She Smells the Dead

She Smells the Dead

by E. J. Stevens

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Overview

The first book in the popular YA paranormal Spirit Guide series by E.J. Stevens.

It's the beginning of senior year and Yuki's psychic awareness of ghostly spirits is threatening to ruin her life. Her ability to sense spirits of the dead isn't glamorous like on TV.

SHE SMELLS THE DEAD.

Yuki is being visited in her dreams and suspects that her friend Calvin is involved in something strange. Will Yuki be able to save the spirits...and herself?

Product Details

BN ID: 2940012634214
Publisher: Sacred Oaks Press
Publication date: 09/09/2010
Series: Spirit Guide , #1
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 663,844
File size: 371 KB

About the Author

E.J. Stevens is the author of the haunting collection of dark poetry FROM THE SHADOWS, the chilling collection of paranormal poetry SHADOWS OF MYTH AND LEGEND, and the young adult paranormal SPIRIT GUIDE series, including SHE SMELLS THE DEAD, SPIRIT STORM, and LEGEND OF WITCHROT ROAD.

E.J. is a graduate of the University of Maine at Farmington with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. She has worked a variety of jobs that demonstrate the human condition including schools, psychiatric hospitals and *shudder* shopping malls. E.J. currently resides in a magical forest on the coast of Maine where she finds daily inspiration for her writing.

