Inbetween by Tara Fuller

Publication Date: August 28th, 2012
Entangled Teen
Format: Paperback, 313 pages
RATING: 4 out of 5 Stars
Since the car crash that took her father’s life three years ago, Emma’s life has been a freaky — and unending — lesson in caution. Surviving “accidents” has taken priority over being a normal seventeen-year-old, so Emma spends her days taking pictures of life instead of living it. Falling in love with a boy was never part of the plan. Falling for a reaper who makes her chest ache and her head spin? Not an option.
It’s not easy being dead, especially for a reaper in love with a girl fate has put on his list not once, but twice. Finn’s fellow reapers give him hell about spending time with Emma, but Finn couldn’t let her die before, and he’s not about to let her die now. He will protect the girl he loves from the evil he accidentally unleashed, even if it means sacrificing the only thing he has left…his soul.

 The Gist: A reaper who’d fallen in love with a soul, initially condemned to live for eternity as a shadow. But at the spur of the moment, the reaper tossed her soul to be rebirthed into another body. Years later, the reaper found her, stuck with her, stalked  guarded her, which consequently made for a nearly impossible romantic liaison between reaper and human.

The plot sounds so achingly familiar; but no matter how hard I try to place it, it’s just not coming to me. It resonates a mix between a book about the grimm reaper and a book about angels. Perhaps that’s way I can’t really figure out which particular book it reminded me of. But it doesn’t matter anyway, because Tara Fuller gave this formulaic paranormal goodness enough spin for her to OWN it.

For the last two years since her father’s death, Emma’s life has been a circle of evading inevitable death and loneliness beyond words. The “accidents” that plagued her since and the uncanny way she survived them all seemed too convenient. And who wants to be associated with a girl who’s had a history of mental health problems? No one, that’s who. Well, no one but her best friend Cash and the ghost/ reaper/ guardian angel who followed her around without her knowledge.

When Mauve, the restless soul intent on killing Emma, got too dangerously close to succeeding, Finn had no choice but to appear before Emma as the living boy he used to be. It was a chance to touch, to feel in an act so forbidden that it could only amount to a brief stint in hell. But like a stubborn boy who knows what he wants and not care about the consequences, he persisted. The result? Well, disastrous and almost fatal.

I dare you to read this and not fall in love with Finn – a tortured hero who had to “live” with the consequences of his decision. On second thought, I dare you to read this and not fall in love with Cash: hot, artistic mess without the angst – loved him! But hey, don’t fret. There’s no love triangle here. In fact, you’ll thank Tara later for giving us two boys to drool over. For the first time in never, I actually wished there was.

Emma wasn’t chopped liver either. Sure you’ll find her a bit meek at times but you could hardly blame the girl. With dreams of a past life plaguing her at night and accidents meant to terrorize and well, kill her, I wasn’t surprised at all that she’s a terrified little thing. And though her solutions for getting rid of the evil ghost intent on harming her were comical to say the least (sage and a chant. REALLY?), you can’t knock the girl for trying.

My complaint? The ending. It was a dog’s breakfast, in my opinion. I have to re-read to understand all the soul-switcheroos that transpired [shrugs].

VERDICT: Tara Fuller’s initial offering to a brand new series will sure to make your heart go thu-thump for the sweet romance and on hyperspeed for the death-defying chases that Emma has gone through. I think Tara did a marvelous job of marrying two tried and tested story arcs that has been popular in the YA genre.  Considering how bored I have been with angels and death books lately, I was pretty surprised that I loved this as much as I did.

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