Ultraviolet

Ultraviolet

by R. J. Anderson

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781467709149
Publisher: Lerner Publishing Group
Publication date: 01/01/2013
Pages: 312
Sales rank: 423,869
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 7.40(h) x 1.00(d)
Lexile: 900L (what's this?)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

R. J. Anderson isn't trying to hide that she's female, she just thinks initials look more writerly. According to her mother she started reading at the age of two; all she knows is that she can't remember a single moment of her life when she wasn't obsessed with stories. She grew up reading C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien, watching Doctor Who from behind the sofa, and hanging out in her brothers' comic book shop. Now she writes novels about knife-wielding faeries, weird science, and the numinous in the modern world. Quicksilver, her latest novel, also has soldering and pancakes.

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Ultraviolet 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 55 reviews.
bookchelle More than 1 year ago
I must say, this is one of the most well written books that I have read in a really long time.All I can say is that is the most riveting first chapter that I have read in a long time if not ever. It grabs you and takes you in like no other book you've read in a while. Ultraviolet had me thinking about the story non-stop since I started to read it. Anderson wrote so well that her characters and story had me compelled to write about it right away. I usually like to wait a little while until I write the review, but not for Ultraviolet. Alison Jeffries has always felt like she didn't belong. She didn't belong in her family when she realized at a young age that she could see things that no one else could. She didn't belong in school when she understood that she had different traits than her peers. Alison Jeffries didn't belong in the mental institution when she remembered that she didn't kill Tori Beaugrand, she made her disintegrate. Alison is different from you and me. She can taste when you are lying to her. She can see colors out of our normal color spectrum. She recognizes that numbers and words can have personalities. She can see stars and hear music just from the normal day-to-day actions that you and I do. Because she is different, she is crazy. Because she says she sees things, feels things, smells thing that we cannot, she is crazy. Because she hated Tori, she killed her, and therefore, is crazy. "Everything you believe is wrong." What Alison believed and what was her reality were two different things. The evidence from the day that everyone last saw Tori led everyone to believe that Alison killed her. No body was found and no evidence has been truly able to prove anything against Alison. So what is the truth? There wasn't anything that I didn't love about this book. I don't know how to say this enough. Anderson did an amazing job writing so different, but in such an addicting way. Her writing style was superb as well as her story plot. The writing is so spot on with the way Anderson wanted to relay the story through the main character's eyes. Alison is interesting, yet, so familiar and comforting that you cannot help but relate to her feelings and emotions. Haven't you ever felt like you were different, or even going crazy? I know I have, many times. What teenager isn't feeling this in a normal situation, let alone in a mental psych ward? Throw out your reality when you read this book. Anderson will bring you where your mind will want to go, and in the next moment, she will bring you to the opposite side of it. She will break through your expectations and bring you to a place of imagination that you forgot existed. This is definitely a book to read. You will not be disappointed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love the first and the last chapter. Wonderfully written with just the right amount of despair and just the right amount of hope. Reminded me of a cross between One Flew Over a Coocoo's Nest and A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Will recommend.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As cliche as it may sound, this book made me see in a whole new spectrum. I will read this book again. Also, if you like to read from authors who deserve it, Anderson is funny, nice, and sweet. I recommend that everyone open their mind and give this amazing book a chance.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was awful. I felt that this new element (sure it was being lead up to) but it was horribly rushed, and I would have wanted it introduced better, maybe even a little more in depth. The novel, I found predictable.. and it was really a dissapointment. I honestly wouldn't reccommend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Something is wrong with Allison. She just woke up in a hospital room, covered in self-inflicted scratches. No one is telling her why she is there, or why she is being transferred to a psychiatric facility for teens. This is particularly disturbing for Allison because her mind has never worked the way normal people's minds work. Her mother has always encouraged her to not talk about it because it isn't normal. She sees stars when dishes clink together. She can taste lies (they make her sick) and smell hope. She can measure someone's personality by the letters in their name. When Allison learns that her classmate, Tori, is missing, she suddenly remembers she was the last person to see Tori before she disintegrated. This is what caused Allison's breakdown. It is why she is now in the psychiatric facility. While everyone in the outside world scrambles to find Tori, Allison has to deal with the fact that she killed her. Or did she? Did it all really happen, or is Allison actually crazy? Was this all in her mind? This book sucked me