March 30, 2013

Review: Ultraviolet by R.J. Anderson



Ultraviolet is genre-bending paranormal YA about a 17-year-old girl named Alison whois a synesthete(she hears color, sees sound, etc), a tetrachromat (she can see into the ultraviolet part of the spectrum), and possibly a murderer. Her only hope is a fraud, a liar, and maybe an alien. Or so she says.

add to goodreadsUltraviolet by R.J. Anderson
Publication Date:  September 1, 2011
Publisher:  Orchard Books

Available for Purchase:
Chapter-Indigo | amazon | B&N | TBD | indiebound

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** This title was provided to us by the Publisher for an honest review.
We were in no way paid for our opinions **

Gabby NewAfter reading the seriously awesome description on Goodreads about a year ago, I remember always wanting to read Ultraviolet by author R.J. Anderson. It sounded scary, thrilling and creepy, but also like something in the plot would take me by surprise. Needless to say, by the time I finally got around to reading the opening chapter of the novel I was hooked and didn’t want to stop reading until I found out just what is really going on in main character Alison’s life. By the time I finished reading, I was dying to read the sequel Quicksilver (but that’s another review for another day).

Ultraviolet takes place right after Alison finds herself admit to a mental institution. With a killer intro explaining how Alison must have killed a girl named Tori by making her disappear just by touching her, everybody around Alison believes that she is mentally unstable including herself. Her mother has been afraid of her since she was a kid, her doctor thinks that there is something wrong deep within Alison’s mind and Alison herself knows that it’s impossible for her to have caused Tori to disintegrate with a single touch. The moment is blurry in Alison’s mind, but slowly she begins to remember the night that Tori went missing and the truth of the matter: That she killed her somehow. Just when Alison begins to lose hope in ever being released she meets Dr. Faraday who helps her cope with her strange ability to see colors everywhere and gives her a friend just when she needs one most. Then just as everything seems to be settling down Alison experiences the impossible.

I’ll admit that I’ve never read a novel with a major plot twist quite like the one found in Ultraviolet. All the hinting in the writing and descriptions never really had me thinking that there would be secrets quite like the ones that are revealed in Ultraviolet. Where I expected the supernatural I found science (whaaat?) and where I expected a twist that involved the paranormal I found science fiction (Whaaat? x2). This is definitely the type of novel that I don’t think any readers will be able to predict the twist at the plot’s conclusion. I know that I didn’t and I wouldn’t want to have it any other way. When reading Ultraviolet keeping your eyes open and taking in every detail is very important because if you miss one moment you’ll have missed everything.

There’s a variety of genres in the novel but I think that a lot of people will like the suspense portion. The mystery and suspense in the novel is definitely what kept me around because I never really knew what was going to happen to Alison, but I also had my mind reeling about whether Alison did or did not disintegrate Tori. On topic of there being a ton of genres in the novel there is also some romance however it isn’t fully seen until the end. The romance is built up until the final moments of the novel where Alison and this love interest see that their time together is going to be cut short and have a few quick moments of romance until finally they are separated. Totally left me sad-faced and wishing that things could have worked out differently.

Alison goes through a lot in the novel and apart from all the twists and emotions that get stirred by certain scenes, there is a wide cast of characters in the novel that I really enjoyed. There is Alison who is one of the few characters, in general, that I can actually feel genuine sympathy for. There’s also the doctors in the mental institution who all make the experience realistic and the other patients who all have their own quirks and memorable moments that leave them on your mind long after the novel’s done.

I’d recommend Ultraviolet to fans of thrillers, readers who are looking for a sci-fi novel that isn’t in-your-face and those of you who are just looking for a novel that you will fall for almost instantly.

About the Author:


R.J. (Rebecca) Anderson was born in Uganda, raised in Ontario, went to school in New Jersey, and has spent much of her life dreaming (and writing) of other worlds entirely.

Connect with the Author:  Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


  1. I’ve seen this at my library, and didn’t give it a second glance. I think I made a mistake by doing that, it sounds aaaamazing. Great review.

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever

  2. Brooke

    I liked this one better than the first one for sure. I liked Tory’s voice better than Alison’s. Awesome review!

  3. Chapter by Chapter

    Thanks for stopping by Brooke!

  4. Alise

    I just read my first YA thriller a few days ago and loved it! This one sounds great, thanks for your review and for stopping by my blog!

  5. I really like the sound of this one! I’m big on suspense in a novel so I think I’d enjoy that portion.

    I am intrigued by the plot twist! I’ll definitely have to grab a copy.

    A wonderful review! :-)

  6. Chapter by Chapter

    I hope you get to read a copy soon! I’m curious to see what you’d think of it :) Thanks for stopping by Sharon!

  7. Emily

    Ooh, this sound so… different. I will need to pick it up soon! A book lover needs something refreshing every once in a while, right? :)

    Emily @ Counting in Bookcases

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