Visit E.J. at http://www.FromTheShadows.info

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She Smells the Dead 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
missy1029 More than 1 year ago
She Smells the Dead was a fast and fun read. I really enjoyed the fact that there was a mixture of paranormal elements that were tied together. Also, I completely love the cover. It is absolutely beautiful and is pretty much exactly how I visualize the main character, Yuki. Vanessa "Yuki" just so happens to smell the dead. It's their way of letting her know that they have unfinished business that she needs to help them with. When she starts out all she has is the smell to go on in order to find out who they are and what they need. I love how original Yuki was. She wasn't your average cookie cutter character. She was a goth girl and she was darn proud of it. She was hilarious, sarcastic and kick butt. She was all the things that I love in characters. While working a case Yuki enlists the help of her friends. Calvin, her hunky best friend that she is starting to have feelings for, who also has a secret of his own and Emma her crazy vegan best friend who is the queen of research and lover of all animals big and small. They make up an extremely fun cast of characters. I love how Stevens weaved all of the characters in together so that they play such an important role in each others lives and the story. The plot was so fun, fast paced and it seemed like there was adventure around every corner! Overall I really really like this one! This story was absolutely unique and fun and WAY too short! We are left with quite a cliffhanger and I am excited to start on the next in the series, Spirit Storm.
Tamela More than 1 year ago
A few weeks ago, I finished reading the second installment of E.J. Stevens thrilling YA mystery/romance entitled Spirit Storm. This past week, I picked up the beginning of the Spirit Guide series. Again, I was struck by the fascinating manner in which Ms. Stevens writes, and I thoroughly enjoyed the book! Our heroine, Yuki, is introduced in She Smells the Dead. For anyone that remembers, being a teenager is filled with angst, drama, and a weirdness that defies logic. Adults will never understand a teenager, don't ask me why. We've all been there, but the world of those budding adults is confusing. Perhaps, more so, it's a memory we wish to suppress. Yuki's teenage world is far more dramatic than most adults or teens would ever imagine. Unlike most people who have the 'vision' (where they see the spirits of the undead), Yuki smells the undead as they flit about the shadowed realms of the world. Employing the assistance of her friends, who have secrets of their own to hide, she's on a mission to solve the spirits untimely human demise. Ms. Stevens writes a thrilling novel filled with the paranormal, adventure, mystery, and the unknown. The Spirit Guide series is a spell binding YA read, brimming over and reminding me of all those fantastic adventure and fantasy books I read as a teen. Readers will sit, enraptured by the author's skill in creating characters that explode from the pages. I loved She Smells the Dead and highly recommend it and Spirit Storm to anyone that has a weakness for well-written YA novels.
bonnie_lamer_blogspot_com More than 1 year ago
Yuki is just beginning her senior year and as if high school wasn't difficult enough, she has to deal with smelling the dead while paying attention in class. E. J. Stevens has brought a new and fun element to YA paranormal fiction. Yuki doesn't smell corpses; she smells something that is associated with the human life of the spirit trying to make contact. She then needs to use her yet limited, but developing, detective skills to try to figure out who the spirit was and why it's contacting her with only her sense of smell as a guide. I truly enjoyed this book. I am a fan of dream imagery and E. J. Stevens weaves this into the story nicely. The characters are charming, quirky and interesting and they each seem to blossom as the book progresses. Yuki may be somewhat awkward in the beginning but she takes on the challenge of dealing with her ability with strength and courage. While dealing with all of this, she also discovers that her feelings for her good friend, Calvin, are stronger than friendship. But she knows that Calvin is keeping something from her, something important and she's determined to discover what it is even if it could mean the end of their burgeoning relationship. Yuki's vegan friend Emma seems to take it all in stride as she battles her own demons such as cruelty of animals by meat eaters and the oppression of bees by beekeepers. The more I read, the harder it was to put the book down. The one thing I thought the book was missing was back story. There is no clear explanation of how Yuki discovers that the overwhelming smells that bombard her are those of dead spirits. Were there others in her family history that may have had the ability or is this something that happens only to random individuals? Did she have dreams that helped her believe that she indeed smelled the dead? Yuki's friends are supportive throughout the book and believe in her ability but did they believe her at first? It would be interesting to know how she told them and convinced them that this power of hers was real. I would love to read maybe a novelette prequel to She Smells the Dead that answers these questions. She Smells the Dead is a fun read that makes you eager to discover where the spirits are going to take Yuki and Calvin next. I will definitely be reading the second book in this series!
Dana_W More than 1 year ago