in from the first page. There is obviously something wrong with Allison, and since the book is told in first person, the reader struggles right along with her to figure out what is going on. Is she crazy? Did this really happen? Did Tori really disintegrate, and if so, how is that at all possible? Allison must find the answers herself along with the help of some very convincing and strong supporting characters. The writing is vivid and fluid. The tone is perfect. I was completely, 100% sucked in - until the big reveal at the end. The reveal that I won't explain here because it is a huge spoiler. I will admit that I was not expecting this twist at all. Typically, I like a good twist, but I can't decide how I feel about this one. It just seemed to come way out of left field. I think the problem I had with it is that I just couldn't really buy into it, and honestly I really don't know why I'm having such a hard time with it. I held off on writing this review for three days hoping that maybe I'd have a moment of clarity and my feelings about the book would settle, but they haven't. It's making me feel a little psycho myself. What I can say is that Ms. Anderson is a gifted writer and a great storyteller. Her characters are well-rounded and believable. The story had me completely engaged until the end. And the ending is why I can't quite give it a full four stars. (Review copy based on an Advanced Readers copy courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley)
thelittlebookworm More than 1 year ago
Alison wakes up in a mental institution with no memory of how she got there. As she begins to remember what happened, she also remembers confessing to killing a classmate. But how she remembers that event doesn't make any sense because people just don't disintegrate. Do they? As Alison struggles to make sense of that event, she always begins unraveling the mysteries of her own mind and her special abilities. So this was different. It starts Girl, Interrupted and then sharply detours into science fiction. Alison wakes up in the psych ward of a hospital covered in scratches and bruises with no memory of what happened. She is then moved to a mental health institution for young adults to recover and maybe tell what happened to her classmate, Tori, who disappeared the same day that Alison went crazy. The description of Pine Hills, the place that Alison goes, is really well written and very realistic. I could picture the place in my mind perfectly and it had a nice mix of patients that really illustrated the story the author was trying to tell. Another aspect of Alison's story is her synesthesia. I've read a few books about this condition before and was interested to see it employed in this book. I liked how it was made integral part of the story but was not the point of the story. Alison didn't even realize that her extrasensory abilities had a name until part way through the story. It gave the story some interesting depth and played nicely into the climax of the story.
KidLitWriter More than 1 year ago
"Once upon a time there was a girl who was special. This is not her story. Unless you count the part where I killed her." 16-year-old Alison Jeffries wakes up battered and bruised, but has no recollection how this happened. She awoke on the psychiatric wing of a hospital. Soon after, Alison is transferred to Pine Hills Psychiatric Treatment Center, which specializes in "youths in crisis." Tori Beaugrand is missing and Alison has confessed to her murder. There is only one problem: Tori's body cannot be found - anywhere. Alison slowly recalls the events of the night Tori died. They argued and then exchanged punches. Alison swung and Tori vanished. Tori's blood, on Alison's knuckles, is all that remains. Alison has always been an odd girl. She sees, hears, and often tastes the world around her differently than most. Alison sees red when she sees the number two; clang spoons and she'll see stars. Alison has synesthesia (the ability to taste and object or see it in a different color than it actually is), and, according Dr. Faraday, tetrachromacy (the ability to see the ultraviolet spectrum of light; to see colors in all spectrums). Just as Alison could see that a perfectly looking peach was actually spoiled on the inside, she knew there was something a bit off about Tori; the most perfect human she has ever see. Tori was super-model beautiful, genius smart and popular. At home, mother-daughter tensions run high. Alison's mother has been trying to deny her daughters "quirks," often fearing Alison was mentally ill, like her own mother who could see, hear and taste things that were not visible to others. Dr. Faraday, a graduate student from the University of Africa, is not who is claims to be, nor is Tori Beaugrand. If Alison is to prove she is not a murderer, she must believe in one and find the other. Ultraviolet is a rollercoaster of a ride. There is the intrigue of murder, the insanity of institutionalization, and the inventiveness of alien life. A murder mystery, a psychological thriller, and science fiction all neatly rolled into 300 pages of "I-can't-put-it-down." Alison is a compelling teen with a dysfunctional family and backstabbing friends. Dr. Minta, Alison's psychiatrist, is methodical, not straying from his diagnostic manual and medication regimens. Dr. Sebastian Faraday, who named himself after Michael Faraday, one of the greatest experimental scientists ever, is a brilliant . . . ah, no spoilers, sorry, but when he appears in Alison's life he allows the teen to understand the craziness. The abilities Alison possesses are gifts, not the sickness her mother believes them to be. The high school squabbles are realistic. The sci-fi, or paranormal, is intelligent, intriguing, and inventive. This is one of those books, when you have reached the end, will make you think "Wow." note: received from netgalley, courtesy of the publisher.
