Aug 28, 2013
Ever since the car accident that killed his twin brother, Marshall Windsor has been consumed with guilt and crippled by secrets of that fateful night. He has only one chance to make amends, to right his wrongs and set things right. He must find a Thin Space—a mythical point where the barrier between this world and the next is thin enough for a person to step through to the other side.
But, when a new girl moves into the house next door, the same house Marsh is sure holds a thin space, she may be the key—or the unraveling of all his secrets.
As they get closer to finding a thin space—and closer to each other—Marsh must decide once and for all how far he’s willing to go to right the wrongs of the living… and the dead.
Being a sibling is hard. Always having another person to compare one’s accomplishes and life experience to, always having the share the affections of one’s parents. But as hard as being a sibling is, being a twin is infinitely harder. Marshall Windsor – Marsh for short – has had to share his whole life with his twin brother. From friends, sports, dating, constantly getting confused with one another… Marsh and Austin went through life together. Until one moment rips them apart, and leaves a teenage boy to deal with injuries, trauma, sccarring… and the loss of the only other person in the world who could truly understand him.
In the months that follow his brother’s passing, Marsh’s grief and loss lead to his obsession with finding a Thin Space – a mythical area where the worlds of the living and dead (or more correctly, those in purgatory) are thinner. A Thin Space could reunite Marsh with his brother. It could change everything. A Thin Space could fix everything since that fateful night months ago. And when Marsh’s neighbour – who was so convinced of the existence of Thin Spaces – passes away in the spot where her soul had entered her body (a requirement in the creation of a Thin Space), Marsh makes it his goal to get into this house and find the Thin Space.
But the new neighbours make Marsh’s mission so much harder. He bonds with Maddie, who has demons of her own. Her brother Sam has made it his personal goal to keep Marsh as far away from his sister as he can. And reality doesn’t stop for Marsh, despite his honourable mission. His family life is in ruins. Everyone thinks he has officially lost his mind. But little does he know, that his search for the Thin Space will unravel much more than he expected it would… about himself… about his brother… and about the truth that he has been denying to himself for so long.
Thin Space is Jody Casella’s first venture into YA storytelling, and she definitely did not disappoint. It is pretty hard to find a good male POV story nowadays, and this one was special on its own just for that. Marsh is the definition of an unreliable narrator. His point of view left me confused for such a large part of the book. Things just didn’t add up. But then they did. And I loved it so much. I have always been interested in the relationship between twins, and I think that Casella did a great job with her approach to the topic. Marsh and Austin’s relationship was very realistic and I do understand some of the aspects of having a love/hate (mostly love) relationship with a sibling. I sympathized so much with Marsh and to see his growth and acceptance as the story went on was very refreshing, though a bit painful, to read about. I liked Maddie well enough. Her relationship with Marsh was quite realistic and well-developed. They are two broken people who, maybe one day, will be able to help fix each other. And it’s good.
My problem came with Marsh’s peers at the high school and their treatment of a boy who has basically just lost his other half. I’ve seen the treatment that high school students give to someone who has experienced a loss – slow, unsure, wanting to be supportive but not knowing how. And Marsh’s classmates were just brutal to him. They picked fights with him and when they weren’t doing that, they were blatantly ignoring him. That wasn’t something I would ever want anyone to experience. It’s not something anyone should experience. It came off unrealistic.
Otherwise, this is a very solid debut release by Jody Casella. The concept of a Thin Space in itself is so original and creative, and her writing shines with every page and every discovery we make about Marsh and Austin. The direction that Casella chooses to go in is definitely hinted throughout the story if one really looks hard enough, but I liked being surprised. It was a good ending. It was the ending that Marsh needed and it was the ending that Thin Space needed.
Jody Casella has written a beautiful story about the bond between brothers and how loss affects a boy. A twin boy. How one moment can change everything that follows. And for these reasons (and so many more), I wholeheartedly recommend Thin Space to readers of YA, contemporary and a dash of paranormal and romance.