavy on the romance, when they are perhaps intended to be more focused on the other plot, ie. crime, etc, but this book reached a satisfying equilibrium between the two.

Harrington beautifully evoked the tourist towns in Massachusetts and Cape Cod with the town of Eastport. Though I’ve never been anywhere like there, I felt the town was real and I had a brilliant visual picture and map in my head as I read it.

I will definitely be looking out for more books from Kim Harrington and eagerly await the next book in the series. I received a free proof from the lovely people at Scholastic. Thank you so much! Clarity is available to buy now and comes highly recommended!

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