I don t think I would have read this book if it wasn t recommended to me I am just not that into ghosts However this book is so much than that It is about love and finding peace and happiness in your after life The motives of forbidden and impossible love and body snatching reminded me strongly of certain Stephenie Meyer novels we all know, but SM s books seem to a be pile of mediocrity in comparison to A Certain Slant of Light The depth of feeling SM failed to achieve in 3000 pages of fluff prose is achieved by Laura Whitcomb in 300 I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in quality literature. In The Class Of The High School English Teacher She Has Been Haunting, Helen Feels Them For The First Time In Years, Human Eyes Are Looking At Her They Belong To A Boy, A Boy Who Has Not Seemed Remarkable Until Now And Helen Terrified, But Intrigued Is Drawn To Him The Fact That He Is In A Body And She Is Not Presents This Unlikely Couple With Their First Challenge But As The Lovers Struggle To Find A Way To Be Together, They Begin To Discover The Secrets Of Their Former Lives And Of The Young People They Come To Possess I started this book the day the world ended No, not in a literal 2012 tsunami earthquake kinda way, but in a my cell phone and laptop just so happened to break on the same day kinda way And when you are a 17 year old girl, that is really, really bad So while I was rolling around on the ground suffering from texting withdrawl, a thought occurred to me Go read a book, you idjit So I did And in no time at all, I forgot the outside world existed To say I loved this book would be a severe understatement So here is a list of adjectives I feel are adequate descriptions courtesy of Dictionary.com and my own unique vocabulary Awesome, addicting, seductive, intense, articulate, lush, fantasmic, suspenseful, beautiful, poetic, dark, amazing, unique, mysterious, romantic, excellent, gorgeous, wistful, eerie, superb, breathtaking, magnificent, wonderful, fascinating, Gothic, OMG, astounding, perfect, sublime, tender, painful, and last but not least, Jesus So, in short, it was damn good I just loved everything about it The luscious writing, painfully real characters, intriguing premise and hushed tone Everything, especially the ending, was just perfect As soon as I was finished with it, I wanted to start it all over again and I very nearly did Initially, I thought this book would scare the crap out of me, with the creepy cover and all I read Laura Whitcomb s book The Fetch first, and I loved it, even though this novel is universally loved So perhaps I was biased going into it But I m positive I would have loved it no matter the scenario As for the SEQUEL OMG SQUEAAAALLL , I don t think it s really needed, but hey, I ll devour it anyway I m a little worried it won t be as good as Certain Slant seeing as most unplanned sequels aren t, but even if its half as good, I ll still love it. Opening LineSomeone was looking at me, a disturbing sensation if you re deadThis is one of the best books that I ve read in a long time And although it s being touted as YA this can absolutely be enjoyed by adults and as one I ll be recommending it to all my friends It s just a beautiful story of fated romance no matter what your age A CERTAIN SLANT OF LIGHT tells the story of a girl named Helen who s been dead for a 130 years She is now a ghost or light as the author calls her existence In order to keep from plunging into hell Helen must cling to a human host, never leaving their side She has had many hosts over her years, her latest being Mr.Brown, an English teacher It s in his classroom that she meets James, the first person able to see her since she died.James was light until recently when he took over the body of his host during his drug overdose Helen and James begin meeting and quickly fall in love Eventually James convinces Helen that she should also inhabit a host so that they can both be human and together they choose Jenny The only problem with Jenny is that her parents are religious fanatics and James s host Billy is a former drug addict with questionable friends This makes living their hosts lives and maintaining a relationship kinda tricky The writing here is beautiful and the story original and interesting The obstacles our lovers have to face as they try to find their HEA are incredible This book had me up late at night and I will be thinking about it for a long time to come Highly recommended for all ages Cheers 2 1 2 starsOne of my dearest friends once told me that she does not brush her teeth or do any other hygiene related activities in front of her husband because she wants topreserve the mysteryWhat mystery That your teeth get dirty when you eat and they need to be cleaned I like and respect this friend, but it s little comments like that one which gradually led me to realize that we have completely different views on what is or isn t romantic I am of a warts and all romance appreciator Chivalry, modesty, flowery overtures all just feels like putting lipstick on a pig If you don t love someone s warty, flawed, awkward side, then do you really love him or her at all I guess that s the main part of this book that fails to resonate with me The romance feels shallow These characters have each accumulated over a century of experience on Earth, being human and following humans, and yet they both feel like children.Maybe some of this can be explained by their mutual non living status I can almost get my brain realigned with this view and buy into parts of this story Both of these characters have little memory, and they re disconnected and alone to begin with Apparently they both died in their late twenties, but they don t remember anything about it When given the chance to experience life and companionship again essentially by taking over the bodies of young souls who have fled don t even ask me how that actually works , they jump on it without really thinking over the consequences I think that s very understandable, but as the time passes, I don t feel that they really stop to consider the ramifications of what they re doing to these bodies It feels selfish and callous, especially given the ending view spoiler It seems that the author is hinting quite strongly the menstruation calendar comment, the fainting, the nausea, the fluttering that Jenny is pregnant How are these two young people, who barely know each other and have extremely different histories, going to manage a pregnancy Jenny is only fifteen years old And the whole meeting between Jenny and Billy at the end feels so contrived and forced It is as if she s saying, oh, don t worry, it s okay, because these kids totally would have approved of their bodies being used No hide spoiler Well, if I had one word to describe this book it would be Weird It is definitely weird and maybe a bit disturbing if you really thing about it