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A Certain Slant of Light | [Laura Whitcomb]

A Certain Slant of Light

In the class of the high school English teacher she has been haunting, Helen feels them: for the first time in 130 years, human eyes are looking at her. They belong to a boy, a boy who has not seemed remarkable until now. And Helen, terrified, but intrigued, is drawn to him. The fact that he is in a body and she is not presents this unlikely couple with their first challenge.
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Publisher's Summary

In the class of the high school English teacher she has been haunting, Helen feels them: for the first time in 130 years, human eyes are looking at her. They belong to a boy, a boy who has not seemed remarkable until now. And Helen, terrified, but intrigued, is drawn to him. The fact that he is in a body and she is not presents this unlikely couple with their first challenge. But as the lovers struggle to find a way to be together, they begin to discover the secrets of their former lives and of the young people they come to possess.

©2005 Laura Whitcomb; (P)2006 Random House, Inc. Listening Library, an imprint of the Random House Audio Publishing Company

What the Critics Say

"The author's poetic prose, capturing the spirit and sorrow of the two unearthly protagonists, will likely have a mesmerizing effect." (Publishers Weekly)
"Whitcomb writes with a grace that befits Helen's more modulated world while depicting contemporary society with sharp insight." (School Library Journal)

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What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (144 )
5 star
 (53)
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 (58)
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Overall
3.9 (59 )
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Story
4.2 (58 )
5 star
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2 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Alexis United States 01-19-08
    Alexis United States 01-19-08 Member Since 2006

    In pursuit of truth, justice, and an end to spoilers!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    159
    ratings
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    381
    60
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    Performance
    Story
    "Lovely, unusual ghost story"

    A Certain Slant of Light is a different slant on a ghost story, and I really enjoyed watching the way it progressed. The two main characters are ghosts looking in on the living world, at first experiencing it without being noticed and later going unnoticed for what they really are. The prose is lovely and elegant, the story emotional, and once I got into this it was hard to stop listening. The story felt fully fleshed out, and yet I was left wanting a bit more at the end. That's probably a mark of a great book but for myself I would have prefered just a little bit more info in a couple areas, but overall this was a great listen!

    This is very much a love story, so be warned to expect a bit of mush. I found that part of the plot a bit rushed, not in terms of pacing but for the characters, and there were several times I found myself aghast at the lack of foresight shown by the main characters in some ways. Let's just say that not all ghosts haunt Girl Scout meetings, where we were taught to tread through the forest so as to leave as little damage as possible! That's a thought that was with me pretty much throughout the whole book!

    This is listed as a young adult novel, but it's one of the most adult ones I've come across and I wouldn't think of limiting this to a teenage audience. This is not at all a kiddie story. There's a good bit of sexual content, which, although never crude, might be something for which parents might want to prescreen for younger teens.

    The narrator is just right for the part. She perfectly captures the hushed urgency of the gentle-souled Helen, a ghost desperate to communicate yet terrified of notice.

    19 of 19 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tammy Smithville, TN, United States 09-28-09
    Tammy Smithville, TN, United States 09-28-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    14
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    7
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    "WOW!!!!! Mesmerizing."

    I cannot brag enough about this book. It got me by surprise actually. Read the synopsis and thought...looks like a good story. Little did I know I would be soooo caught up and mesmerized with this book. Totally obsessed with it. Went thru it in a day. AMAZING!!! You wont be disappointed at all. Great love story. Lots of suspense. LOVED IT!!!!!! Want more like this one. :)

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jamie Lake City, FL, United States 09-22-10
    Jamie Lake City, FL, United States 09-22-10 Member Since 2009

    Fantasy & Sci-Fi lover who mostly refuses to read books without their audiobook counterparts. How else can a girl get any housework done?

    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
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    "Beautiful Story!"