MitsuMarshmallow on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Ultraviolet is a brilliant book (well about 3 quarters of it) about a girl in a psychiatric facility. I thought the book was an amazing insight into the life of someone living with synesthesia; which you will learn more of later in the book. The book was believable and realistic, I wanted to know more about this special ability (or perhaps illness) she had, and how she had gotten in that facility, what happened to this girl who disappeared. My curiosity got the better of me and later in the book I became extremely disappointed by what the murder mystery turned out to be... time travel?! Are you kidding me...Anyway, this book has a romantic, disturbing sort of twist when Alison falls in love with an alleged university researcher, who turns out to NOT be a university researcher etc. blah, blah, blah,Turns out these people are from the future or something, the ending I thought was entirely silly and I would not recommend this to people who want a hard-hitting read. For me it was childish, an ending that made me hit my forehead with the palm of my hand. 3 and a half stars for the 3 quarters of the book I enjoyed! Initially a good read and I would recommend the book if the ending was re-written!
amanderson on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This suspenseful young adult novel had a stellar beginning, a good mysterious premise, and wonderfully descriptive writing, but it suffered from a little too much clouded genre bending that overwhelmed the plot a bit. Teenager Alison wakes up in the psychiatric unit of a hospital, not sure why she's there but knowing it's not good. She believes she has killed someone, a beautiful and popular teen named Tori at her school whom she never liked. The first person narrative, her fear and dread, and her synesthetic perceptions of her world (such as hearing "faint blue splashes of footsteps on tile") drew me right in. Turns out the police and psychiatrists also think she may have had something nefarious to do with Tori's disappearance, but noone's quite sure what happened - not even Alison. It had something to do with the wrongness she always felt about Tori, the strange birthmark only she could see on the other teen, the horrible high pitched sound she heard just before whatever happened. But, Alison's daily life is filled with unusual perceptions that she learned to keep strictly to herself, since her synesthesia is undiagnosed, and her feelings about Tori were just another secret. Alison is involuntarily committed and transferred to a psychiatric institution for troubled teens, and she is determined to get herself discharged. The suspense ratchets up from there, as she gets to know the other inmate teens, has an adversarial relationship with the admitting doc, and tries to keep herself and the increasingly disturbing synesthetic sensations under control, and to find out what happened that day with Tori. It's an enjoyable fast read and I think teens will enjoy it, but I do wish the author had stuck with the good mystery and science fiction plot elements, rather than also taking the story arc into the over-the-top unexplainable fantasy realm with Alison's abilities. An author's note explains more about synesthesia. I read an e-galley of the book courtesy of Netgalley.
JRlibrary on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this story right up until the point where we found out where Mr. Faraday comes from, and after that, the book was just ruined for me. I don't know what I expected the solution to Alison's synethesia and other problems was going to be, but what was presented in the book was NOT it, and just didn't work for me. I'll be interested in seeing what the students think of it.
EKAnderson on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I simply cannot tell you how much I loved ULTRAVIOLET by R.J. Anderson. No, really. This book is so full of twists and turns that I¿m afraid of giving some seriously good stuff away. Suffice to say, it was one of the best books I read this summer (lucky me, I got an early copy) and it will be one of the best books you read this fall.Here are some things I can tell you:1. ULTRAVIOLET is about a girl who is in a psychiactric facility.2. ULTRAVIOLET is about a girl who has something that you and I might have heard called synesthesia, but which her religious mother has told her is a curse. In fact, Alison can¿t talk about it and has decided that when she sees colors and tastes sounds, she keeps it to herself, because she doesn¿t want to be crazy.3. ULTRAVIOLET is about a girl who is suspected of murdering a classmate. And, in fact, she isn¿t even sure herself that she didn¿t do it. That doesn¿t mean she¿s about to confess though. Not to her mom or her shrink. Not to the police. Not to the cute pyromaniac (or any of the other nutjobs at the hospital. And not even to the mysterious new psychologist who has chosen her for a study. Who really, truly, seems to be on Allison¿s side.4. If you read ULTRAVIOLET you will be absolutely blown away by R.J. Anderson`s elegant prose, her brilliant story, and the intimacy you feel with every single character.Watch out for this one during ALA¿s award season this year, y¿all. ULTRAVIOLET is a literary force to be reckoned with.
callmecayce on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I picked this book up because it's on the Andre Norton award shortlist and it was one of the few books I hadn't read. I don't know what I was expecting, because I'm not fond of mental institution novels (they all tend to bleed into each other), but Ultraviolet is more than just a book set in a asylum. There's a bunch of fantasy/science fiction elements that kick in about halfway through the book and then take off toward the end that makes this book pretty enjoyable. I can definitely see why it was shortlisted. Not the best of SF/F books I've read, but pretty good.
