Review: Liv, Forever by Amy Talkington

When Liv Bloom lands an art scholarship at Wickham Hall, it’s her ticket out of the foster system. Liv isn’t sure what to make of the school’s weird traditions and rituals, but she couldn’t be happier. For the first time ever, she has her own studio, her own supply of paints. Everything she could want.

Then she meets Malcolm Astor, a legacy student, a fellow artist, and the one person who’s ever been able to melt her defenses. Liv’s only friend at Wickham, fellow scholarship kid Gabe Nichols, warns her not to get involved, but life is finally going Liv’s way, and all she wants to do is enjoy the ride.

But Liv’s bliss is doomed. Weeks after arriving, she is viciously murdered and, in death, she discovers that she’s the latest victim of a dark conspiracy that has claimed many lives. Cursed with the ability to see the many ghosts on Wickham’s campus, Gabe is now Liv’s only link to the world of the living. To Malcolm.

Together, Liv, Gabe, and Malcolm fight to expose the terrible truth that haunts the halls of Wickham. But Liv must fight alone to come to grips with the ultimate star-crossed love.

          I was drawn into this book because 1) ghosts 2) really cool cover. I also met the author at an event maybe a year ago. I was really excited to read this book since I was a huge fan of Bad Girls Don’t Die. Going into it, you already know what you’re going in for: romance, ghosts, and a sinister mystery in a super old and prestigious school. I have to say, I enjoyed this book. 

          I really liked Liv (and for all those wondering, the author has confirmed that the title is pun intended), she had her own faults and she had the oh so typical teen angst, however she was still very real. Later on in the book when she’s killed, she goes back and thinks about how she treated her adoptive parents and feels guilty about it. Liv realizes the mistakes she’s made while she was still alive and reflects on it instead of pointing fingers—well she doespoint fingers, but come on, the girl was murdered. 

          At the risk of being a bit spoiler-y, I’m going to quickly comment on another reason why I liked her character as…vaguely as possible. When she becomes a ghost, she comes in contact with the other ghosts lingering around her campus. Immediately, she wants to contact them. Ask them questions and tries to find out why she was killed. This goes against Gabe, who refuses to make any contact with the ghosts. This is cleared up later on, but I just loved that about Liv. 
Now going into the book, I know there’s going to be romance, and honestly, I found it very sweet. It was a bit rushed, but the book isn’t even 300 pages so I’m not too strung up over it, and plus, even though I felt it was rushed, so did Liv. So it’s nice to know that Talkington seems to have written that in instead of blindly throwing in a love interest. Malcolm is very sweet and charming (as expected of a privileged boy taught to run the crowd, right?), and even though he was kind of leaning toward that Augustus Waters level of manic pixie dream boy, I still felt like I couldn’t get angry at him. Malcolm was just very genuinely sweet. 

          One thing that I didn’t understand with the story is why all of the ghosts had to be girls. It’s interesting because I had asked Talkington about this. When she was describing her book, she included that all of the ghosts were girls and I had asked if that was intentional. Talkington said, yes, it was intentional and that it would be cleared up. However, at the end of the story, I still didn’t understand why it had to be girls. 
          Other than that, I was very entertained with this book and I’m glad I got to Talkington about this briefly. It had a very tender romance, interesting mystery, and great dynamic among Gabe, Malcolm, and Liv. They were a great trio to read.

Final Thoughts: A fun concept and an entertaining read and you knew what you were getting into.

Title: Liv, Forever
Author: Amy Talkington
Published: March 11, 2014
Pages: 280

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