by Rachel Ward
Jem has always been special. Not that "Awww! Isn't she CUTE!" special. (She'd just as soon bite your hand if you tried to pinch her cheek.) But rather in that she-can-see-your-date-of-death-special.
One look in your eyes and Jem knows when you're going to die.
It's a burden she's had as long as she can remember. The first time she understood what all the numbers meant was when she was six and her mother OD'd on 10102001.
Her foster mother, Karen, will go on 07142013. Her teacher, Mr. McNulty will be torturing students for a good long time, dying 12252023. But her new friend, Spider, is running out of time. December 15, 2010 and he's gone for good.
Seeing all the numbers and knowing what they mean, makes Jem hard. She doesn't like to get close to people. Getting close means knowing too much and being unable to tell. Because people don't want to know. They may say they want to know, but they really don't.
All this is bad enough. But when she and Spider skip school one day with some extra cash he got from a "job", things really get awful. They travel around London, looking for something to do, when they stop by the London Eye. And there, Jem notices that everyone around her has the same date of death. 12082010. Today.
She and Spider escape just before the explosion that kills all those people and now they are "wanted for questioning".
Time is running out for her, and especially for Spider. With just one week left for him, the cops chasing them, and no place that's safe, can Jem ever figure out how to stop the numbers from coming true?
Final thoughts: It's set in England, so there's a little getting used to the language that needs to be done, but overall it's a solid book. There are a few sections that drag along and the book description provided on the jacket is a little off.