Beautiful Dead: Arizona

Overview

"Redemption and grief, and the love that exists even when people are gone."
-The Bookbag.

Not alive. Not dead. Somewhere in between lie the Beautiful Dead.

There's been no sign of the Beautiful Dead for weeks. Darina achingly misses Phoenix all over again. Surely he will return to help solve the remaining mysteries. It's been almost a year since Arizona drowned in Hartman ...

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Overview

"Redemption and grief, and the love that exists even when people are gone."
-The Bookbag.

Not alive. Not dead. Somewhere in between lie the Beautiful Dead.

There's been no sign of the Beautiful Dead for weeks. Darina achingly misses Phoenix all over again. Surely he will return to help solve the remaining mysteries. It's been almost a year since Arizona drowned in Hartman Lake.

Suicide, it would seem. But something doesn't add up...Drowning herself in the lake does not sound like strong, confident, Arizona: Ellerton high school's high-maintenance drama queen.

Darina must help Arizona the way she helped Jonas. But invisible wings are beating, the Beautiful Dead are in danger, and time is running out...

"Compelling characters coupled with a powerful mystery. A real page turner."
-Julia Eccleshare, Lovereading4kids

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  • Beautiful Dead Series
    Beautiful Dead Series  

Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Jennifer McConnell
The members of the Beautiful Dead are brought back for a year following their deaths in an attempt to allow them to wrap up any loose ends or mysterious circumstances surrounding their last moments. Among the Beautiful Dead is Arizona, lovely and aloof but isolated in death and desperate to understand what really happened to her. The coroner's report said that she committed suicide by drowning, but if that were the case, she would not be restlessly chained to the earth. Despite her dislike of Arizona, Darina agrees to be the link between the Beautiful Dead and the Far Side, the land of the living. Solving the riddle of Arizona's death puts Darina in more danger than anyone anticipated, and it will take all the power of the Beautiful Dead to protect her. This is the second in a four-book series, with each novel focusing on Darina's quest to help the members of the Beautiful Dead truly rest in peace. The characters are two dimensional, and the romantic elements of the story seem forced (Darina hangs around with the Beautiful Dead because her boyfriend is one of them), but the mystery is intriguing and ends with a twist. The story will appeal to readers who enjoy paranormal fiction in any guise, especially those who crave mystery and romance. Reviewer: Jennifer McConnell
VOYA - Colleen McIndoe
Ever wonder what it would be like if you could see the dead? Darina knows! In this fast-paced mystery-meets-modern-day fantasy, Darina has to solve Arizona's mystery. If she doesn't, will Arizona ever rest in peace? Teens who enjoy the Twilight saga will rave over this book. 4Q, 4P. Reviewer: Colleen McIndoe, Teen Reviewer
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—A sequel to Beautiful Dead: Jonas (Sourcebooks, 2010). In life, Daria and Arizona were not close friends, or even acquaintances. But Daria has the ability to see the souls trapped in limbo, the so-called Beautiful Dead, and now she must help Arizona research the circumstances of her sudden demise. Looking into Arizona's death, she discovers a previously hidden younger brother, a secret romance, and a motive for murder. Daria is dealing with her continuing grief over the death of her boyfriend, Phoenix, and chafing against the restrictions on their relationship: he is allowed 12 months on Earth to find out more about his death. The "Twilight" parallels begin to overwhelm the story; the teen couple is passionately in love, circumstances have forced them apart, there is an insurmountable divide between them, and the only possible reconciliation requires immense sacrifice. The behavior exhibited by Hunter, leader of the Dead, borders on abusive, and Daria's meek acceptance of his control smacks of stereotypical gender roles. The climactic flashback and gun battle lack suspense, and the saccharine ending makes the tortured romance of the protagonists that much harder to bear.—Chris Shoemaker, New York Public Library
Kirkus Reviews

Only fans of the first Beautiful Dead book (Jonas, 2009) will enjoy and fully follow this second installment as Darina moves on to help the next zombie, Arizona, explain the mystery surrounding her drowning death before her one-year anniversary or Arizona will be sent back to limbo (an agreement arranged with Hunter, the zombie overlord, so Darina can continue seeing her deceased boyfriend). While the rest of the small town wrote off Arizona's death as suicide, Darina spends her time tracking down clues from Arizona's autistic younger brother, other-side-of-the-tracks mechanic boyfriend and archetypal wicked stepmother. The teen's search is as much about cracking Arizona's hard exterior and family secrets as it is about finding her murderer. With just hours to spare before Arizona's final fate, a deus ex machina arrives as Hunter sends Darina, Arizona and her potential killers back in time to witness Arizona's demise, an act that could have been done all along. Just as in the series opener, the story is dragged down by obsessive love, flat characters and tedious writing. (Supernatural mystery. YA)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781402239458
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 10/5/2010
  • Series: The Beautiful Dead Series
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 704,560
  • Age range: 13 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Eden Maguire lives part of the time in the US, where she enjoys the big skies and ice-capped mountains of Colorado. Aside from her interest in the supernatural and writing fiction, Eden's life is lived as much as possible in the outdoors. She says, "Put me on a horse and point me towards a mountain-that's where I find my own personal paradise."

