Black Flowers, White Lies

Featured
 
3.3 (3)
 
0.0 (0)
2281 1
Black Flowers, White Lies
Age Range
12+
Release Date
October 04, 2016
ISBN
978-1510709881
Buy This Book
      

Her father died before she was born, but Ella Benton knows they have a supernatural connection. Since her mother discourages these beliefs, Ella keeps her cemetery visits secret. But she may not be the only one with secrets. Ella’s mother might be lying about how Dad died sixteen years ago. Newfound evidence points to his death in a psychiatric hospital, not as a result of a tragic car accident as her mother always claimed. After a lifetime of just the two of them, Mom suddenly feels like a stranger. When a handprint much like the one Ella left on her father’s tombstone mysteriously appears on the bathroom mirror, at first she wonders if Dad is warning her of danger as he did once before. If it’s not a warning, could her new too-good-to-be-true boyfriend be responsible for the strange occurrences? Or maybe it’s the grieving building superintendent whose dead daughter strongly resembles Ella? As the unexplained events become more frequent and more sinister, Ella becomes terrified about who—or what—might harm her. Soon the evidence points to someone else entirely: Ella herself. What if, like her father, she’s suffering from a breakdown? In this second novel from award-winning author Yvonne Ventresca, Ella desperately needs to find answers, no matter how disturbing the truth might be.

Editor reviews

3 reviews

Overall rating 
 
3.3
Plot 
 
3.3  (3)
Characters 
 
3.3  (3)
Writing Style 
 
3.3  (3)
Enjoyable To Read
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0
Black Flowers, White Lies follows Ella as she struggles to accept her new family, her failing friendships, and how to distinguish what is real. This is a novel that centers on psychological affects and succeeds to be realistic and scary.

Ella my not have met her dad, but she cares for him a lot. No one could replace him, which makes it that much more difficult for Ella to accept Stanley and his son, Blake. To make matters worse? Blake is handsome, and kind, and pulls her out of all these lies because he can't stand to see Ella fall for something so fake. So maybe she can accept him after all. Especially since he's so helpful when all these mysterious and terrifying things keep happening to her. Ella learns however, that not everything is as it seems, and that perhaps not everyone is who they say they are.

"I know this even though I never met him. He died before I was born..." (Pg 1)

Ella is a strong believer in the paranormal world because she whole-heartedly believes that her father is watching over her. Ghosts, karma, fate, the universe; they all have possibilities that Ella believes in. She doesn't tell many people because no one seems to share her belief, until Blake listens and fails to mock her for it. Ella is naive and honest and far too trusting. She is easily freaked out and manipulated, easily pulled in by a kind smile or love for animals. She is an easy target in this novel, and someone takes advantage of that. They twist her world into something dark and dangerous, they frame her and deceive her. Through it all, her belief in the paranormal never seems to waver.

"I can't help feeling like something momentous has transpired. I'm a believer in karma and fate and the mysterious workings of the universe. As I watch Beautiful Boy walk away, I hope that meeting him again is meant to be." (Pg 7)

Blake is nice and seems to always be there for Ella when she needs him. But what do we really know about him? He is her step-brother, he's good looking, he is seriously into psychology, and he has a girlfriend. How is it that the author makes us feel like we know him so well when we really don't?

Grace is a rather horrible friend. To Ella at least since they have little in common. I was actually glad when we didn't see much of her after Blake's introduction.

The writing is smooth and connects perfectly with our main character as it comes off naive just like Ella, and honest and innocent. It helps readers connect with the character and fully see ad understand how her mind works. For the most part, it works well with the story, but at times it seems a tad too childish. As for the plot, it didn't really pick up until the end where the thrill really comes into place to give us a high-powered ending. Some parts were predictable and others seemed rushed.

Overall, Black Flowers, White Lies is a thrilling, mysterious tale that reads quickly.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
overall enjoyable read that explores the ways of the mind
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0
Ella Benton misses her father every day, even though he died when she was very young. She visits his grave and attempts a séance to talk to him. As her mother is about to marry again, Ella doesn’t want her father to be forgotten. When Ella’s soon-to-be new stepbrother reveals that he overheard a big secret about her father’s death from her mom, Ella is shocked. Instead of her father dying in a car crash, he may have died in a mental hospital. Together, they try to get to the bottom of what really happened, and mysterious clues lead to Ella wondering if even she has been hiding something from herself.

What I Loved:

BLACK FLOWERS WHITE LIES has a fantastic, engaging premise. I love the set-up of the mystery behind her father’s death and the creepy happenings from the handprint on the mirror to the bloody signs. Alongside the mystery is a complex look at what happens when two families merge together and how to keep memories alive, even while moving on.

Ella’s dynamic relationship with her mother is another highlight. She loves her mom dearly, but when she suspects her mom has been keeping the truth from her, Ella wonders if she can trust her mom. Her mother is protective and supportive, even if a bit misguided at times, and their relationship feels so realistic and genuine.

What Left Me Wanting More:

While the premise held so much promise, the plot ultimately did not work well for me. The signs pointing to the truth are a bit obvious, and I was easily able to work out what was going on before I made it halfway through the story. However, readers who aren’t well read in psychological thrillers may find the twists more shocking.

Final Verdict:

Though I didn’t find any surprises in the story, BLACK FLOWERS WHITE LIES is an overall enjoyable read that explores the ways of the mind.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 1
Black Flowers, White Lies
(Updated: September 20, 2016)
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0

Ella still believes her dead father looks out for her. But her mother and BFF don't believe in the paranormal. Ella's mother quickly remarries and estranged son of her new stepfather shows up. Around this time strange things happen to Ella like a hand print on her mirror. Ella 'thinks' it's her father trying to communicate and warn her about something. Her new stepbrother Blake is handsome but also seems almost too quick to become close to her. After their parents go on a Parisian honeymoon, this is when the strange factor increases to the point that Ella worries if she's losing it.