Cuna on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I was initially very attracted by the summary on the back of the book: "Once upon a time, there was a girl who was special. This is not her story. Unless you count the part where I killed her."It seemed different, and the first 120 pages or so were pretty good, when Alison first starts settling into the mental asylum. You're wondering what exactly is strong with her, although the inside jacket provides the definition for synesthesia, so if you read that you pretty much already know. However, the actual description of the experience of synesthesia is interesting to read. It starts going downhill once Alison meets Faraday and starts to fall in love with him. Her description of his dark-chocolate-over-velvet voice didn't really appeal to me, really, because paired with his violet eyes it made him immensely suspicious. And later, when it's revealed that he's basically and alien from another planet trying to find his way home, everything takes a downward spiral. Not to mention, Tori's, the girl whom Alison thought she killed, is one too, an experiment dropped off on Earth. And turns out she's not dead, just transported back to her planet (in which Tori doesn't want to stay).Really, the main..."action" of the book takes place in the last 50 or so pages. And it was badly done. Everything sort of mashed together and was, in my opinion, ridiculous. The beginning seemed to have plenty of potential--potential that was taken and executed extremely poorly. It went from interesting an haunting to cheesy and typical teenage romance. There are a whole onslaught of characters that weren't very well fleshed out. Her entire family, Dr. Minta, Cherie, Micheline, Sanajay, Kirk...all of these characters were simply just there. I liked Kirk a lot...until for some reason he suddenly turned out to be a huge jerk. Also, a lot of the other patients' pasts were simply thrown into the novel, because Faraday just mentions them offhandedly when he tells Alison that everyone has a story. Basically, started out great, then took a huge nosedive. Overall, poorly executed.
BookAddictDiary on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Ultraviolet was one of those books that snuck upon on me. I had never heard of it before coming across it on Amazon one day purely by chance, and the engaging cover just drew me in. And though the author was also unknown to me, the blurb sounded absolutely fascinating and the reviews were positive, so I thought I'd give Ultraviolet a chance.Ultraviolet tells the story of young Alison, a somewhat disturbed young woman who thinks that she killed one of the most popular -and perfect -girls at school. After being dumped into a mental institution, Alison finds that she can't keep her paranormal ability a secret forever. There she meets a mysterious scientist who takes a special interest in Alison -and seems to know all the answers.Ultraviolet is a beautifully written and frightening novel that explores the unexpected physiological side of a young woman with a secret. Alison's voice is clear, unexpected, dramatic and hauntingly beautiful. It completely draws readers in the first word to the very end, and plot will keep you flipping pages. From off-beat romances to strange scientists, to paranormal occurrences, Ultraviolet goes beyond the realm of convention and into the unexpected.Beautiful, haunting and engaging, Ultraviolet delivers a wonderful tale that readers are sure to devour.
kmartin802 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Wow! This story didn't go where I thought it was going to go. But R. J. Anderson took me on a fantastic journey. We begin with Alison in a mental hospital after suffering a breakdown. She believes that she killed a schoolmate by causing her to disintegrate. We see Alison learning to deal with the other patients and with her psychiatrist. We also learn about her life before the hospital. She has a poor relationship with her mother; loves her father but feels that he is ineffectual. We learn about her relationship with her rival Tori (the girl she thinks she killed).But mostly we learn how Alison sees the world. Letters and numbers have colors, and sounds, tastes and smells. Her senses seem cross-wired and very strong. Her psychiatrist keeps thinking that Alison has a mental illness. It is not until Sebastian Faraday comes to the hospital and begins working with Alison that she learns more about the way her senses work and realizes herself that she is not mentally ill.Faraday is the key to the left turn that the story takes from a standard teenage problem novel to science fiction. I enjoyed the whole journey. I think that readers who enjoyed Across the Universe by Beth Revis would also find this one interesting. Alison is a fascinating character that you just have to root for.