    This is one of the best audiobooks I have listened to! Once I started, I went straight through, not stopping until I was done. No joke! Laura Whitcomb did a superb job with this story. I thought the narrator was spot on; her sweet and harmless demenor was a perfect portrayal of Helen. I didn't expect this story to tug at my heart strings, but it sure did. It is such a beautiful story and I would definitely recommend it. It was 100% worth the credit point. =)

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen Mars, PA, United States 03-21-10
    Karen Mars, PA, United States 03-21-10 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    80
    ratings
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    13
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    "I never stopped listening"

    This book had depth I did not expect. It is a fantastic love story about death, living, and forgiveness. It seems a bit too mature for teenagers, to me. The sex in the book is not overly explicit or in bad taste, though. It reminded me a little of the Twilight books. The charecters were emotionaly very mature and noble, with some old fashioned type vaules.
    The narrators voice and style were perfect. All around an awesome book. I sure wish there were more like this. I wonder if this author has any other treasures in her future.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Artsygirl71 California 01-07-10
    Artsygirl71 California 01-07-10 Listener Since 2008

    AG

    HELPFUL VOTES
    33
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    29
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    "Entertaining Book"

    Pleasantly surprised. I really enjoyed this book. Well written, unpredictable and imaginitive.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Heather Turiello Overland Park, KS USA 03-29-13
    Heather Turiello Overland Park, KS USA 03-29-13 Member Since 2006

    I'm a voracious audiobook listener, rarely found without my iPod.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
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    33
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    Story
    "A ghost story."
    Any additional comments?

    I love a good ghost story! This book tells the tale of a ghost who, as she haunts a school teacher, discovers another ghost inhabiting one of the students. She hasn't seen this before...a ghost that could reside in the body of a live human. She has only followed her teacher and is very intrigued by this other spirit. The two spirits are drawn to each other and over time find a way to live out their love stories by inhabiting bodies of the living. The humans they inhabit are not living good lives, so the story makes you think about the morality of possessing a living person, taking life from them.

    The story has a dark side and is edgier than I expected. A good YA read with some sexual and drug-related incidences...not for younger kids...

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Debbie Gloucester, VA, United States 03-17-13
    Debbie Gloucester, VA, United States 03-17-13 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Performance
    Story
    "Ghostly love story"

    This was not the most intriguing story I have ever read, it did drag slowly for me in a few areas but wading through was worth it in the end. An experience from the view of the ghost is a different outlook and interesting.

    The two souls do find each other and is sweet and heartwarming in their relationship.

    The ending wrapped this story up in a wonderful way and reading this book to get to the finale was well worth it. Joyful relief and long awaited answers for our ghost heroine are her rewards. It left me with a happy heart.










    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carmen R. Chase 11-24-10 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Overall
    "Exquisite"

    Lauren Malina's delivery of this novel is gracefully given with the spirit of the muse who possessed Laura Whitcomb inspiring her to write a novel with such mastery of literary technique that both consumes the reader's senses and invoke breathless anticipation for each proceeding word.
    The subject matter is intriguing, giving a fresh and original glance at the possibilities of the spirit world, the possibilities of life and relationships, and that of belief in the ever after.

    This novel is a treasure.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Arwen BOISE, ID, United States 09-01-12
    Arwen BOISE, ID, United States 09-01-12 Member Since 2009

    I am a book junkie...I read and enjoy a variety of stories, so please don't "define me" by one book or review! :)

    HELPFUL VOTES
    322
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    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Interesting, ghostly love story"

    This is a well written, unusual take on a "paranormal" love story. I found it engrossing and entertaining while I listened, throughout the course of the story. The narrator uses the softer range of her voice, which suits the ghotsly aspect of the main character and the story, ..though some listeners may find it a little too relaxing if they usually listen while working out or other more active activities. As other reviewers have noted, it may seem (depending on your taste or perspective) that the two main characters engage in a physical relationship quite quickly, but you have to remember that the people they actually are/(were) are not underage. Parents may want to preview and/or at least have a conversation with preteens or younger teens before enjoying this story. Overall, a very good story with fitting narration.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cynthia Maloney Waltham Ma 05-26-12
    Cynthia Maloney Waltham Ma 05-26-12 Member Since 2011
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    2
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    "A fun read."
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Yes I would recommend this book. It wouldn't be one of the first I'd think of to recommend but if someone asked me about it I would say that it's a great rainy day book to curl up with. It's well written and it is a unusual tale to tell. I enjoyed it a lot, but it's not a book that "sticks to your ribs" so to speak. It was fun to read.


    What other book might you compare A Certain Slant of Light to and why?

    I found it similar to "The Lovely Bones" as both are stories told from the perception of the ghost.


    Have you listened to any of Lauren Molina’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have not listened to anything else by Lauren Molina, so I have nothing to compare it to. I do think she was absolutely perfect for this book. Her voice was soft and haunting and very easy to listen to.


    Was A Certain Slant of Light worth the listening time?

    Yes- I really enjoyed spending the time one lazy Saturday listening to this story. I stayed up late into the night to finish it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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