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Read an Excerpt

From Chapter One:

Phoenix Rohr changed me. He exploded into my life like a bright shooting star out of a big, dark sky and lit up my world. Before I met Phoenix I was a half person-unfinished and scared. Afterward, for a few short weeks, I was whole.

He held me together against the rough world, my hand in his, his arm around my shoulder.

The truth is, people in my world have a habit of losing their lives-four kids from our school in one year. It makes for intensity-every day you grasp what you've got and live it. Love, and sex, and sharing each moment. I held on to Phoenix like he was my savior.

And then it shattered. I lost him-three small words. He was in a fight and he died.

I looked for him everywhere. I drove my car out of town through the shaking aspens and tall redwoods to where the jagged hills joined the sky. "Phoenix." I whispered it a thousand times. His name was all I had.

Phoenix-the fourth on a roll call of students who would never return. One-two-three-four hits to the heart and the last one was the worst by a million miles. "Phoenix." I clung to memories. His kisses, his touch-midsummer days when we swam in Deer Creek, evenings when he would turn up the sound system in my car and drive us out to Hartmann Lake, with me resting my head on his shoulder and trying to count the stars. For a time I was scared that I'd forget.

Then the wings of angels, ghosts, spirits in limbo- whatever you want to call them-began to beat. And Phoenix came back.
_ _ _ _

I don't want to talk with anyone. I need to be alone. OK, so everything worked out for Jonas-and that was partly down to me. But I still hold the fate of three Beautiful Dead in my hands. It's true-I do. Arizona, Summer, and Phoenix. Arizona, Summer, Phoenix. In that order-the names run in my head like a mantra.

"Darina, I wish you would stay home more. We could do stuff-have a pedicure, go shopping." This is Laura, my mom.

"Darina, you have to quit driving the convertible. It eats gas." My stepdad Jim.

You get the picture.

"Meet us at the mall. Lucas and Christian will be there."

Jordan and Hannah. Chirpy-chirpy-cheep-cheep chickadees. And Logan Lavelle. "Darina, why don't you hang at my place like we used to? I have a cool new DVD we can watch."
_ _ _ _

Back off, all of you. Leave me alone. My body language ought to have done it, but these guys are too thick-skulled to read it. Or maybe they care about me.

I drive the car anyway, way out through Centennial, always in the same direction toward Foxton. Into the mountains, rising sheer on each side of the freeway, blocking out the blue sky.

I blast music into the quiet air. I put my foot on the gas. Speed is the key to lifting the weight from my shoulders, leaving everyone behind. Drive, baby, drive! I'm in among the burnout area. Miles of forest fire have left black, twisted stumps, fallen trunks, gray earth. In ten years maybe green stuff will start to grow.

I'm out of the tree carnage, pushing higher into the mountains and the redwoods are green again against the pink rock, and I'm shedding my heavy secret. It's sliding from my shoulders because out here nobody can pressure me. I'm safe. The beat of the music pounds my eardrums. Guitars whine. I yell the lyrics as I grip the steering wheel and lean forward in my seat. Lip gloss—red bodywork and creamy beige leather with silver trim. Brandon Rohr showed expensive taste when he found me this car.

I pass Turkey Shoot Ridge, ten minutes from Foxton. Thirty minutes from the Beautiful Dead.
_ _ _ _

I guess I'm fixated. I know I am. Every moment, every breath I take, I long for Phoenix, his eyes reading what's in my head and heart, his arms around me. Why can't I be with him twenty-four/seven? I want to know.

Here's Foxton-a straggle of wooden houses, a general store with boarded windows, an intersection without a traffic sign. I take the side road, past the fishermen's cabins overlooking the racing water where Bob Jonson finally took revenge for Jonas's death-he forced Matt Fortune off the road and they both smashed against the rocks and drowned. They took Matt's Harley back to Charlie Fortune and he fixed it up for himself to ride. I shudder when I think about that.

Don't think about it, Darina. Drive on. I'm clear of the houses and the road has turned to dirt. There's nothing beyond this point, so I need to get out of the car and go by foot along the path the mule deer made when they headed for the stand of aspens on the ridge. This is the fifth (maybe sixth) time I've driven up here since Jonas left, and I always meet silence and emptiness. The wind blows through the aspens but there are no wings beating, no force field telling far-siders like me to back off.

