Shine by Lauren Myracle
When her best guy friend falls victim to a vicious hate crime, sixteen-year-old Cat sets out to discover who in her small town did it. Richly atmospheric, this daring mystery mines the secrets of a tightly knit Southern community and examines the strength of will it takes to go against everyone you know in the name of justice.
I have read a lot of work by Lauren Myracle and I have to admit that this is the most mature book that she's written in my opinion. Mature, and also the most serious.
The premise is defiantly daring. *SPOILERS!* Cat is determined to find her friend Patrick's, or should I say ex friend Patrick's attacker. I found almost immediately that not only did Cat genuinely want to find the killer, she also wanted to prove her friendship back after almost losing it.
The setting of a rural Southern town totally set the show. Myracle focused on the poor and lonely side of this setting and it was a backdrop that certainly fit the story. The setting allowed a very raw, vulnerable, yet very real side of the south highlight the story, and set itself apart from other books about hate crime.
Cat is defiantly a determined person. However, as I pointed out earlier, I kept getting the feeling that while she cared about Patrick an awful lot, she really want to rid herself of the guilt of abandoning him. As the mystery unfolded, she also tried to pin Patrick's attack on the person that violated her due to her unacknowledged feelings. This is one of the only weak sides we see of Cat
This is such a book about Cat and her relationships, except that she doesn't have a romantic one. She was a violated one with Tommy. She had a broken one with Christian. She had an abandoned one with Patrick. And so on and so fourth.
In the end, the mystery is solved. Cat and Patrick reunite. But someone dies.
I suggest that you read to find out who.