Glimmer by Phoebe Kitanidis Review

Monday, April 9, 2012

Title: Glimmer
Author: Phoebe Kitanidis
Publisher: Balzer & Bray
Publish Date: April 17, 2012
Genre: YA, Paranormal
Pages: 352
Source: Publisher
When Marshall and Elyse wake up in each other’s arms with zero memory of how they got there or who they are, it’s the start of a long journey through their separate pasts and shared future.

Terrified by their amnesia, the two make a pact to work together to find the answers that could jog their missing memories. As they piece together clues, they discover they’re in the idyllic mountain resort town of Summer Falls, where everyone seems mysteriously happy, but as Marshall and Elyse quickly learn, darkness lurks beneath the town’s perfect facade. Not only is the town haunted by sinister ghosts, but none of its living inhabitants retain bad memories of anything—not the death of Marshall’s mom, not the hidden shame in Elyse’s family, not even the day-to-day anguish of high school.

Lonely in this world of happy zombies, Marsh and Elyse fall into an intense relationship...but the secrets they uncover could be the death of this growing love—and the death of everyone, and everything, they love in Summer Falls.
Marshall and Elyse can’t be sure what exactly happened that night. Their confusion is only compounded upon by the fact that that they wake in the same bed with no memory of who they are, where they are from, or what got them to where they are today. Their dread should be pacified by the fact that the town in which they find themselves, Summer Falls, seems pristine and perfect, but there’s something that just doesn’t quite fit. Everyone is happy. Summer never ends, and the heat is anything but soothing. Rather, it’s just sleepy, and the townfolk seem to be quite prone to “heatnaps.” Summer Falls could be perfect, but Elyse and Marshall can see the tinges of darkness in the town, and they must figure out what it is and why it’s after Summer Falls before they’re lost in a sinister town forever.

It’s been a while since I read something so deceptively cheerful, and I have to say that Glimmer by Pheobe Kitanidis was a welcome refreshment to my daily reading. With carefully crafted prose, the author spins a story that’s sweet and sinful at the same time, blending perfection with utter disarray and happiness with oblivion. The black and white natures of the story lent a haunting nature to the speedy plot, binding tension to every twist and turn along the way; and trust me, there were plot twists aplenty! With two loveable characters with whom you can empathize and relate, Glimmer will reel you into its web and refuse to let go.

Guys, there was something so eerie and Stepford about Glimmer that totally had me in its claws from start to finish. From page one; we’re prompted with questions – questions to which we are not immediately given answers. In fact, we’re given non-answers throughout the story, and we’re asked to hang on tight as the story, the setting and the plot spin darker and darker with each turn of the page. The beauty of the novel is the unpredictability of it. It’s a maze, in all truth, and just when I thought I was going to figure out what was truly happening in Summer Falls, something shook things up, yet again. The mysteries kept adding and layering upon one another and, while at times a bit tedious, I enjoyed that nothing was ever exactly how I thought it would be. Adding to each twist and turn was the dual narration of the novel. However, Glimmer tried a different approach – one that was rather effective, in my humble opinion. We’re privied to the chance to see Summer Falls from both Elyse and Marshall’s points of view. Unique to Glimmer, however, is the fact that each narrative seems to end in its own little cliffhanger, allowing us to not only access the character’s mind and thoughts, but also hook us each chapter. Glimmer breathes new life into young adult paranormal with touches of love, flickers of darkness and sinister plans .

Overall, I was pretty much entirely riveted by this fairly obscure gem. I hadn’t heard too much about it, and the hype wasn’t overdone, so I was even more blown away. I hope people decide to give this one a go because I think people will be pretty surprised. I give it a 4.5 out of 5, and I highly recommend it fans of YA, especially those who enjoy paranormal.

I received this book free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This, in no way, affected my opinion or review of this book.


  1. I read this and LOVED IT.

    The fact that it is a stand alone paranormal was enough to get me all giddy about it - and then the amnesia elements, the darker aspects, and the mystery behind it all...SO GOOD.

    Solid review.

  2. So glad you loved this one Melissa! I loved the first half, I liked being confused and trying to figure out just what the hell was going on with this town, but some the elements at the end threw me off a bit. There were just so many different pieces all coming together at once that my little brain short-circuited:) Absolutely stunning review though, I know I'll get nothing less from you when I come here!

  3. GLIMMER has been on my to-read list for a while, even though I have not read too many reviews for it so far. So I'm very grateful for your elaborate and honest review. It sounds like a really interesting read and I feel like I should get a copy as soon as possible. Thanks for sharing!

    Fictional Distraction

  4. Glimmer was a weird one for me. I couldn't stop reading it, but I just couldn't get into the writing style or the storyline. I was curious to know what was going on, so that drove me to finish, but other than that, it wasn't really for me.

    I love your review, though - and I'm so glad you enjoyed Glimmer!

  5. Oh Melissa, what a wonderful review!!! I read a mediocre one and was honetsly not sure if I should pick it up.. but, I loved your review and I heard some amazing things about her first book "Whisper". Now I want to be surprised by Glimmer :)) 

  6. Nice! Stepford and happy zombies. Sounds right up my alley--I'll have to check it out.

  7. What a great review! Glimmer sounds very interesting. Will add this now to my wishlist! 

  8. I have not seen an actual really good review for this one. And I'm so happy to hear you really loved it! I just got it last week so plan to read it real soon. I was a bit wary before but you've got me all excited! Thanks for the awesome review Melissa!

  9. I found it pretty neat...I know some people didn't love it, but I found it rather interested and layered :)

  10. I'd seen the mediocre reviews, too, which made me a bit wary, but still...I loved it!

  11. I saw a lot of reviews that sad similar things, but I think it hooked me for some odd reason!

  12. With this one, I was riveted and hooked from the beginning and through the middle, but toward the end the book sort of lost me. It was a bit weird or rushed or something and I honestly can't even remember what happened, which is rare for me. I DID like it, though, and I thought the premise of the town and the heatnaps and such to be very original and interesting. Basically I liked it, I just didn't LOVE it. Certainly glad I read it and I love that you loved it!

  13. I heard that from a few people, actually, but I was definitely hooked! That's my favourite part of the blogosphere...differing opinions :)

  14. Winter has returned. I do not like because I can not stand the cold. But wearing loud clothes also quite interesting. I look like a cute bear


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