Sixteen-year-old Zadie’s first mistake was telling the boy she liked she could bring her dead sister back to life. Her second mistake was actually doing it.
When Zadie accidentally messes with the Reaper’s Rite that should have claimed her sister Mara, things go horribly wrong. Mara isn’t the same anymore—Zadie isn’t even sure she’s completely human, and to top it off, a Reaper is determined to collect Mara’s soul no matter what. Now Zadie must figure out how to defeat her sister’s Reaper, or let Mara die … this time for good.
My Sister’s Reaper reads like a cheesy high school horror movie; in my world, this is a good thing. The action begins when Zadie and her friend Naomi crash a party in a graveyard, evidently that’s where all the cool kids hang out. The conversation conveniently turns from Zadie’s newly dyed black hair to her sister being in a coma. Insert some inner monologue about a schizophrenic mother, a thunderstorm, and some romantic tension while leaning against a mausoleum and BAM — all the makings of a great 80s teen slasher.
Meanwhile, back at school there is a mysterious new kid, talk of the town witch, and Zadie’s revelation (to the readers, not to her friends) that she can will things into existence. I mean, I could hear the “chi-chi-chi-ha-ha-ha” Jason music in the background. Zadie has some confrontations with the mean girls and their cronies until she’s rescued by her crush, and then she channels her inner Ursula and brings her sister out of her coma. Except that her sister died before Zadie resurrected her. Okay, maybe there’s more to it than that, but you’ll have to read to get all the gooey bits I’m leaving out.
Cut-scene. Creepy witch lady gives Zadie a warning and some insight into her true nature. By now, what is blindingly obvious to the readers continues to allude our blissfully naive Zadie. Big sister is wandering around zombie like, mumbling about someone “coming to get her” and making things happen with her mind. Dad decides it’s time for everyone to get some therapy (ya think?) and there’s a love triangle (sort of?) Essentially, the 2nd half of the book is that moment in the horror flick where you’re yelling at the stupid girl to run out the front door instead of upstairs and for the love of all that is sacred, don’t stand in front of an open window!
But all this is the book’s charm. My Sister’s Reaper is unapologetically a fun filled, YA supernatural spook fest. Sure you sort of know how it’s going to end, but the fun is getting there. And there just may be a surprise ending in it for you. So c’mon, it’s October and My Sister’s Reaper makes for a great Halloween read.