Monday, 1 July 2013

Undercurrent by Paul Blackwell

Title: Undercurrent
Author: Paul Blackwell
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: July 23rd, 2013
Pre-Order: Amazon

Goodreads Summary

A shadowy figure. An intense roar. The sensation of falling—fast.

That’s all Callum Harris remembers from his tumble over the waterfall. But when he wakes up in a hospital bed and finds his best friend trying to kill him, Callum knows something is seriously wrong. Unfortunately for him, the mysteries are just getting started.

Why are his parents acting like he’s some big sports star all of a sudden? And why are all the buildings in town more run-down than Callum remembers? Worst of all...what happened to Callum’s brother? Either Callum has gone seriously crazy or something happened when he went over the falls. Something impossible. Callum needs answers, and now. Because in this twisted new version of the life Callum knew, his former best friend isn’t the only one who wants to see him dead.

Filled with mind-bending suspense and unsettling thrills, Undercurrent is a grippingly paced teen debut that will pull you under and never let go.

“It’s black where I am. All night sky and no stars”

I may have been a little lenient with the rating of this book but after reading two disappointing YA books this was definitely a relief so I decided to round up instead of rounding down.

This book starts with Callum waking up in a hospital but things aren’t the way he remembers them. For starters, his best friend tries to kill him when he is still in the hospital!

Callum is a complicated character. I am not sure whether I liked him or not because there were times when I was seriously annoyed with him but I never actually disliked him. Some of the things he does are just really stupid. He tries to go with the flow when he should have tried to figure things out right from the start. I, for one, would have felt a lot better if he had actually tried to ‘improve’ his image, everyone thinks he is an asshole and he does nothing to change that. I also think he should have tried to work things out with Bryce like he did with Willow. Aside from that, what I liked most about him was how much he cared about his family; it was evident from all the flashbacks.

I think the strongest relationship in this book was the one between Callum and Cole. I think it was portrayed really realistically. Cole can be a bully but he clearly loves his younger brother. That surprise in the end though, that really was sad.

One of the plus points in this book for me was that there wasn’t romance. Usually that wouldn’t be a plus point but after reading two YA’s that had HORRIBLE romances, it was kind of a relief. That is not to say the main character doesn’t share any relationship with a female. We know that Callum obviously has a crush on Willow but the thing is, the relationship between Callum and Willow is very well developed.

This book has a very interesting scientific concept and I think the author puts a rather original spin on it. I did guess what was going on pretty early on but the author still managed to surprise me.

The book did have an open ending but it didn’t bother me so much, mostly because I was so relieved. For most of the book I was shouting (in my head) for things to turn out the way I wanted them to and they did. I still have many questions but there is supposed to be a sequel. I hope it does get approved because with such an interesting concept, it would be a shame if there wasn’t more.


  1. I have this on my TBR pile, I'm glad you enjoyed it. Gives me hope! It sounds like such a promising book.

    1. I cannot wait to see what you think! :D


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