by Jen Nadol
Cassandra Renfield has always seen the mark—a glow around certain people reminiscent of candlelight. But the one time she mentioned it, it was dismissed as a trick of the light. Until the day she watches a man awash in the mark die. After searching her memories, Cassie realizes she can see a person’s imminent death. Not how or where, only when: today.
Armed with a vague understanding of the light, Cassie begins to explore her “gift,” seeking those marked for death and probing the line between decision and destiny. Though she’s careful to hide her secret—even from her new philosophy-obsessed boyfriend—with each impending death comes the temptation to test fate. But so many questions remain. How does the mark work? Why is she the only one who sees it? And finally, the most important of all: If you know today is someone’s last, should you tell them?
For a book with such issues of life and death at hand, it sure was "fluffy" - that's the only way to explain it. I felt like it barely scraped at the deeper issues that are apparent from seeing such a "mark". Instead the novel focused more on every day issues such as life, love, and fear.
Cassie is a somewhat normal girl, until she realizes that she can see this mark on people, the day that they die. Throughout the book, she tries to save those that she loves, failing once and then trying again to find that she can make a difference. Unfortunately, this turn of events leads her to tell her new boyfriend Lucas everything. Only, once he believes her, Lucas becomes obsessed with the idea of having her save these people or at least let them know they are going to die that day.
Cassie resists the idea and starts to avoid Lucas - I would too - when he becomes more obsessed with her sightings of the 'mark' then actually being with her. Lucas even goes as far as to bring up the debate during their psychology class - a huge sign that what they had before has fizzled out.
Unfortunately, the big reveal about Cassie's background is left toward the end - why she sees what she does and the truth behind her parent's death. Something that saved this novel from being completely about her life and added a bit of a twist. Not sure if Jen is continuing this as a series, but I would love to know more about the background behind the 'mark'.
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