Krista23 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Alison can taste words, she can see feelings and depending on the color of the alphabet she can feel calm or upset. You may think that just sounds completely weird and I have typed the wrong words into that sentence..how can you taste words? But that is the best thing about this story. You do begin to imagine what it would be like to be able to taste a person's name.I was completely blown away with the story. I really did enjoy the first half of the book more than the second, because of the descriptions. While Alison is living in the institute she has several meetings in which she explains these things. She meets several people whom test her and you can see how she views other people, why some she'll stay a mile away from and why she tends to make friends with others. And it is not the way all of us do it either.I also enjoyed the dialogue in the book, but that is again founded with the fantastic way in which Alison has to verbally describe to the doctor on what she is seeing, tasting and feeling. How she associates with others in the institute.The story starts out with her waking up at the hospital. She is being transferred to the mental institute and she is very confused because of her coma-like state she's been in for 2 weeks. She very slowly comes to realize she is there because she was the last person to see Tori alive and maybe responsible for her murder/disappearance. Through the first half of the book she is going to group meetings, private doctor meetings and of course getting to know the other patients. In the second half of the book, it takes a very twist that I did NOT see coming, totally out of left field and she delves more into really finding out what happened to Tori because her body was never found.I completely recommend this book, especially for those interested in unusual and uncommon mental issues. I have never even heard of it and was very intrigued after reading this to Google it myself and read more about it and found that it has several different levels/forms and more common than I ever knew.Even though I may never see the alphabet in colors or taste a persons name or feelings. I sure can now imagine what it might be like, even at the most basic level. What fascinated me about this story was the detail and description of Alison's psychosis. I was also fascinated to find out it was a true psychological thing.Synesthesia. Although I have put a link here I highly suggest you do not read up on it until after you read this story. And believe me this story will get you interested in reading more about it. You can also take tests online to see if you may have signs of it as well.This book was like a Gem in a rock field. I absolutely recommend it.
theepicrat on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I have not read R.J. Anderson¿s Faery series yet, but if it is anything like Ultraviolet, I may finally get around to it sooner than later because Ultraviolet really blew my mind away and I desperately need more!The start of Ultraviolet reminds me of The Summoning with a set-up where the main character ends up psych institute that may not have her best interests in mind. However, there are no ghosts or werewolves or witchery ¿ only real people with real mental conditions with a dash of the extraordinary. Right from the start, readers get immersed in Alison¿s story and follow her as she tries to piece together what happened and understand why no one can see and taste colors like she can.I love how the chapters got labeled like in a special spectrum that pertained to Alison¿s progress ¿ and it heightened my anticipation for what happened next.Everyone in Ultraviolet had a secret or two, and just when you thought you had people figured out and characters you just can¿t live without, R.J. Anderson pulls the rug from under you and throws you in a few loops! She does it in such an way that, even though certain characters may have fallen out of favor, these same characters still have redeeming qualities. Alison may not trust them any longer, but she knows that they mean well ¿ just stay far away from her!By the time I reached the ultimate truth about Tori¿s disappearance, R.J. Anderson had me so invested in the story that I was able to suspend reality and believe anything she dished out ¿ no matter how far-fetched! This may sound rather vague, but trust me ¿ Ultraviolet may seem nothing out of the ordinary at first, but it will sneak its way into your brain and throw all your beliefs to the stars!Amazing. Flavorful. Colorful. Like a bag of Skittles, Ultraviolet will taste like a rainbow.
graceschumann on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Ultraviolet was unlike any other young adult book I have ever read. I am completely and utterly in love with it. I want to thank Net Galley so much for providing me with an advanced copy of it. When I first began Ultraviolet, I was a bit hesitant. I had heard about R.J. Anderson¿s other works but hadn¿t read any for myself yet so I didn¿t really know what to expect in terms of her writing style. I shouldn¿t have hesitated at all! Anderson really knows what she¿s doing and her talent for writing is completely obvious in this story."'Everybody has a story, Alison,' he said. 'Everybody has things they need to hide--sometimes even from themselves.'"Ultraviolet is about a girl named Alison who suffers from a rare syndrome called Synesthesia. She is able to see numbers and sounds in colors and taste different emotions. She basically is hyper-sensitive to anything she is able to see, touch, hear, smell, or taste around her. Not only that, but she is able to see things nobody else can, almost like a premonition about something or a type of x-ray vision in time, as well as sense different events that occur. When she gets in a fight with the most popular girl at school, Alison is sure she saw her disintegrate but that¿s crazy right? With the girl now missing and Alison being the last to be seen with her, she¿s suspected of having something to do with the girl¿s disappearance and placed into a psychiatric hospital to further monitor her after she claims to have killed the girl by making her explode into a million pieces. Nobody believes her and claims her different sensations are a symptom of schizophrenia. When the violet-eyed neuropsychologist, Faraday shows up, claiming to be working for a university in South Africa and wants to run a study on Alison, she starts to open up to him about secrets she¿s kept long hidden from her family and society. Her secrets about how she perceives things in sounds and colors. He insists she¿s not crazy but as the two get closer and closer, what will they uncover about the strange happenings Alison witnessed?I think Anderson really has a flair for writing and she took a completely different route with this book than most other young adult authors which really paid off. I was very pleased with the character development. There was enough back-story into each character but not too much to overwhelm the reader and they were established very well within the story. I loved Alison¿s character and how she stayed true to her convictions and what she believed. She was not swayed easily by other characters in the story to believe different things and we witnessed her character growing into maturity as the story progressed. I really enjoyed getting to know Faraday as well and loved the interaction Alison and he had throughout the story.The only thing I wish Anderson had done in this story was to perhaps go into the background of where Faraday is originally from (I don¿t want to say for fear of giving a spoiler) a little more and describe more about the experiment his ¿co-worker¿ and him were working on. Other than that it was very well put together. I was hoping the ending would be a little different but I am extremely satisfied to have found out from the author herself that there is going to be a companion novel to Ultraviolet. Suffice to say, I can¿t wait!
