The Deepest Cut (MacKinnon Curse #1) by J.A. Templeton
Sixteen-year-old Riley Williams has been able to see ghosts since the car crash that took her mother’s life and shattered her family. Guilt-ridden over the belief that she’s somehow responsible for her mom’s death, Riley is desperate to see her mother’s elusive spirit to gain her forgiveness.
When her father moves the family to Scotland so they can all start over, Riley believes her life couldn’t get worse––that is until the ghost of nineteen-year-old Ian MacKinnon catches her purposely cutting herself. An uneasy truce quickly turns into friendship, and soon Riley’s falling hard for Ian.
Riley believes her gift could help Ian end the curse that has kept him tied to the land for centuries, but that would mean letting him go forever and she’s not sure she is strong enough to do that. As if her life wasn’t complicated enough, the spirit of the woman who killed Ian returns and she’ll stop at nothing to keep Riley from helping Ian find eternal peace
Although there is a ghost story within these pages (a rather interesting one at that) I really enjoyed the story because of Riley. She's lost her mother recently in a car crash. She feels responsible for the accident and has begin cutting herself as a result to "ease the pain" I think that combining a very common factor in contemporary teen reads today along with the supernatural element of ghosts made the story unique and interesting.
Riley finds comfort in Ian. He wants to get rid of the bond that keeps him tied to Earth, he wants to be able to move on, and Riley finds a friend in Ian and wants to help. It was sad in a way that by doing a good thing by helping Ian, Riley also loses the one thing that she has been able to connect to since her mother's death.
The ghost element is not scary, but more edgy or creepy at most.
I am not a huge fan of contemporary or romantic teen reads, but I am a huge fan of ghost stories and I think this combination worked well here.
I think that the added factor that Riley had against her trying to hide her cutting was the fact that there was always a possibility that Ian was witnessing what she was doing to herself. In my opinion this added aspect made her really think about what she was doing in the eyes of somebody else. Most self mutilation is done in private, it's a stress reliever, but here she has this constant nagging of eyes always on her, it would sure make one take a deeper look at what they are doing if it's done publicly. But I am getting off course here.
I enjoyed all of the characters, even the evil Laria and hope to see a continuation of Kade's story..in the next book? Let's HOPE So!