Phoenix, it's me. Where are you? I need to see you. When he holds me in his arms my heart steadies. It's the only time I feel I'm home.

If I carry your secret much longer, I'll fall apart. Tell Hunter, tell the others, I can't do this alone.

I climb to the ridge, and I'm out of breath as I stand in the shade of the rusting water tower. You can look through the trees down into the next valley and never see the old barn. The aspen leaves shake and rustle-like wings? It's beautiful, really beautiful-the aspens and the sloping hillside, yellow spikes of Indian tobacco plant standing out among the silvery meadow grass. And the big, big sky.

But, no, I'm still not hearing the sound of beating wings-only the thump of my own heartbeat and the rasp of my breath, and I get no sense of Phoenix and the Beautiful Dead. I look for him as I stride down the slope, look so hard that maybe I miss the obvious and fail to spot his tall, still figure by the barn door, turned to me and waiting. He will be there, if wishing and longing can make it happen.

My legs swish through the grass. I crouch and crawl under the razor-wire fence. And I can see straight into the barn because the door is swinging open like always. "Phoenix?" I say out loud as I step into the darkness. There's the dust smell in my nostrils and the stall partitions rotting and leaning at crazy angles. Ancient horse tack is hanging from hooks. Cobwebs trail from rafter to rafter.

"Please!"

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Sort by: Showing all of 12 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 21, 2011

    AWSOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    This whole series is a great read. It grabes ur attention pulles you in wanting to read more and more! i avise to read them in oreder BIG TIME!!!!
    This auther is great and I defently recommend this series!
    I recommend:
    Jonas: Beautiful Dead
    Arizona: Beautiful Dead
    Summer: Beautiful Dead
    and hopefully soon Pheonix: Beautiful Dead

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 2, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    review taken from One Book At A Time

    After thinking the first in the series was only so-so, I didn't set my expectations to high for this second installment. I'm happy to report that enjoyed it way more than the first. Even better, the word Zombie wasn't even mentioned once in this one.

    I do have to point out that this series seems to have some glaring faults. The first being, I'm sure in a sane world, an autopsy would have been performed on Arizona. And the placement of her wings tattoo doesn't make a lot of sense when the description of what actually happened is revealed. In my eyes, she technically did drown. Also, I don't understand what the beautiful dead for 18 months. Darina gets about a week to help them, but even she doesn't do much. Hunter is the one who actually solves the mystery. Why can't he do that all along?

    Despite all that, I really like the story this time. I think it's because I liked Arizona more. Her life leading up to her death was way more complex that I thought possible. She's hiding so much from everybody, and it's interesting to watch all the facts unfold. And what really happened was crazy. Not to mention the events that occur right after we learn the truth. I don't think justice was truly served.

    I also liked Phoenix and Darina's relationship in this one. It seemed more real and not nearly as rushed. I also think Darina is starting to build more character, although I really wish there would be more of a connection with her mom. Plus, the other character are starting to have more life.

    I'll be reading the next one. I was to see how this all plays out in the end.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 24, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Zombie-tastic

    The story picks up where Jonas ended. This time Darina has to help Arizona solve the mystery behind her death before the 12 months she has been granted ends.
    The format remains the same as Book 1 with the story told from Darinas perspective. I found the imagery and tension far more vivid than in the first book.
    The characters are being developed alongside each other all adding to the plot. Obviously from the title of the book, the main development is that of Arizona. The main thing I can say without giving away any plot details is that the adage 'never judge a book by its cover' kept popping into my head. People only see what we allow them to see, nobody can really know another person unless they experience the things the other person has to deal with. Darina is really gaining depth as a character the more she helps the others. Little plot teasers are given throughout the story adding to the tension and keeping me turning the pages.
    The tension is really building and I feel a crescendo coming. I can't wait for the next installment Summer.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 7, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Andrea for Teens Read Too

    Darina has been missing Phoenix for several weeks. But she knows that he and the Beautiful Dead will be showing up soon, because Arizona's death is reaching the deadline for the truth to be found out. And sure enough, the Beautiful Dead do come back. Darina knows that she has to help Arizona, but she's not a fan. Arizona has always been cold and a drama queen. But Darina soon comes to find out why Arizona acts the way she does. Plus, Darina has to find out just what happened at Hartmann Lake. Everyone says it was suicide, but Darina doesn't buy it - Arizona wasn't the type to kill herself. So Darina slowly starts to find out Arizona's secrets. But does she find out what happened to the girl before time runs out?? Before I started reading this book, I remember thinking that my opinion of the first book in the BEAUTIFUL DEAD series was mixed. I remember thinking it was just an okay book and I wasn't sure that I would like this one. But I did! I definitely enjoyed it more than JONAS. I feel that we got a much better read on the three main characters in this story. I liked Darina more, although I still don't like how she treats her mother. I still really liked Phoenix. And we really get to know Arizona and why she was the way she was. I definitely didn't see the end coming. I had a couple of different ideas about what happened to Arizona, but none of them were right. I love when that happens! The next book in the series is called SUMMER, and I look forward to reading it!