view spoiler They basically take 2 bodies and have sex with them Haha hide spoiler What a difficult, beautiful and fascinating book It wasn t riveting or necessarily suspenseful, although it was filled with incredibly unique descriptions from a ghost s point of view, that if I didn t know any better, I would sincerely believe the author actually spent time as one Helen is a ghost and for the first time in 130 years, human eyes are looking at her Those eyes belong to a boy who has not seemed remarkable until now Helen is terrified and also unnerved by the fact that he can see her but she also finds herself incredibly intrigued She is immediately drawn to him and discovers his name is, James The fact that he is in a body and she is not presents this preposterous couple with their first challenge Now, the two of them struggle to find a way to be together as they begin to discover the secrets of their former lives and also of the young people they come to possess.If you re reading the synopsis of this story or even describing it to someone, it actually sounds a little hokey However, it works and on so many different levels and is a story of forgiveness and ultimate healing for the dead and the living The author intertwines modern day dysfunction with 130 year old history, to develop a surreal yet difficult to imagine kindredship amoungst her hero and heroine all the while making it believable I did, however, wish Whitcomb had devoted pages to the romance between Helen and James but the time they did spend together was beautifully written.This is not a feel good story it s unapologetically heavy and attempts to send a message It s left up to the reader to decipher what to hold on to and what to walk away with. This is a book I ve had sitting on my shelf for over a year, I d heard plenty of good things about it but still remained sceptical about the whole ghosts romance thing Eh, really Ghosts are somewhere down near zombies on the sexiness scale, could I really become invested in such a relationship Apparently yes, but these ghosts have found a way around the whole touching predicament and wasted no time getting back into it by possessing the bodies of people whose souls have abandoned them.I have read some of the negative reviews on A Certain Slant of Light and the thing most often pointed out is something which usually annoys me the way Helen and James fall so quickly in love and have sex after only meeting each other a few times The reason this whiff of insta didn t bother me so much in this case is because I was sold on the idea of their loneliness, the pain Helen felt in watching so many people grow, have fun and die whilst she can never be a part of their lives it led me to understand why these two lost and lonely souls would latch onto one another straight away and cling together to find what they ve been missing for so many years I could believe in the desperation.And that s all I really want to understand It s why I m turned off by insta love and destiny bound lovers, because that s tell , not show and it s empty In this novel, Laura Whitcomb gives me what I need to care about the couple, whilst maintaining a beautiful and slightly creepy atmosphere.However, this story it still far than just a romance Helen and James are haunted by a few scattered and incomplete memories of their past and they must put the pieces together to remember who they are, how they died, and what holds them in this strange limbo But will the truths of their past be too much to handle Or will they finally get some peace As well as this, they also begin to discover why the souls of their host bodies have abandoned ship, what it was in their lives that made them give up.James possesses the body of a drug addict who s been in trouble with the police multiple times and lives alone with his temperamental brother With both parents gone, the two young men struggle along by themselves Helen, on the other hand, possesses the body of a teenage girl who s parents are extremely religious right away we are introduced to the abortion is murder bumper stickers they have prayer time and read the Bible every night before bed As events unfold, it becomes clear that not everything is as holy as it seems in this family and, though it may not be the main part of the story, this subplot about religious hypocrisy was quite brilliant and a little scary.I recommend this for paranormal fans who enjoy something a bit out of the ordinary I wrote sceptical in another review and a really nice person told me to learn how to spell So, just to let you know, this is actually the correct spelling in Britain I m British Just thought I d save trolls some typing time. What a disappointing read this was After seeing all the high ratings for this including my own daughter s 4 star rating , I was eagerly anticipating a unique and touching ghost story Sad to say, nothing in this story touched me in any way, and in fact it s one of the worst books I ve read in 2011 so far, filled with ham fisted stereotypes and unbelievable character actions.Whitcomb actually had a fairly interesting premise starting out Helen, a young woman dead for 150 years, makes her way out of purgatory hell and cleaves to a succession of human hosts Helen haunts them until they die, and then finds another to stay with They are never aware of her, however, so Helen stays in this static limbo for over a century Her current host is a senior high English teacher, Mr Brown, and it is in his class that she realizes that there is, in fact, someone who sees her.This is where the story disintegrated into a cliched, stereotypical YA teen angst drama I am supposed to swallow the idea that Helen, a post civil war young lady, and James, a WWI doughboy who died 85 years ago and now inhabits a 17 year old stoner boy s body, meet and instantly fall in lovelove, really how about lustand consumate their physical relationship after only a day or so Riiiiiiiiight Guess all those decades in limbo does crazy things for the libido,regardless of the time period and social s that Helen and James lived inAnd we all know that teenagers just can t control their sexual urges and will do the deed with anyone, anytime, anywhere And it makes it especially cool that Helen now inhabits the 15 year old body of a virgin whose parents fulfil every cliche of religious nut cases,cause of course that gives this book that push the envelope kind of edginess that it needs to attract teensI found this entire section of the story trite and melodramatic, and it didn t do anything to further what might have been an interesting story about death, the afterlife and the premise of haunting In essence, it became just another bad piece of YA fiction, filled with foul language, inappropriate sex scenes and cliched stereotypes of teenagers and religious people.Promising beginning Interesting final pages Utter dreckage in between.