Wicked Dead – Torn
Stefan Petrucha & Thomas Pendleton
Harper Teen Publishing
Paperback $7.99 198pp
Review by David Simms
In this second installment of the Wicked series, Petrucha & Pendleton (A.K.A. Lee Thomas) deliver another exciting story which begins with the quartet of dead schoolgirls rolling bones to decide who tells their story next. I assume that in each installment, a different student will take a turn, and possibly include others, which adds to the intrigue before the real story even begins.
The real story? Rocker Devin has a problem. His band, Torn, is poised to play the bigger gigs if they can fill out their setlist and then, dump their lame bassist. After Devin spills a beautifully haunting ballad from his soul, one of the band is murdered, possibly by a gang – or something less corporeal. The video of the new hit circulates and gains steam while more turmoil hits the band.
The writing is crisp and actually sounds like teenagers, instead of so many authors (in all genres) who attempt to nail the elusive vibe of that beast who lives between 13 and 18 years of age. Many try, but few can make it sound authentic. Add a story that rings true along with characters who deviate from the tried and true (especially the ghost girls), and the result is the Wicked Dead series. Highly recommended for teens – or anyone who loves a good fast read.