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Deception (Haunting Emma #1) by Lee Nichols
310 pages
Published June 1st 2010
Buy at Amazon

When Emma Vaile’s parents leave on mysterious business trip, it gives her the perfect excuse to be a rebellious teen. Throw some parties, get a tattoo (or maybe just a piercing), and enjoy the first few weeks of her junior year. Then her best friend stops talking to her, the cops crash her party, and Emma finds herself in the hands of a new guardian–her college-age “knight in J.Crew armor,” Bennett Stern–and on a plane to his museum-like mansion in New England.

After enrolling at Thatcher Academy, Emma settles in by making friends with the popular legacy crowd. But she can’t shake the strange visions that are haunting her. She has memories of Thatcher she can’t explain, as if she’s returning home to a place she’s never been. Emma doesn’t trust anyone anymore–except maybe Bennett. But he’s about to reveal a ghostly secret to Emma. One that will explain the visions . . . and make Emma fear for her life.

Review:

**Excuse my fangirlish nature. It’s hard to contain, but I’m not ashamed. :)

I simply loved this book. Loved it. Not like, love. L. O. V. E. Thank you Lee Nichols for writing such an amazing book!

Deception reminds me of The Mummy in so many ways. If you’ve ever watched The Mummy, you know it has a lot to do with old antiquities, Brendan Fraser, cool reincarnations, Brendan Fraser, mummies, and well, just really awesome things (did I mention Brendan Fraser?). In Deception we get antiquities, mystery, spooky urn/ash scenes, and overall freakin awesomeness! It really combines all the things I love most into a book that’s hard to put down.

Meet Emma, daughter of antiquity sellers and lovers of possessions of the dead, she’s 17 and home alone after her parents disappeared and they haven’t been in contact since. Sounds like the start of some horror movie, right? Who in their right mind leaves a 17 year old in a house that’s a mausoleum, and you only have one employee? Apparently, these parents do. While Emma is home alone she starts having these weird things happen to her. Shadows moving. Reliving other peoples memories. Just thinking about it sends chills up my arms.

Emma is an decent character. She can be annoying at times, like when she’s whining (later on in the book) or obsessing over Bennett. It was a little unbelievable that she up and moved across the country with Bennett when her parents couldn’t be found. She didn’t even question his judgement, hell, she didn’t even know him that well. BUT, when Emma interacts with things-I-shall-not-name, it’s gold. I can’t get enough of her interactions with them. Learning about Emma, learning about her past, learning about, well, everything is just engaging. I am a little disappointed that she fell into the category of heroines that are just too special, specialer that the rest types. I am glad, that she wasn’t the only one that could do what she did though, that saved a bit teeth grinding for me.

Speaking of Bennett, he just doesn’t do anything for me. Don’t get me wrong, he can be sexy at times, but compare him to the Rake (you’ll know who if you read the book) and there is no competition. Bennett is just sort of there. I didn’t really get his ‘voice’ and he didn’t have much page time to compared to other minor characters. He is definitely a mysterious characters and one those types that says, “We can’t be together.” and avoids confrontation- to give him the benefit of the doubt though, he has a really, really, good reason for being that way.

I honestly loved the storyline. It’s constant and continually moves so you don’t get bored. However, I am disappointed that some scenes weren’t more…well, more. I felt that some of the most important scenes could have been fleshed out and expanded. With the way a few of them go by so quick it almost makes you do a double take. Not that they aren’t good, it just could have been better, more drawn out, with added dialogue. The flash backs scenes were amazing though and very, very creepy (as are tons of other scenes and it’s a very, very good thing).

My warning to to those reading Deception- have book two on hand! That ending was absolutely CRAZY! It sent chills up my arms and made me question a certain persons actions. Yes, it’s a cliff hanger. Yes, you will want to pull out your hair. And yes, you will want to immediately find out what happens. Pick this one up, you won’t regret it.

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