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  • Posted October 11, 2010

    It'll Break Your Heart but It's Worth It

    When you read a fantastic start to a series, you can't help but anticipate the next installment. Thus is the case with The Beautiful Dead. When I read Beautiful Dead: Jonas I was captivated. I told everyone I knew about the book and couldn't stop gushing about it. So when I finally received Beautiful Dead: Arizona, my one hope was that I at least came close in my enjoyment of the first. Not only did it do that, but the second book, to my delight, was even better.

    In this, our heroine and the voice of the story, Darina must uncover the mystery behind Arizona's death. It's been nearly a year, and time is running out. As revenants, zombies, and those given one chance to get out of limbo, Arizona must find out what happened to her or face an eternity in flux. Darina helps, although she's never cared for Arizona, because of her abiding love for Phoenix; her boyfriend and a member of the Beautiful Dead following his death months before. In order to maintain contact with her beloved, she must assist those who died from her high school. Meaning that after Arizona's mystery is solved it is then Summer's turn, and then Phoenix's.

    As with Jonas, I couldn't put this book down. I love the voice of the author and her style of writing. In Arizona, she kicks things up a notch. The mystery of what occurred with Arizona is compacted by a multitude of different things, and Arizona isn't talking, which means Darina's job is even harder than before. As Darina enters into dangerous situations, her importance to the Beautiful Dead truly comes into focus. This, I felt, was important as it revealed just how much they need her. Even the head honcho, Hunter, finally accepts what she means to the salvation of those who have turned to her for assistance.

    I would be remiss if I didn't mention the one thing that pulls me back to the series and will continue to do so until the end -- the complex and heartbreaking relationship between Phoenix and Darina. Theirs is a love affair that is doomed to end tragically. You know it, are fully cognizant of it, but in some macabre way have to know how it ends. With only two books left, I know the answer is coming soon. I just hope that author, Eden Maguire finds some way to mend my heart after she's broken it.

    A definite must read and another Best Book, I loved The Beautiful Dead: Arizona. I recommend this story to a 14+ audience as well as for adults. If you've not experienced this phenomenal series, do yourself a favor and purchase a copy. I eagerly await the next, Beautiful Dead: Summer.

    Originally posted at: Aurora Reviews

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  • Posted October 5, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Far better than its predecessor

    I actually did not like the first book in this series, but I decided to follow through and read the sequel anyway. I was pleasantly surprised to find that this book is actually much better. The characters show some depth, and the mystery follows twists and turns to an unexpected (to me) end. This fast-paced story touches on more issues than just coping with death and sleuthing for justice. Parts of the plot even hint at a bigger picture that will hopefully be addressed in later books involving Hunter's past. I enjoyed this book immensely and will happily buy the next book in the series to see what happens to the Beautiful Dead.

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  • Posted October 4, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Fantastic Sequel!

    After solving the mystery surrounding Jonas' death, Darina is back with the Beautiful Dead. This time it's Arizona's turn. Almost a year ago, her death was ruled a suicide by drowning in Hartmann Lake. But a few newly discovered details make it look more like a murder. Hunter, the leader of the Beautiful Dead, knows he needs Darina to help them out more than ever. And Arizona needs her to pass along important messages to her family. However, as Darina gets closer to learning the truth, she finds her life becoming endangered by those who want it to be kept a secret.

    Oh man, I devoured this book. It is a sure sign of a good series when you can pick up the next book and jump right into the story. If the author needs to spend time reminding the reader of what occurred in the previous book it is not nearly as well-written. Eden Maguire seemlessly ties this book in to come after Jonas' story. The best part of this story was Arizona, by far. You get such a small hint of her in the first book, but this one peels her like an onion. So many layers going very deep. Darina was also a much stronger character this time around. Maguire set up the world and the paranormal elements so well in the first book, there was really no need for her to spend time describing them again, and therefor I could enjoy spending more time with the characters. Next up is Summer's story, and I am looking forward to learning about her!

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    Posted September 28, 2011

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    Posted April 29, 2011

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    Posted March 4, 2011

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    Posted July 9, 2010

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    Posted October 29, 2010

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