Yuki can smell the dead. She can feel them too. So when her smellovision powers become more alive than ever, she and her hunky werewolf boyfriend have to figure out how to help them cross over before they all try to rush Yuki at once. Join Yuki on her adventures in the spirit world.
ChriBree More than 1 year ago
Well, I'm happy to say that I've found a new paranormal romance series to obsess over. Yuki's an ordinary teenage girl. She's got an unrequited crush, her best friend is Emma, she dresses in all black, she's got conflicting feelings for Calvin Miller... and she smells the dead. Maybe not so ordinary after all. Something odd is definitely going on when Calvin mysteriously disappears, and Yuki begins having creepy dreams. Who - or what, is Calvin? Will Yuki be able to free the lost soul who's following her? Will she be able to save herself? A touch of the paranormal, romance, mystery, action... this book has it all. The characters were all different, unique, and amazingly written. Yuki, cast aside her ability to smell the dead, is your normal high school girl. She falls in love the the wrong people, is worried about her appearance, and things most things are her fault. Emma's the devoted vegan, as well as a research addict and a super helpful best friend. Calvin's the down to earth kind of guy with a furry secret and a soft spot for Yuki. Oh yeah, and then there's Simon, the arrogant guy who thinks way too highly of his looks and charms, who finds a habit of bickering with Emma, but somehow still finds his way into my list of favorite characters. But don't tell him that ;) It was pretty obvious what Calvin's 'furry secret' was, and the foreshadowing was a little overdone. You could guess what it was, especially from Yuki's dreams, and that part brought down the rating slightly. This isn't your normal paranormal novel. I mean, how many books have you read about a girl who smells the dead? Sure there are books about people with abilities to see the dead, or even hear the dead, but only this series has a girl that can smell the dead. It definitely wasn't a rip off of some other book, and I really don't have any words to describe how I liked it. I'd rate it a 4 out of 5 stars. E. J. Stevens, please keep writing!
TheMochaLatte More than 1 year ago
Vanessa Stennings, aka Yuki, has always smelt the dead, she calls them smell impressions, that sometimes smell like rotten eggs and skunk. So when Yuki begins to smell the pungent scent of vinegar she knows someone's trying to communicate with her. Eighty-one year old Jackson Green, the CEO of the Green Orchards Apple Cider Vinegar Company, is dead and Yuki knows he's the one asking for her help. Her only clues lead her to believing he was murdered for his fortune. With the help of her friend Calvin , they travel to Green Orchards and look for any clues about helping Mr.Green and discovering who his murderer was. Amongst the investigation, Yuki begins to have strange dreams. Dreams about scarabs, wolves and butterflies. What could they all mean and could it have anything to do with Calvin's mysterious disappearance? She Smells the Dead was quite a refreshing read. Yuki is , without a doubt, a very unique character. She can't see the dead or talk to them-she can smell them. Her name is also refreshing, just like clean beautiful snow, just as she mentioned in the novel, though Yuki is just her nick name. She's brutally honest about her feelings and has a fear of crossing over bridges, extremely relatable to a reader with the same train of thought and fears. Calvin is Yuki's smoking hot friend. He also happens to play a large part in the development of the story. Emma is a straight talker with a passion against bee oppression, which i found both funny and fresh in a character. All i can say is "down with bee oppression!". Gordy, i would say, is the character i found myself relating to the most. Just like Gordy I'm an anime fanatic, was part of the anime club during high school and i absolutely love torturing people by making them watch "Loveless"(a boys love anime). The development of the story moved into a completely different direction than i initially assumed. It was quite exciting. She Smells the dead was very quick paced and the plot was developed without stall, making E.J. Stevens a straight-to-the-point kind of author. Very admirable. No page fillers means no useless information being relayed to the readers, which I'm glad was completely devoid from this novel. However, it saddens me that the mystery involving Jackson Green was short lived and ended quite quickly. I was hoping for a bit more longevity. I enjoyed Calvin's major role in the development of the story, it was definitely something that i wasn't anticipating. The ending had me biting my nails, needing more. I'm glad that E.J. provided a copy of the second installment, Spirit Storm. I'm looking forward to hopping into that one as soon as possible.
A_Readers_Record More than 1 year ago
She Smells the Dead provides something new and fresh to the YA realm. Who knew that smelling the dead and having your best friend compare you to a nasty little beetle could spell out your fate? Vanessa Stennings, otherwise known at Yuki, isn't your typical teenager girl with a free spirited gothic style. With a crush, two best friends, one of which has secrets of his own, and a stinky following, Yuki's life is a full on enchanted mystery with what seems to be a silver rope typing the best friends together in a way they were not aware existed. I do wish this first installment of the Spirit Guide series would have spanned through the big day of Samhain, otherwise known as Halloween. The build up was threaded throughout the whole book but that will be what brings me back. The need to know what happens to these three best friends and the circle of people (and beings) around them, is what will help drive this series forward. Simple yet thorough writing, a beautiful portrait for a cover, a mysteries that needs solving, the start of a possibly Yuki-epic love story, a rope tying two worlds together, and an added factor of I-Don't-Want-To-Put-This-Book-Down, She Smells the Dead, is a great quick read that left me wanting more.
