20 April 2012

Review: Ultraviolet

Ultraviolet by R.J. Anderson
Publication date: September 1, 2011
Publisher: Carolrhoda Books
Once upon a time there was a girl who was special.

This is not her story.

Unless you count the part where I killed her.

Sixteen-year-old Alison has been sectioned in a mental institute for teens, having murdered the most perfect and popular girl at school. But the case is a mystery: no body has been found, and Alison's condition is proving difficult to diagnose. Alison herself can't explain what happened: one minute she was fighting with Tori -- the next she disintegrated. Into nothing. But that's impossible. Right?

What a different and enjoyable read this was! I don't think I've ever experienced anything like it. I'd tell you more, but then I'd be spoiling it for you. This is one of those books that one must go into knowing nothing more than the publisher generated plot description.

First, I was like "Oh, mental institution book! I like!" Then I was like "Heeellooo, doctor." Then I reached little more than the halfway point and was like "HUBBA WHAAA?" <---my reaction through the rest of the book. Ultraviolet isn't what you think it is.

It is obvious that R.J. Anderson did her research on synesthesia and psychiatric institutions. Serious research. I found Alison and the other patients at the hospital to be incredibly three-dimensional and the environment was well used. Anderson blends Alison's condition perfectly with the story. If taken out of it, the book would be something completely different. I just found the whole book to be something fascinating and intense and I couldn't put it down. Stupid work prevented me from reading it in one sitting.

I apologize for the not-so-detailed review, but I think most people, whether they liked Ultraviolet or not, would recommend that it be read without knowing much about it (again, correct me if I'm wrong). I loved it and I can't wait for the sequel! Check this one out if you feel like you've been reading the same YA over and over again.


  1. You're totally right to stay a bit vague on this one! The last third of this (you know the twist I'm talking about!) was mind-blowing. I didn't see it coming at all and I wasn't sure how I felt about the addition at first. I'm hoping to re-read before next year's sequel (which I so wish was coming this year instead!).

  2. I'm coming right now to read this. Right. Now.

  3. I didn't love this book, but I appreciated it that for once, it seemed like an author did serious research about mental disorders before actually writing about them. For me, that was the best part of the book.

  4. @Jessi: So glad I wasn't the only one who's mind was blown. I want the sequel now!

    @Rienadire: I'm sorry to disappoint you in my not having a physical copy of the book. Now you'll have to go to the library! ;P

    @Kelly: I imagine her desk cluttered with filled notebooks and papers here and there. Very good research was done for the this book and it was all very well integrated.


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