Friday, May 20, 2011

Review: A Certain Slant of Light by Laura Whitcomb

Title: A Certain Slant of Light 
Author: Laura Whitcomb    
Published: 2005
Source: Bought

Helen is a disembodied spirit who "attaches" herself to humans in order to possess their bodies. Unable to remember the circumstances of her death, and with no idea why she's in this precarious state of limbo, she knows this much: she's been haunting the living world for 130 years.

But when Helen inhabits the body of a high school teacher, everything changes. For though he remains quite unaware of her presence, a certain boy in his class is clearly able to see Helen. This realization, and Helen's subsequent introduction to him, rocks her world.

Uncomfortable with the boundaries of her existence, Helen continues to test them and takes hair-raising risks -- often for love. Moved by her passions, she is stymied by limits placed on her that she doesn't yet understand and is unable to control.

Despite the supernatural realm it explores, A Certain Slant of Light is nothing sort of chilling in its evocation of a world that's starkly real, and a newfound love that's positively sublime. (taken from
This was my third time to read this haunting love story, and I found it just as romantic and mesmerizing as before. I simply cannot get enough of A Certain Slant of Light. I was enchanted by everything about it- the unique plot, the heartbreaking characters, and the vivid descriptions.  

My emotions are always out of control while I'm reading this book. Sometimes I'm sitting there, smiling at the pages like I'm insane and squealing at the cute, honest relationship between James and Helen. Other times I'm depressed and on the verge of tearing up while reading about the cages the characters are trapped in. Every character is faced with a series of personal torments, and it was both painful and inspiring to watch them battle their fears. 

This is not your usual teen romance in many aspects. First of all, the characters are not actually teenagers. Helen and James are both in their late twenties, but they are inhabiting the bodies of teenagers. This makes the characters seem a bit more mature than many teen characters. Also, Helen and James share more passion than your average teen couple. Their unconditional love for each other was breathtaking. Even though both characters know that the other has committed a sin that condemned them to an afterlife stuck on earth, they are willing to love each other despite their mistakes. 

There are also quite a few more explicit scenes in A Certain Slant of Light than in most teen novels. I would definitely recommend this one to older, more mature teens. In my opinion, the slightly graphic scenes added to the pure honesty of the story. It would not be the same without them.

Overall, this is a book I have been and will be recommending to many people. If you are a lover of romance and/or the supernatural, then I would highly suggest checking this one out!


Little Miss Becky said...

I have to agree with everything you've said here! I read this one last year and just loved it, such an amazing book. Great review!

Eliza Mellark said...

I love this book :'( I definitely need to go back and read it.