"While I existed, the number existed. I was the number and the number was me."
My Rating: 7/10
The story is definitely unique and fresh (which was why I bought it...) but the interaction between Jem and Spider could definitely be improved...Good book! :)
You'd think that Jem is just the ordinary wallflower, the kind that skips the class and avoid social structures. The kind that would grow up just like her failure mother, a junkie who never cared about her own daughter.
It's true Jem doesn't understand most people, but the real reason why she avoids people (specifically eye contact) is because that she sees a set of numbers. At first when she keeps blurting out the numbers in front of her mother, she of course didn't have a clue what was it all about.
Then her mother died.
The date was the numbers she sees in people's eyes. Jem avoids friends and relationships. Why not? People already think she's trashed anyway.
Then there's Spider, who always gets in Jem's face because Spider's crazy like that. Slowly and unconsciously, their friendship grew (to love eventually, too) and Jem had seen Spider's numbers. It was less than 2 months.
Throughout the book Jem finds herself in trouble to decide if she would like to stay and befriend Spider or just back off; she is very capricious. She changes her mind quickly and she dislike to show weakness.
What I like about the book:
The story and the idea (obviously). The characters are realistic and the way Rachel Ward conveys Jem's frustration is extraordinary.
What I don't really like:
Sometimes Jem's thoughts can really get too frustrating and tedious.
Rachel Ward's website.