The Sham is about a young British girl, Emily, who befriends a boy, Jack, who is brand new to the town and “feels everyone elses feelings.” From the same day that Jack arrives in The Sham until the end of their school year, a group of four girls is slowly disappearing and Jack is accused of being behind it. Emily develops feelings for Jack and tries to prove his innocence as well as her own for the remainder of the book.
Alongside trying to prove Jack’s innocence, Emily must also try to deal with Jack’s constant paranoia and being followed by people who think he is a boy who has been institutionalized.
This book was very well developed and thought out, but it was not for me. There were many uses of British slang that I had to look up while reading, as well as many instances where the author loses time. I felt like everything in the story happened in a matter of days, possibly even weeks, but actually is over a span of six months. For a shorter story, this is fitting, I was just lost at the points where time is discussed. Personally, the aspect of the story concerning Jack’s mistake identity annoyed me. I understand that it makes Jack more likely to be the murderer and how it aids to the story, but I thought that it added a little too much to follow. The story is already difficult to follow with the time chunks missing and how quickly the story develops, but the added identity mystery doesn’t do much to help, although it did hold my attention a little longer.
If you like mystery and plot twists, this book is for you. I can usually figure out plots in stories such as this one, but this one had me actually thrown. Overall, it was a quick, good read.