What worked: The author does a great job showing the subtlety of a psychopath. Nothing over the top or graphic but enough to give a psychological creep factor to this novel. I like how Ella tries to figure out what is really going on to the point that she questions her own sanity. Readers don't know what to expect either. To be honest, I thought this would be a paranormal thriller but it's much more than that. Suspense, mystery, and even hints of a romance.

Blake is hard to figure out at first but there's little hints woven throughout to let readers know that something's not quite right. He's handsome, charismatic, and uses that charm with Ella and others around him.

There's twists and turns throughout this novel that gives it a Hitchcock appeal. Subtle psychological thriller with a surprising ending twist. Sure to appeal to those who love a good mystery and thriller without all the graphic elements.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 2 0

User reviews

There are no user reviews for this listing.
Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Incredible Animals
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
In this illustrated guide, discover fascinating and unusual information about...
Special Delivery
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A lovely book to share with children in an expecting...
Eyelike Stickers: Trains
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Hundreds of irresistible, reusable, and collectible stickers to mix, match,...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
It is twenty years since the events of La Belle...
Heiress Apparently (Daughters of the Dynasty, #1)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The first book in an epic and romantic YA series...
Winter Light
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
WINTER LIGHT is the story of 15-year-old Mary Donahue...
Talent
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Sandee Mason is convinced her life will change if she...
WITHIN THE FOLDS OF A SWAN'S WINGS
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
What if the one element that has always defined you...
The Good Girls
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
One of Us Is Lying meets Sadie in this twisty,...
Frozen 2: Dangerous Secrets: The Story of Iduna and Agnarr
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Sixteen-year-old Iduna harbors a dark secret. On the surface, she...
All our Hidden Gifts
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Maeve’s strangely astute tarot readings make her the talk of...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Twelve-year-old Cassie needs a horse. She’s determined to move up...
A Higher Version of Me (The Destiny Clark Saga Book 9)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Just when everything seems to be perfect, it all falls...
A Happier Version of Me (The Destiny Clark Saga Book 8)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Two guys. One girl. A big confusing mess. ...
A Healthier Version of Me (The Destiny Clark Saga Book 7)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
She broke his heart. Will he ever forgive her? ...
A Steadier Version of Me (The Destiny Clark Saga Book 6)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
He wants her back, but she’s already taken. ...

Latest Member Reviews

Special Delivery
 
4.0
"SPECIAL DELIVERY is a delightfully silly picture book. A little duck is eagerly awaiting the delivery of her baby brother...."
Minecraft: The Shipwreck
 
5.0
"Jake and his father have moved around quite a bit after the death of his mother. His father is a..."
The Tiny Baker
 
5.0
"THE TINY BAKER is the sweet story of a baker bee who runs a bakery and tea shop. Every day,..."
A Gift for Amma: Market Day in India
 
5.0
"A GIFT FOR AMMA is a delightful and colorful journey through the marketplace in India. A young girl ventures out..."
Five Little Ducks: First Book of Nursery Rhymes
 
5.0
"FIVE LITTLE DUCKS is a delightful collection of nursery rhymes. The book includes many rhymes that are familiar alongside those..."
The Bread Pet: A Sourdough Story
 
4.0
"THE BREAD PET is a cute story about Cora, whose favorite uncle asks her to take care of his sourdough..."
Scruff
 
3.5
"SCRUFF is a cute picture book story of a man who gets a scruffy dog, which suits his scruffy style..."
Making Tracks: City
 
5.0
"MAKING TRACKS: CITY is a fun lift-the-flap board book that features tracks and asks who made them. When children lift..."
Amazing Islands
 
4.5
"'Amazing Islands' by Sabrina Weiss and Kerry Hyndman is a beautifully illustrated book, chock full of valuable information about islands..."
The Walrus and the Caribou
 
4.5
"'The Walrus and the Caribou' by Maika Harper, illustrated by Marcus Cutler, is an endearing tale of creation, based on..."
The Boy, the Wolf, and the Stars
 
5.0
"THE BOY, THE WOLF, AND THE STARS is an enchanting middle grade fantasy. Bo was left in the woods as..."
Friend Me
 
5.0
"Roisin has moved from Dublin, Ireland to the Boston area with her mother and older brother Michael. Her mother works..."
Tiger Wild
 
3.0
"TIGER WILD is a picture book about imaginary friends and getting into trouble. Lily always blames her mistakes on Tiger,..."
Bea by the Sea
 
5.0
"BEA BY THE SEA is a sweet picture book about trying new things and making new friends. Bea loves lions..."
Let's Find the Kitten
 
5.0
"LET'S FIND THE KITTEN is a cute hide-and-seek, lift-the-flap board book. Kitten is hiding, but we don't know where. As..."
Winston Wiggles
 
4.0
"WINSTON WIGGLES is a cute book that gives strategies for helping children to settle down when they have the "wiggles."..."
Sweet Dreams: A Goodnight Lullaby
 
4.0
"SWEET DREAMS: A GOODNIGHT LULLABY is a great bedtime book pick for children who love Sesame Street. Sesame Street is..."
Best Friends, Busy Friends
 
4.0
"BEST FRIENDS, BUSY FRIENDS is a fun, rhyming book that celebrates differences and friendship. This book is a poetic rhyme..."
It's Only One
 
4.0
"IT'S ONLY ONE is a cute picture book that shows the importance of taking personal responsibility for being considerate. Sunnyville..."
Unleashed (Jinx Book 2)
 
4.0
"Lacey wakes up in the hospital after being there about a month. She knows that Jinx is gone, but doesn't..."