Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Burning Blue by Paul Griffin

I find it interesting when two books have a similar premise and yet do something completely different with it. I recently read (and blogged) My Life in Black and White by Natasha Friend. In it, a beautiful teen girl's face is permanently disfigured. Same with this story, but the similarities end there. This poor girl, Nicole, has acid thrown in her face in the school hallway. She has no idea who scarred her face for life or why they would do it.

Nicole does not return to school, but still sees the school psychiatrist. On her first visit, she meets our narrator Jay. She kind of knows who he is since during a pep rally freshman year he had a seizure in front of the whole school that included urinating on himself (and was posted on the web for anyone who missed it). The small connection between them as they wait in the school office causes Jay, a secret hacker, to decide he will figure out who harmed Nicole.

Jay is tall loner with long hair. He and his dad live alone in a shabby apartment on the edge of a school district of mostly wealthy families. He was home schooled after the seizure incident - not that his dad was much help. He returns to school to find it hasn't really changed much, including the bullies.

Jay has numerous suspects, but has trouble narrowing the list. He hacks e-mails, chat rooms, private files and government systems to get what info he needs. He also starts spending time with Nicole. The answers don't come easy, but Jay is willing to risk being arrested to find the perpetrator.

This is well thought out mystery where the answers are never obvious (at least to me). It is trip worth taking. 

For more info about this book, check out the Evergreen library catalog.


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