stampymom More than 1 year ago
What I loved: The characters: Yuki took me the longest to fall in love with, but I was instantly in love with Cal and Emma, her best friends. I think Cal just might be what every young girl should wish for in a guy, well...except for that one little thing. You'll see. (you know I don't do spoilers) Emma is amazing! I love a girl that believes in things that go against the mainstream and trust me Emma walks the walk. Poor Yuki is so overwhelmed at times that she borders on whining occasionally. I have faith that she is going to step it up and be a wonderful heroine. She was very believable as a character with this flaw and that had me loving her as well. I loved that there is NO love triangle. Now don't get me wrong, I love a good triangle as much as the next girl. However, it's been a bit over done lately and it was refreshing to have a romance that is strong for a change. I loved the story. It definitely has the feel of a first book in a series, lots of set up and getting to know the world that is being created and the rules of that world. It totally worked though. What I didn't love: The ending!!! UGH how could you do that to us E.J. Stevens? I can't wait to read the next book! ( I guess that's a good thing too.) Reading this book was fun and at the end frustrating (what a cliff hanger). I would definitely recommend reading She Smells the Dead. I keep telling people that if you liked Kelly Armstrong's The Darkest Powers Series then I think you would like She Smells the Dead. I'm not exactly sure why I think this. For some reason I just thought it had that kind of feel to it. Trust me, coming from me that is a VERY good thing. So grab a copy of She Smells the Dead get comfortable and enjoy. You might not be able to get up till you've finished.
Soul_Wr More than 1 year ago
If you thought your high school days were rough. Yuki's in her senior year and besides dealing with all the inherent pressures of that crazy time of life, she has some unusual and difficult stresses all her own. She doesn't get to see dead people, she has to smell them; her best friend, whom she's beginning to suspect she cares for more deeply than she imagined, has an odd secret that may be related to her psychic power; and her dreams seem to portend an imminent danger. Author E. J. Stevens' delightfully original She Smells the Dead impressed me from its first pages and I now include it among my favorite novels. Yuki is one of the most likeable heroines a reader has the joy to be introduced to, and I loved hearing her every thought as much as following her story adventure. The author's great character development shines through with the entire cast. Calvin, simultaneously cool and down-to-earth and Emma, passionate vegan and animal advocate, are the best friends we all wish we had. This paranormal romance of blossoming love and great friendships, with laugh-out-loud moments, shares the wonderful "high school can be hell" metaphor and witty dialogue of the TV series, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," but in a unique story all its own and with the distinctive voice of its talented author. I eagerly await the next book in the Spirit Guide series! Highly recommended.
grammy1GL More than 1 year ago
I have just come upon an enchanting new Paranormal Mystery Story written by Dark Poetess, E.J. Stevens. She Smells the Dead is just what the Moms and Librarians have been looking for. A New Series of books with enchantment, mystery, love and commitment for a YA audience. Yuki is our heroine, a high school girl who is affected by the dead. She is "not part of the crowd" At her age, she walks to her own tune, has been called "witch" by her classmates , which is only exasperated by her looks and dress. To her credit she is very grounded and has a great sense of humor about herself...She has a great friend in Emma, who compliments her in every way. Calvin and Yuki have been friends forever. They share secrets of who they are. Calvin has been told by his family that he is an Alpha wolf, part of his heritage. At a camp they both attended one summer, Calvin finds his WOLF form. Yuki was told she was a DUNG BEETLE which she found unsettling and not humorous. Together in this story, they sift their way through a Ghostly Haunting of Yuki, a need to find out more about their powers and now the young love that is blossoming between them. Book one of the series is W.O.N.D.E.R.F.U.L. I cannot wait for the sequel....Although this book gives us a great story, it ends with the promise of another...Great job Ms Stevens... Review by Gloria Lakritz
kittycrochettwo More than 1 year ago