nlsobon on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Typically I make it a point to read the book as close to its release day as possible. ¿Ultraviolet¿ releases in the US in September. So why am I reviewing it now? Well, I made the mistake of reading a `couple¿ of pages while reading a few other books. Needless to say, I wasn¿t able to put the book down! ¿Ultraviolet¿ is the type of book that will pull you in from the very first line until the very last word. ¿Ultraviolet¿ is a rollercoaster of a book and I think its safe to say that I loved every twist and turn of this story. As stated in the synopsis (¿Once upon a time there was a girl who was special. This is not her story. Unless you count the part where I killed her.¿), ¿Ultraviolet¿ revolves around a young girls death. I¿m going to try to avoid spoilers as much as possible here, but the story revolves around Alison, the top suspect in the disappearance of Tori Beaugrand. Most of the story takes place in Pine Hills, a psychiatric institution for young people. After Tori Beaugrand goes missing, Alison becomes the main suspect as she was the last one to see her. There¿s video evidence of a fight. There¿s blood from her ring that matches Tori¿s. But there¿s no body. And what Alison remembers doesn¿t make sense. Until she meets Faraday, a young man who poses as a scientist to get closer to Alison, meeting with her during daily sessions for research. It¿s Faraday that informs Alison of her condition ¿ synesthesia.After finding out she has synesthesia, which is why her perceptions are unusual ¿ something her mother blamed on mental illness (but synesthesia is not a mental illness, it¿s a neurological condition), Alison begins to understand that she isn¿t crazy.When Kirk, a fellow patient at Pine Hills, does some digging on Faraday and finds out that he isn¿t who he says he is, Alison¿s sessions with Faraday are terminated and he is banned from returning to Pine Hills. But on a trip home, she contacts him for answers¿answers that will change everything.And that is where R.J. Anderson¿s story really shines, because everything you thought you knew¿it¿s all wrong. To say I loved this book may actually be an understatement. It was just THAT good.
summerskris on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I¿ll confess that I had a hard time deciding what to say in my review. The book left me that much awe. Ultraviolet is a complex read that really makes you think. Every time I began to grow comfortable, something else comes along. At first, I was confused about whether or not Alison¿s condition was paranormal or if she really did belong in the psychological institution. While I no longer doubt her sanity, I do wonder how her abilities will continue to develop, if there is a sequel.The story begins with Alison having been institutionalized in a mental facility for teens having confessed to the murder of her classmate Tori; the problem is that not only is Tori¿s body nowhere to be found, Alison¿s condition is difficult to diagnose. While she appears sane, she associates names, letters, and numbers with colors, taste, and personality. I found it fascinating how each chapter number is associated with something. It brings us one step closer to understanding how Alison¿s mind works, along with the detailed imagery that Anderson works into the story.While the story begins as somewhat of a slow read with Anderson developing Alison¿s environment in the mental facility, there is no lack of intrigue. The cast of characters in the psychiatric ward is diverse and entertaining, making Alison seem tame in comparison. You will wonder along with Alison how she ended up there and why she isn¿t allowed to go home, though it¿s so apparent to Alison that she¿s sane. Every time you begin to suspect that you understand the story, Anderson brings in a new twist¿such as Faraday and then the scene with Kirk in the library. You begin to question everything you thought you knew all over again. Then come the clues, and you work with Alison to understand what¿s going on. That¿s the fun part.I really loved Faraday as a character. Whereas everyone else acts as though he or she knows what is best for Alison, Faraday tries to understand her as a person. He doesn¿t treat her as mental; he listens to her, and he believes in her. Alison really needed a supportive character in her life, and Faraday provides this constancy for her.There¿s an amazing twist at the end of the story. I loved learning the truth about Tori¿s disappearance and more about Alison¿s condition. The ending was just breathtaking and oh so bittersweet. While I love¿and hope for¿happy endings, real life isn¿t always so satisfying. Sometimes, we need a little tragedy, and Ultraviolet has a powerful ending that will stay with you long after you put down your book or e-reader.Ultraviolet is a literal out-of-this-world adventure filled with mystery and intrigue as Alison struggles to uncover the truth behind Tori¿s disappearance and prove her sanity. With each new discovery, readers will wonder who can be trusted and even question Alison¿s sanity in the process. Ultimately, it is a story of self-discovery and learning to trust both in others and in oneself. It has been the best out-of-this-world read that I¿ve had this year.
