First off, I want to say that there will be spoilers in this review, so you have been warned.
1. THE WRITING
The writing was good, it had a nice flow to it.
2. THE PLAYLISTS
I thought that the playlists at the beginning of each chapter was a unique thing. I liked it, especially when I recognized some of the songs lol.
And now, unfortunately, for the things that bothered me a bit:
3. THE CHARACTERS
I felt that the characters seemed kind of 2 dimensional. You had the popular clique, and the outcast, and the caring, protective aunt.
But I felt that Nerissa was being portrayed more as a stereotypical 14 year old, than as an actual character.
She was obsessed with getting this one role in her school play, and she had been dressing up in different costumes every day for a year in the hopes that the drama teacher would recognize that she could stand out, later finding out that this backfired and had her assigned as the 'Costume Mistress', later deciding/realizing that the drama teacher would never have put her in the play because she wasn't 'pretty' like her nemesis, Gina, who, beyond the 'perfect, mean girl' personality, she had no real substance either, neither did her followers, who never really got much focus, aside from Cori, who was singled out from the beginning as being a former friend of Nerissa's who turned on her to impress Gina.
And while I did sympathize with Nerissa's problems, I just felt that she focused too much on comparing herself to others, dreaming about the 'hottest' guy in school (Also, whenever she mentioned his name, Braden, she would always add a 'sigh' near his name), and being the lead in the play, which she thought would finally get her noticed.
And while, it seems she does display several characteristics of your average teenager, I just felt that she didn't display anything beyond that, which was disappointing.
4. THE PLOT
This is kind of two-sided, because I thought that having the mystery inter-woven and kind of seeping through Nerissa’s obsessive psyche was interesting and well done, but her motivation for wanting to figure out what’s been happening annoyed me. She only wanted to solve the mystery of who’s ‘haunting’ Gina and her groupies, as well as the other popular girls in her school, simply to expose Gina as the culprit and therefore get the lead in the school play.
However, I found this rationalization irritating, as it fed into her obsession with getting the lead and one-upping Gina.
Overall, it wasn't the best story I've ever read, but also not the worst.
The author has a clear voice, and it's possible that this just wasn't my cup of tea.