It's the first day of school and Vanessa Stennings who likes to be called Yuki is overwhelmed by the scent of vinegar, weird right? Well Yuki has a gift, she smells the dead, not like decay or anything like that but instead its more a symbolic scent of the spirit who has come to her for help, her friend Calvin likes to call it smell impressions, anywho this particular spirit smells like vinegar, and the only way to get rid of the spirit is to figure out what it wants! Yuki hasn't ever been popular in school, some of her classmates even call her a witch,because of the way she looks and dresses, but she does have a few good friends. Calvin Miller whom she has known since second grade,Emma, who writes for the school paper and Gordy who is in the Anime club, and thinks Yuki is cool because of her name. Calvin and Yuki share a special bond of knowing who they really are, Calvin was told by his family that he is actually a werewolf , and one summer while he and Yuki was at a Shaman retreat he was told his spirit animal was the wolf, and Yuki's turned out to be the dung beetle, which Calvin loves teasing her about. So with her paranomal powers and his werewolf thing well you could say they have a few things in common! Together they need to figure out their powers while also trying to get to the bottom of Yuki's ghost, all before Samhain (Halloween), the night that ghosts flood the earth, but with romance blooming between the two all Yuki wants to do is attend The Homecoming Dance and wear her corset dress! This is a very quick paced story with a great cast of characters. Yuki's quick wit and her often sarcastic sense of humor was something I loved, the romance that also started developing between Gordy and Emma toward the end of the book was an unexpected twist, and I look forward to how that might develop in a future book. The author wraps up the book very well, but the last sentence of the book leaves us hope that there will be sequel to this one! If your a fan of paranormal fiction, young adult, or mysteries then I highly recommend this book.
hrose2931 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
E. J. Steven's novel is a combination of paranormal romance and mystery with a good bit of humor thrown in. The main character Yuki isn't really named that, but chose that nickname over her real name Vanessa. You'll have to read the book to see what the nicknames she's been through to see why she chose a nickname. The novel takes place in high school in a small Maine town where Yuki's best friends are Calvin and Emma. Calvin is a huge meat eater, but into meditation and spiritual matters. Yuki is a vegetarian and Emma is completely Vegan. It makes for fun and interesting fodder at the lunch table.The mystery begins when Yuki is overpowered with the smell of vinegar. Both Calvin and Emma know about her strange "talent" and help her in her sleuthing to find the ghost that is connected to the smell. She can't see him or talk to him. She only has a smell to go by. Her parents don't know about her talent so she works around that. And she has to rely on her friends for rides as she doesn't have her driver's license yet, afraid a scent will overtake her and she'll pass out while driving.She has the hots for the bad boy in school Garrett Hamlin but suddenly finds herself attracted to Calvin. She soon finds out why and things get really strange from there. And that's saying a lot since she can smell dead people.This is an easy to finish in one night book. The writing flows quickly, there are no gaps in the story that need explaining except maybe how Yuki came to have her talent. But the story builds momentum leading to the next novel. There are no cliffhangers. It ends with a good conclusion but you know there is more to come. I loved the story between Cal (vin) and Yuki. They'd obviously been friends a long time and they are so opposite it is hard to believe they are friends. She's as goth as they come and he's as outdoorsy as they come, yet they are perfect for each other. He calls her his "Princess Dung Beetle" which she sometimes likes. You'll have to read to see how that came about. There are no betrayals in this book, everyone is a good down to earth loyal friend. The story is told from Yuki's perspective, first person narrative so we get a chance to see inside her head. Her observations, especially in high school are funny.I really loved this story. The romance was just enough. The paranormal was definitely something new and it wasn't just the smelling dead people. I left out a big part so I don't spoil it for you. And the strong friendships were nice to see. The biggest villain at high school this time was a "jock" and not a girl. So yay for the girls we aren't as bitchy as we're portrayed to be!! At least not in this novel.This novel is G rated. Anyone that likes paranormal romance/mystery should enjoy this quick read.
fredamans on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I love Yuki!She's strong, brave, smart and knows what she wants. The kind of girl everyone should want to be, but she makes herself a bit of an outcast.Very well rounded character for one with her ability. That vinegar smell, a dead guy. Yep, she really smells the dead. Could you imagine?!I am stuck on the edge of a cliffhanger though, as now I need to get my hands on a copy of the next book in line.Excellent storytelling from EJ, as she takes readers into a whole new dimension of fun! I think people of all ages will love it!And on a personal note, thanks to EJ for adding part of my review in the back of the book, along with others praise for Shadows of Myth and Legend.