poetrytoprose on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This review will be as vague as possible because the less you know about the book, the better. Trust me when I say that it¿s a standout novel, though. Everything from the setting in a mental institution to the main character¿s abilities made this a very enjoyable and surprising read!Alison was an interesting narrator from the start. It was easy to have my own suspicions about her since the details of her situation are fuzzy; we get a very clear look of how unstable she feels. Because of this, it took a while to truly get a grasp on her motivations. However, it was also easy to understand her own confusion and see how vulnerable she was. Plus, how cool does synesthesia sound? It obviously has drawbacks for Alison, but the idea of it was very interesting to learn about.I loved the subtlety of the relationship between Alison and Faraday. Comprised of mutual trust, understanding, and friendship, I was completely hooked to the progression between the characters. It didn¿t take over everything else in the novel at all and yet there was enough that I truly felt the bond Faraday and Alison. What I loved most is that their relationship helped in bringing Alison out of her shell. She didn¿t change overnight, but I gradually saw a spark of confidence in her. Now that I think about it, Alison did the same for Faraday, too. There was definitely a good balance with the two.There was enough foreshadowing throughout the course of the novel that nothing came as a huge surprise for me, but the author did an excellent job with the execution of the reveals. I anxiously looked forward to seeing how the characters would react and Anderson maintained a perfect blend of mystery and intrigue throughout the novel.I think I read that there is a sequel in the works and I¿m very excited to see the direction R.J. Anderson takes the story next. That said, I would have been perfectly content if Ultraviolet had remained a standalone. The conclusion wrapped up the events in this book well enough while still leaving a few things up to the imagination. I¿ll eagerly look forward to more of these characters, though!
stephxsu on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Alison Jeffries is a synesthete¿a person whose senses are ¿crossed¿ so that she experiences multiple sensory experiences whereas most people just experience one¿but she doesn¿t know this. All she knows is that she¿s been this way her whole life, and has to hide her ability, and that this condition may or may not have killed her classmate, Tori Beaugrand. Locked in a mental institute, Alison struggles to understand who she is and what she¿s done, but it¿s not until the arrival of a sympathetic researcher that she finally begins to understand¿and, in doing so, has her world turned upside-down.R.J. Anderson steps away from faeries and tackles an entirely new genre and writing style in her latest novel, ULTRAVIOLET. ULTRAVIOLET is weird and crazy, but surprisingly, this genre-defying novel is an enjoyable success.The less you know about ULTRAVIOLET before you read it, the better your reading experience will most likely be. ULTRAVIOLET¿s plot doesn¿t quite twist and turn, per se, but reader engagement is primarily predicated on unexpected revelations. This means that the characters feel somewhat lacking. Alison doesn¿t stand out as a protagonist, though she is, fortunately, not a damsel-in-distress. Supporting characters take on rather one-dimensional roles: you¿ve got yourself a plethora of fairly stereotypical mental patients, and the lifelong tension between Alison and her mother feels undeveloped.Fortunately, the odd appeal of the story makes up for lackluster characters. While the writing is elementary, the story inexplicably sucks you in: you¿re right there alongside Alison, having your mind blown and trying desperately to figure out where in this new version of the world you fit. Just when you thought the story couldn¿t get any stranger, R.J. Anderson throws you another curveball. It¿s pretty incredible, actually, how far she manages to stretch the story while still making everything fit together logically!Overall, ULTRAVIOLET is not a masterpiece, but it was an entertainingly crazy read. Definitely recommended to readers who look more for originality in their reads.
