I did not expect to like this book at all, as I am not a fan of creature books. Fortunately, the whole creature thing in this story doesn't really come front and center until we're well into things. I appreciated getting to know the characters before all the weird stuff started happening. And when you read a line like "she stood there with a cup of coffee as big as her head," you know the wit is going to entertain you.
This brings me to the plot, which is essentially a murder mystery. It's done so well with the whole banshee idea that I have to marvel at its innovation. It surprised me; I really had no idea if it was Colonel Mustard in the kitchen with the knife or exactly what - until the real murderer was revealed.
I loved the way Vincent was able to address some other issues as well. Having the main character as a teenager who was essentially abandoned by her father makes her relatable to many kids. She didn't pull any punches with these characters either. The reasons for the abandonment may have initially been good, but Vincent isn't afraid to tackle the way a situation like that is always infinitely more complicated than it seems.
The characters were fun. Kaylee was so normal, very funny. Nash was a peach; doesn't everyone want a boyfriend like him? There were some stock characters - Emma as the best friend, Sophie as the annoying brat. Tod was delightful. And the two dads were just nice guys put into difficult situations.
As to the romance: I wouldn't classify this as absolute insta-love. Close, but It didn't bother me overmuch. What did bother me just a tiny bit was the contradiction - Kaylee can't believe Nash likes her and is intimidated. And yet she has no problem calling him up for help and being forward with him. I felt like their physical relationship especially was like gratuitous sex in a movie. It got hot really quickly without needing to, and there was virtually no buildup.
Lastly, I have to say that Amanda Ronconi is right up there with Jenna Lamia as one of the best narrators I've heard on audio. She gave such great life to Kaylee and Nash, and especially Tod, Harmony, and Aunt Val.
I'll be reading the rest of this series. The whole story reminded me of the tv series "Dead Like Me" in its deadpan humor (pun intended). I'll be interested to see where Vincent takes it as I continue on.