thekaisu on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I think started a bit slow, but it got better as I go along reading, and before I knew it I was enjoying the read.Yuki can smell the dead. Literally. It was her indicator that a ghost is around when she smells something. With her recently discovered powers, Yuki was helping the world, one ghost at a time, and her latest haunting was from a ghost smelling like vinegar.Enlisting help from her friends, Emma, hardcore vegan and against anything with meat who¿s got a knack for concocting salves to nasty teas using herbs, and Calvin, the boy who was into all things mystical, the one who¿s spirit animal was a wolf. But was it really just a spirit animal, or something else entirely?I had an impression that this was a ghost story, and that¿s what you will initially think when you read the summary, so imagine my surprise when I found out there were wolves as well. I had my reservations, wondering how this element of the story will play out, but it was an interesting mix. Wolves and Ghosts. I don¿t think I¿ve read anything with both.I liked the way the plot worked out. E.J. was able to blend ghosts and wolves and turn it into something very convincing and believable with her writing. I think this was such a fresh idea, a very promising premise that, if worked out effectively would be a really good story. It¿s enchanting and very entertaining!The ending was such a cliffhanger. It makes you wonder just what will happen to Yuki. I myself am anticipating how she¿ll be able to deal with her powers and the upcoming Samhain, when she¿s most vulnerable against ghosts.Very much looking forward to the sequel!
mycutebookshelf on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I picked up this book because I thought the cover was beautiful and it sounded interesting. Bad idea. The first thing I noticed was all the errors. This is supposed to be a final book, but it was filled with grammatical errors. I was also annoyed by the characters continued use of ¿yah¿. Can¿t they just say ¿yeah¿ like normal people?!? I still decided to give it a chance, even with the annoying tidbits I noticed in the first chapters. The story is very fast paced (I actually liked that). The problem was¿nothing interesting really happened. There was no bad guy to this story, and the main character just focused on her boring romance with Cal. There are also a lot of stereotypes used in this book: Yuki is the typical goth, her best friend is vegan, etc¿ I found that a bit annoying. I like books to be different and this one just wasn¿t. I would have liked to see more action related to her power and title of the book¿smelling the dead! The summary is also misleading, as Yuki completely forgets about her crush in the beginning of the book. Overall, this book wasn¿t very believable. It was just a silly story. I was very disappointed with it.
kittycrochettwo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It's the first day of school and Vanessa Stennings who likes to be called Yuki is overwhelmed by the scent of vinegar, weird right? Well Yuki has a gift, she smells the dead, not like decay or anything like that but instead its more a symbolic scent of the spirit who has come to her for help, her friend Calvin likes to call it smell impressions, anywho this particular spirit smells like vinegar, and the only way to get rid of the spirit is to figure out what it wants! Yuki hasn't ever been popular in school, some of her classmates even call her a witch,because of the way she looks and dresses, but she does have a few good friends. Calvin Miller whom she has known since second grade,Emma, who writes for the school paper and Gordy who is in the Anime club, and thinks Yuki is cool because of her name. Calvin and Yuki share a special bond of knowing who they really are, Calvin was told by his family that he is actually a werewolf , and one summer while he and Yuki was at a Shaman retreat he was told his spirit animal was the wolf, and Yuki's turned out to be the dung beetle, which Calvin loves teasing her about. So with her paranomal powers and his werewolf thing well you could say they have a few things in common! Together they need to figure out their powers while also trying to get to the bottom of Yuki's ghost, all before Samhain (Halloween), the night that ghosts flood the earth, but with romance blooming between the two all Yuki wants to do is attend The Homecoming Dance and wear her corset dress! This is a very quick paced story with a great cast of characters. Yuki's quick wit and her often sarcastic sense of humor was something I loved, the romance that also started developing between Gordy and Emma toward the end of the book was an unexpected twist, and I look forward to how that might develop in a future book. The author wraps up the book very well, but the last sentence of the book leaves us hope that there will be sequel to this one! If your a fan of paranormal fiction, young adult, or mysteries then I highly recommend this book. I was provided a copy of this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.
lesleykj84 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Things aren't going well for Yuki. It's just the first day of school and already she is smelling the dead. It's a terrible, strong smell and no matter what she does she can't shake it. So she does the only thing she can do, tries to figure out who it is and why they are with her.With the help of her best friend's Emma and all of sudden hot Calvin, Yuki makes startling discoveries about the mystery behind the smell, and about her abilities.Can I say how creative this story is? Smelling the dead? Wow! Not only is it original but it is done well, and interesting to read about.I liked that this wasn't a makeover story, that Yuki didn't wake up and want to be something she wasn't. She accepted her fate and better yet, she kind of liked it. Sure it made her unpopular, but she seemed to be okay with that, and it was refreshing.Her relationship with Calvin though rocky at first became a really important part of the story and within time it was revealed how much they need one another. Not just as friends but as soulmates.The ending was abrupt, but I look forward to reading the next book in the series to find out what happens. The book is full of mystery and is a great paranormal read.
