Bad Girls Don't Die, by Katie Alender
Alexis isn't a fan of much other than photography. At school, she's pretty content being an outcast—some might say she revels in it a bit. She hangs out with the Doom Squad (her secret name for the Goth kids), but she hasn't had a best friend since eighth grade, when harassment from the jerk cheerleaders drove Beth Goldberg across multiple state lines to Florida.
Her mother is constantly working, her father isn't there even when he is, and her thirteen-year-old sister is obsessed with dolls. Life isn't great, but it is what it is. And, hey: How many fifteen-year-olds have their own darkroom in the house?
But then things start getting weird. While photographing her house late one night, Alexis sees a weird glowing ball outside. She tells herself it was a swarm of fireflies.
Then Kasey, her sister, starts acting... different. Alexis tries to tell herself that Kasey's just going through a phase—that she's just suffering from massive moodiness—but deep down she's well aware that most normal mood swings, no matter how drastic, don't involve blackouts and a change in eye color.
Yay for spooky ghost stories and yay for Bad Girls Don't Die. I really liked this one. I even read it in the car.
Although I liked it a whole lot, it should certainly be mentioned that I had a running commentary about my issues going in the back of my brain, but I mostly just ignored it because I was enjoying myself so much. My SPOILER-Y COMMENTARY focused mainly on my issues with Alexis' denial (I understood it to a point, but only to a point—after that, COME ON—and also as the ghost had approached her as well, I'd think that she'd be more likely to figure it all out a bit sooner) and her eagerness to fall for what was very obviously a red herring (didn't she think that the story that just Came To Her might possibly be important?) and the Cheerleader with a Heart of Gold Who is Also Psychic and Omigod Actually Personally Involved in the Mystery storyline was a little much for me END SPOILER-Y COMMENTARY.
Again, despite the issues, way fun. Genuinely creepy, with likable characters, a snarky-but-not-too-snarky narrator (Alexis describes her house's "intricately-carved" foyer as looking like "a fairy tale had exploded all over the walls"), a decent amount of action and a believable romance. Recommended if you'd like something along those lines and aren't in a nitpicky mood. I'll be keeping an eye out for the author's next book.