Thank you so much to Touchstone Books for providing my free copy – all opinions are my own.
Thirteen-year-old Jasper Wishart lives in a world of dazzling color that no one else can see, least of all his dad. Words, numbers, days of the week, people’s voices—everything has its own unique shade. But recently Jasper has been haunted by a color he doesn’t like or understand: the color of murder. Convinced he’s done something terrible to his new neighbor, Bee Larkham, Jasper revisits the events of the last few months to paint the story of their relationship from the very beginning. As he struggles to untangle the knot of untrustworthy memories and colors that will lead him to the truth, it seems that there’s someone else out there determined to stop him—at any cost.
I love a good character-driven story and this one checks all the boxes! Thirteen-year-old Jasper Wishart has synesthesia, which means he sees colors when hearing sounds. Also, he has face blindness or prosopagnosia, so basically he cannot recognize familiar faces, just voices and clothing. It’s an exceptional way to view the world – a dazzling display of color. Unfortunately, his father is struggling to care for him since his mother passed away, as she was the one person who understood him because she also had synesthesia. His vivacious, colorful neighbor, Bee Larkham, who loves birds and keeps parakeets, moves in and Jasper is fascinated. But Bee goes missing and Jasper thinks he sees the color of murder.
The entire story is told by Jasper in first person narrative. It was so interesting to see the world through his eyes and how he reconstructs memories. For some reason my eyes got wider when I read about all of the different connections to colors. The thoughtful details are what make this such an imaginative and creative read. I love the distinct color markers at the head of each chapter and how Jasper perceives things quite literally. I was side-by-side with Jasper through his fears and frustrations which is a testament to great writing. The language is descriptive and beautiful and oh yes, there is a carefully constructed mystery to be solved. What happened to Bee Larkham? Was it something sinister?
My rating is 4 out of 5 stars!
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