Cajunbooklady on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This. Was. Awesome. I've been a fan of E.J.'s poetry for a while because she writes really cool stuff but she's got a knack for Young Adult books! She Smells The Dead was new and different and certainly not a premise that I'm familiar with in the world of mediums. I thought it was unique! I adored the main character Yuki, and her drive to be herself no matter what others thought. I also adored the other "main" character, Calvin. He was a dynamic character and what I would have wanted as a boyfriend at that age. The story itself was fast paced and never boring. It's a great book in my opinion and I recommend that you check it out.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very fun book
thereaderbee More than 1 year ago
I have been eying this book for a while. The cover is gorgeous! So I jumped at the opportunity to read and review this! It was a very quick, enjoyable read. Our main character is Yuki, and she can smell the dead. Not in a nasty way, each individual spirit has a different smell. I really liked her character, she was funny and quirky. She reminded me a bit of myself at that age. I also liked the relationship between her and Calvin, once it blossomed. They were a great match. I also liked the secondary characters. Yuki¿s BFF, Emma, was a great friend. And Calvin¿s mentor, Simon, was such a flirt. All of the characters were pretty enjoyable. The story was creative, and the writing was simple. It was a fun book to read, and I enjoyed the mystery throughout the book. I was left with some questions at the end, but I¿m hoping I¿ll get answers to those when I read the next book, Spirit Storm! I can¿t wait. Overall, this is a really quick, fun read. I really enjoyed it, and am looking forward to the next book.
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JA_Beard More than 1 year ago
A Good Book Alert Review <br> She Smells The Dead Author: E.J. Stevens Genre: Young Adult Paranormal Rating: 3.5 Stars <br> Though the plot doesn't totally deliver on the interesting premise, She Smells The Dead's memorable, quirky characters still provide an enjoyable read. <br> Summary: <br> Vanessa "Yuki" Stennings may not see ghosts, but she sure can smell them. When a ghost of a recently deceased man won't leave her poor nose alone, Yuki and her colorful friends decide to investigate the circumstances of the man's death. <br> Review: <br> Though voice in important in all novels, young adult stories particularly live and die by voice. It's the difference between being drawn into the world of a teenager or saying, "Why does this teenage girl sound and think like a middle-aged scientist?" <br> She Smells The Dead, told from the first person perspective of the main character, has great voice. Not only does Yuki's narrative feel authentic, but her quirky personality adds depth to her as a character. From her explanation on why she's decided to go by a Japanese name to her pondering over the practical realities of being able to smell the dead, a very distinctive and likable character comes off the page. Granted, some readers may be slightly off-put by the frequent interjection of direct thoughts into the narrative, but I found them charming. I often found myself very amused and smiling at Yuki's quips and the wackiness of her friends. <br> Character development is strong in the story. Besides Yuki, her various friends come across as interesting people in their own right, albeit extremely eccentric (though in very funny ways). There is a touch of romance in this story, but it flows naturally and doesn't completely dominate the narrative. <br> Although the idea of a teen with spiritual powers isn't that original, the set-up itself in this book is fairly novel. I can honestly say I've never read a book before where a person communicates with ghosts via smell. Her power leads herself into a plausible, natural investigation providing some nice initial plot tension. <br> Despite the delightful characters and interesting set-up, once the plot moves from the first act, there is a rather dramatic shift in focus toward some plot elements that are a bit more commonly tread in young adult paranormal fiction. This, in of itself, isn't objectionable, but there is a certain amount of deflation of dramatic tension after the shift leading to a less engaging middle act. When the story returns its focus to the original plot, the resolution is very abrupt and, seemingly, makes some of what occurred in the first act seem slightly extraneous. The abrupt end of the book is slightly dissatisfying as well. <br> Even with the issues with plotting, the characters still made She Smells The Dead a fun read. I imagine now that the "rules" of the world have been set down, the sequels will address some of these plot issues. <br> 3.5 Stars
Hmr28 More than 1 year ago
I loved the concept of this book, loved the authors writing style (although the internal dialogue could be turned down a bit), it was well edited and had some great characters but it fizzled half way through. There simply wasn't enough action and in such a short book that's saying something. There was no real climax which made it feel like the book was a ramble. It is tempting to give this book a higher rating a 4 for example simply because there are many BAD indie books out there (poorly edited AND poorly written) (this is not one of them) but I am giving it the rating I think most accurately portrays the way I feel about the book. I think she is an author to watch and I suspect her writing will get better (plotting wise) as she goes along. I have the second book in this series up next and hopefully it will have a bit more action with a more well though out climax.