Expected publication: March 27th 2012 by Balzer + Bray
Vee Bell is certain of one irrefutable truth—her sister’s friend Sophie didn’t kill herself. She was murdered.
Vee knows this because she was there. Everyone believes Vee is narcoleptic, but she doesn’t actually fall asleep during these episodes: When she passes out, she slides into somebody else’s mind and experiences the world through that person’s eyes. She’s slid into her sister as she cheated on a math test, into a teacher sneaking a drink before class. She learned the worst about a supposed “friend” when she slid into her during a school dance. But nothing could have prepared Vee for what happens one October night when she slides into the mind of someone holding a bloody knife, standing over Sophie’s slashed body.
Vee desperately wishes she could share her secret, but who would believe her? It sounds so crazy that she can’t bring herself to tell her best friend, Rollins, let alone the police. Even if she could confide in Rollins, he has been acting off lately, more distant, especially now that she’s been spending more time with Zane.
Enmeshed in a terrifying web of secrets, lies, and danger and with no one to turn to, Vee must find a way to unmask the killer before he or she strikes again.
Slide has been described as a thrilling mystery, emphasis on the mystery part. I have to agree - it's almost impossible to guess who the killer is, and when you do find out, it's a complete surprise - but one that makes sense.
I love the idea of sliding, and the way Jill Hathaway explains it is perfect. It's so easy to understand, as opposed to a lot of YA books lately that spend pages describing something odd about the character but never really explain it in a way where it makes sense.
However, Slide is a very short and quick read, and while sometimes that's a good thing, I don't think it really worked for this. In a longer novel, the tension could have been built up better. Not only is the romance between Vee and Zane entirely too rushed, in my opinion, but the murders are, too. If it had been longer, there could have been a few more clues. The mystery could have been so much more intense and exciting.
In terms of characters, most of the students at Vee's school simply annoyed me. Their dialogue seemed unrealistic, like Hathaway was trying too hard to make them sound like snotty popular teenagers. Vee herself was an okay character, for the most part, though I feel as if we never got to know her well enough for me to form an opinion. The same goes for Vee's best friend, Rollins - an intriguing character that I didn't mind but don't know enough about.
Overall: I feel like Slide has so much unfulfilled potential simply because the entire book was squeezed into less than 300 pages. Every moved a little too fast for me, and while the killer was a complete surprise for me, the suspense wasn't built up well enough. 2.5 stars.