booktwirps on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Something is wrong with Allison. She just woke up in a hospital room, covered in self-inflicted scratches. No one is telling her why she is there, or why she is being transferred to a psychiatric facility for teens. This is particularly disturbing for Allison because her mind has never worked the way normal people¿s minds work. Her mother has always encouraged her to not talk about it because it isn¿t normal. She sees stars when dishes clink together. She can taste lies (they make her sick) and smell hope. She can measure someone¿s personality by the letters in their name.When Allison learns that her classmate, Tori, is missing, she suddenly remembers she was the last person to see Tori before she disintegrated. This is what caused Allison¿s breakdown. It is why she is now in the psychiatric facility. While everyone in the outside world scrambles to find Tori, Allison has to deal with the fact that she killed her. Or did she? Did it all really happen, or is Allison actually crazy? Was this all in her mind?This book sucked me in from the first page. There is obviously something wrong with Allison, and since the book is told in first person, the reader struggles right along with her to figure out what is going on. Is she crazy? Did this really happen? Did Tori really disintegrate, and if so, how is that at all possible? Allison must find the answers herself along with the help of some very convincing and strong supporting characters. The writing is vivid and fluid. The tone is perfect. I was completely, 100% sucked in ¿ until the big reveal at the end. The reveal that I won¿t explain here because it is a huge spoiler. I will admit that I was not expecting this twist at all. Typically, I like a good twist, but I can¿t decide how I feel about this one. It just seemed to come way out of left field. I think the problem I had with it is that I just couldn¿t really buy into it, and honestly I really don¿t know why I¿m having such a hard time with it. I held off on writing this review for three days hoping that maybe I¿d have a moment of clarity and my feelings about the book would settle, but they haven¿t. It¿s making me feel a little psycho myself.What I can say is that Ms. Anderson is a gifted writer and a great storyteller. Her characters are well-rounded and believable. The story had me completely engaged until the end. And the ending is why I can¿t quite give it a full four stars.(Review copy based on an Advanced Readers copy courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley)
Jibar on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
GENERALThe novel centers around Alison Jeffries who is admitted to a psychiatric hospital by her mother after a mental breakdown, babbling on about ¿disintegrating Tori Beaugrand¿. The first two hundred pages or so were an easy read ¿ that is to say I liked what I read and desperately wanted to now what happened to Tori. I didn't believe Alison had actually disintegrated her right from the start.The novel doesn't have a lot of action, the main part of the story is told in Alison's head but that is not a bad thing. The occasional flash backs make Tori not very likeable and I found myself wondering more than a few times how a girl like that could be so popular ¿ of course later on it is explained how that could be.However, the resolution of the plot in the last 100 pages did not do anything for me. CONSI don¿t mean to say that the resolution of the conflict/murder/plot was unbelievable because it was written well. Even though there is the issue of the seemingly mentally ill narrator so I suppose we will never know whether any of this really happened. For me, the solution was just horribly clichéd. I¿m not going to go into it because I want to keep this review spoiler free but I found the clichés to be a little much.PROSSome of you might be wondering where all the stars come from if I dislike clichés so much. The writing was nice and while I wouldn¿t say that Ultraviolet (which is actually a hint to the plot) is a page turner, it did make me want to find out what happened next. The narrator is likeable and in several scenes I found myself pitying her history AND her present circumstances.Near the beginning, when Alison (the narrator) is shipped off into a psychiatric hospital I found her to be overreacting but that was mostly due to the fact that I as the reader didn¿t know yet what was ¿wrong¿ (and in so many ways right) with her.The characters introduced in the novel, and mainly those who were staying at the psychiatric hospital Pine Hills were believable and even likeable which I found astounding considering the mental illnesses they suffered from.CONCLUSIONAll in all, Ultraviolet definitely deserves a buy and a read even with the cliché. It isn¿t one you read often anymore ¿ especially with all the vampire literature around ¿ and the writing and characters make it a good novel.
ReadingFanatic09 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was really an unexpected read to say the least. I felt like the description didn't give me very much to go on but left me intrigued enough to request it from NetGalley. I'm really glad that I did! I found Ultraviolet to be an intriguing novel that pulled me in and kept me guessing. When Alison wakes up in a mental institution covered in (apparently self-inflicted) cuts and no recollection of how she got them, I found myself instantly drawn to this character and her mystery. I immediately wanted to know more about why she was in the mental ward and what she had done to warrant her moving her to Pine Hills. As someone (basically) accused of murder and assumed to have a severe mental illness, I was struck by Alison's will and determination throughout. As she deals with her sensory abilities and learns to open up a little, I felt like I was able to connect with this character, even though we share little to nothing in common. She made me want to be her friend (despite the fact that she pushes all of her would-be friends away). I also thought that Anderson did a fabulous job of giving you just enough information about Alison and her condition that you question her sanity (and humanity) throughout the whole story.As the story moves along, parts one and two were cohesive and captivating, but I found myself a bit thrown-off by part three. I almost knew it was coming but there was just something about it that made it disconnect a bit from parts one and two. In the end, I thought all three parts rolled together for a good story, but it was honestly the first two parts that made me fall in love with the story and the characters. And...that's about all I want to say in case you decide to read it! This is definitely a novel I think you want to go in to without too much information so you can discover everything along the way!This is a fabulous read for fans of YA science fiction, especially perhaps Madeleine L'Engle.