Author: Katie Alender
Release date: September 30, 2014
Published by: Point/Scholastic
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Willa has just moved to California with her mom, a widow, and new stepfather, a Hollywood movie director. She has been keeping some big secrets from her mom ever since her dad died. In fact, one of those secrets is the fact that she has been trying to contact him almost every night using a method she learned in a book. This has led to Willa seeing strange shadows, having odd hallucinations, and generally questioning her sanity.
Throughout the story, I love Willa’s snarky attitude. One of my favorite lines is from the third page of the book: “Jonathan unlocked the dead bolt. ‘The door’s original,’ he said, sounding proud--as if a plank of wood lasting almost a hundred years was somehow a credit to human ingenuity and not, you know, trees” (3). Willa is smart and sassy which is one way she hides her vulnerability. Shortly into the story, she begins to have some serious visions about the women killed by the serial killer hounding L.A. She struggles to accept what she is seeing, especially since she has built many walls to keep people out and no longer has anyone to confide in...until Wyatt Sheppard, who is investigating the killings as a school project.
This is one emotional story. Not only will you be reeling from Willa’s ups and downs, but you will also have to take deep breaths as you experience ghostly encounters with her, and endanger your life beside Willa’s on the hunt for the serial killer. And while I was able to figure out the killer pretty quickly, I still enjoyed the ride with Willa.
I was reading the book this weekend and tried to read it before bed...bad idea. I had to slam the book closed right in the middle of a potential “scary ghost” moment as I lay a snuggly in my bed; otherwise, sleep would have eluded me. Then I finished it Sunday morning in the bright daylight ;)
If you enjoyed Katie Alender’s Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer then get your hands on Famous Last Words. It’s definitely worth a read.