…this YA debut’s real strength rests in Lily’s self-confidence, respect for her deceased clients and their loved ones, and familial drive. Adam’s underlying nature provides plenty of storytelling fuel to bring this eerie, Jewish mythology–inspired tale to a satisfying conclusion.” Publishers Weekly
“This tells many familiar stories—those of a teen understanding her place within a family legacy, of friendships stretching beyond their childhood origins—but what will keep readers hooked is its protagonist’s kindness, empathy, and willingness to grow.” Booklist
“Intriguingly different” Kirkus
“With a main character, who does the make-up for the dead, this is a tale which dances in the shadows with grace and mysterious allure.” Bookworm for Kids
Lily McCrae loves her job doing makeup for the dead for her family’s failing funeral home business. Lately, though, Lily’s best friend Mallory is too busy reinventing herself to hang out, her stepbrother Evan is preoccupied with college applications, and her father is pushing her into taking over the family business, so she feels lonelier than ever. She finds herself spending all her time in the prep room talking to her “clients.” After all, the dead are the only ones who really listen.
Then the neighboring house is leveled in an explosion, dredging up memories of Adam, the boy who lived there and saved her life. When she, Mallory, and Evan go exploring and find a mysterious hatch in the rubble, they discover that someone’s been trapped inside. Someone who says his name is Adam. Trouble is, Adam has been missing for four years. Lily is forced to reconcile her feelings for him as together they delve into his mysterious past while she also struggles to figure out what she wants out of life and tries to fix her rocky relationships with Mallory and her parents. Will Lily ever decide who she wants to be? And is love enough to overcome truth?