In The Middle by S.J. Henderson

In the middle


I had the pleasure of reading the ARC for this book by S. J. Henderson. In one night, I had completed the book and next morning I had told myself, I going to buy me a copy when she publishes it.

Now that it is available on Amazon, I have bought my copy and re-read it, again, within a single night.

I have read many young adult books paranormal/supernatural elements (Yes, I am not ashamed of my mind range of 3-60 years stuck in the body of a 34-year-old woman, I read everything I want to. Don’t judge me.) The heroine of this book is not a fairy-tale princess waiting for love, or a shoe. In the Middle highlights on the issue of diversity in a different way, with a scarred and battered female lead. No wall flower or picture perfect babe here. Lucy or Lucille (she hates that name, poor dear), was once an average teenager, attractive and well-loved by friends and family. One night of an unexpected and very much unwanted event changed her life.


Spoiler ahead.

The author hooks the reader’s attention right from the introduction of the protagonist surviving a near fatal accident. No beating around the bush with Ms. Henderson. By the end of the first chapter, the reader will know something isn’t quite right, not ‘normal.’

A fast paced read, this book shows Ms. Henderson’s unique sense of humor with a touch of sarcasm even in the most difficult of the situations.

A favorite (excerpt from Lucy’s thoughts when she meets Oliver, the attractive stranger with dimples.)

Now that I’ve been reconstructed and reanimated like Dr. Frankenstein’s monster, I feel nothing at all.

I laughed loud enough to wake up half of my sleeping family when I read the comparison of Aunt Perdita’s fake smile with Lucy’s face after eating a bowl of her mom’s chilly. Did I mention, I read the book, twice, at night?

Okay, now back to the story. The paranormal is unleashed upon us pretty soon, as one by one, people start disappearing from Mitte, Lucy’s current abode.

By the way, ‘party pooper’ Aunt Perdita’s house, where Lucy stays, is a castle with little food. Poor Lucy loses the grandmotherly cook Mille, almost immediately (though not before a good meal, yay!)

Read somewhere, the name Perdita means lost. Her sad story made me reach for my baby, just to remind myself, I have one.

Anyway, people disappear usually in Lucy’s presence, and to her dismay, the initially hostile citizens of Mitte warm up to her. The scenes of the orphanage, the tragic and gruesome past of Aunt Perdita, Doc Blevins, and Oliver, especially the bit about Oliver’s secret knowledge of Lucy, all the bits, and pieces of suspense fit into one great jigsaw puzzle once we understand Lucy’s role in Mitte.

Little things make up a memorable tale of regrets, and consequences, raising a sense of nagging self-awareness at the end. By not preaching her philosophy, the author has a way of making you think about your actions and their effects on after-life.

A fast paced novel with a mysterious air of the paranormal, this book is more than a romantic account of a girl-meet-boy. The way this young girl survived such a tragedy and lived on, it’s fascinating; even if it was all inside her head.

I offer four bohostars to In the Middle.

I recommend In The Middle for all ages. This is no Hunger Games or Twilight but a sweet, sad, and ultimately feel good story of a simple girl with an extraordinary purpose of life.

If you have kids or like middle-grade stories, check out my reviews on Ms. Henderson’s mindblowing kid’s books Daniel The Draw-er and Daniel The Camp-er.

In The Middle Book Cover

In The Middle

S.J. Henderson

Young-adult Paranormal Romance

Tiny Fox Press

December 31st 2016



Girl moves to new town.
Girl meets Mr. Tall, Dark, and Handsome.
Cue Happily Ever After.
That’s how the story goes, right?

Except this is Lucy. The same Lucy whose stellar driving skills single-handedly wiped out both of her parents, leaving her with nothing but the suitcase in her hand and the screws in her skull. Not to mention that Mr. Tall, Dark, and Handsome—AKA Oliver—is just as annoyingly bossy as he is hot. According to Oliver, Lucy’s not safe in her new hometown, but he refuses to say why. He just gives her some lame warning about not going out after dark, like that’ll stop her.

When several townspeople vanish, the lethargic community springs to life, fearful of the danger lurking among them. The problem is that Lucy’s the last person to have seen any of the missing. Doesn’t exactly qualify her for the Neighbor of the Year Award.

Lucy’s already given up on Happily Ever After, but now she has two choices left: find out what’s happening in her new home, or become the next victim.

So what say you?