Publication date: 2nd June 2011.
My rating: 4.5 stars
Once upon a time there was a girl who was special.
This is not her story.
Unless you count the part where I killed her.
Sixteen-year-old Alison has been sectioned in a mental institute for teens, having murdered the most perfect and popular girl at school. But the case is a mystery: no body has been found, and Alison’s condition is proving difficult to diagnose. Alison herself can’t explain what happened: one minute she was fighting with Tori—the next she disintegrated. Into nothing. But that’s impossible. Right?
Ultraviolet reminded me of one of my all time favourite films Shutter Island. After finishing the book I sat there thinking to myself what has just happened?
In Ultraviolet we are told the story through Alison; she’s found herself in a psych unit after admitting she killed Tori a girl from school. Tori, hasn’t been seen since, but her blood was found at school at the spot where Alison the last person to have seen her had a confrontation with her. Alison’s mum has always believed Alison’s not right, so Pine Hills is the best place for her, whereas everyone else including Alison herself just wants to discover the truth.
Ultraviolet took me a while to warm up to, it had an unusual premise, but once we started to get down to the nitty gritty with Alison, I found myself fallen head first into an unbelieving world, but in no way I wanted to leave.
Ultraviolet was multi-layered and complex, but Anderson was able to produce a masterly woven plot. It had aspects where I assumed I knew what was going to happen, but then was totally flummoxed by what was around the corner. I liked the way Anderson slowly took us into Alison’s life, and opened nooks and crannies that even Alison hadn’t been aware of, how we were pushed deeper into her life and emerged with so many fascinating facts.
Alison was a character who I enjoyed being with, she couldn’t understand what was going on either, whether she really killed Tori, so I liked going through this journey with her, slowly unravelling the mystery surrounding herself and what really happened. It was like she was wearing blinkers her entire life and she couldn’t really see what was really happening. Until that one person came into her life who had that faith in her that she needed to give her the confidence to believe in herself. This one character I’m just a loss for words when describing him, it could probably be best summed up by Alison
“I was terrified of losing..., a soul mate so perfectly made for me that even now I was half afraid I’d invented him”.
And Alison nails it with this quote what Ultraviolet is really about. We are often led to believe so much, but how honestly can we say that it’s true? It’s like me and my best friend can see the same fight but have totally different takes on it afterwards. My sense of reality can be quite different to another’s. In essence Anderson has been able to play on this in an unbelievable way with Ultraviolet.
I went into Ultraviolet with one story, but left with so many more. With Ultraviolet just be prepared for the unexpected.