OMG, these books just keep getting better and better! This book/episode has the first “original yearbook senior” death of the series. So sad… Who isn’t going to survive this book/episode… read on to find out!
Fear Street Seniors posts are a little different than other Fear Street reviews. In the past I have been great about not giving away spoilers, but with this series being about a small group of characters and their trials and triumphs (not to mention who gets offed next) I kind of think that I should retire that way of doing things, at least for this series. So here we go, but reader beware, spoilers are here. 😛
“Fear Street Seniors #4 – No Answer”
Fear Street Scale: 5 out of 5 Fears
Clarissa Turner is not crazy… her dead sister, Justine, really did contact her through a psychic hotline. But that’s not all, Justine has a message for Clarissa – her death was not an accident, it was murder! Now Clarissa realizes that another Shadyside High senior is about to die. And it might just be her!
Will the seniors die one-by-one – until there is nobody left to graduate?
Clarissa Turner has been at the local “funny farm” ever since her sister died two months before. It was a horrible accident (um yeah, sure). Justine had been talking on the cordless phone and “tripped”, falling down the stairs and breaking her neck. Clarissa found her body… Now, Clarissa is out and is trying to get back to “normal” or her new normal of no longer having her best friend and older sister around. Because she’s gone forever.
Clarissa visits Justine’s grave and then she and her parents have an uncomfortable dinner. Turns out that before Justine died they family was planning to adopt a little boy named Aaron, and that’s still happening. He’ll be there in a few days. At first Clarissa is upset because it’s “too soon” but then she realizes he needs a home and gets over it. Aaron watched his parents die. They were murdered by being forced into a river and drowning. So now he can’t go near water – he freaks out. I get it. Clarissa moves into Justine’s old room so Aaron can take hers… and that’s when it all begins.
On Clarissa’s first day back she’s worried that everyone will be weird around her and think she’s “nuts”. They probably do, teenagers suck. But everything seems fine and her best friends, Debra Lake and Mira Block are at her side. Debra seems like a good friend, sensitive and reliable and Mira seems like a “fun” friend that Clarissa has outgrown but there is history there. Debra and Mira hate each other. It’s fun. Clarissa’s boyfriend, Will Reynolds, is also happy to have her back. Well, yippee.
That night, Clarissa is going through Justine’s desk when Justine’s ghost appears. She seems to be desperately looking for something. Clarissa finds the notebook Justine is looking for and the ghost nods, but then Debra and Mira arrive and Justine vanishes. Debra and Mira talk with Clarissa who shows them the notebook and she finds a number to a psychic hotline with a note in Justine’s handwriting to call back the day after Justine died. Clarissa decides to make the call, and puts it on speakerphone. Who should answer, but Justine herself! Justine tells Clarissa she doesn’t have much energy but before she goes she says she was murdered! Someone pushed her down the stairs, but she didn’t see who. Justine is gone and the psychic, Renata, comes back on. Justine was speaking through her. Fun. Debra tells Clarissa to hang up and the woman is just scamming her (it is a 900 number after all) but Renata tells Clarissa things to prove that she’s legit. She tells Clarissa to call back the next night and to make sure her friends are with her for their “extra energy”.
The next day, all Clarissa can think about is her dead sister and that crazy psychic but she has to wait until that evening to call. She goes out with Will and ends up telling him about Justine and the psychic hotline. Um, why? You just got out of the nuthouse and now you want to start talking ghosts and psychics and murder? Are you trying to get locked up again? Of course, he doesn’t believe and they fight and oh well. When it comes time to call the psychic, Clarissa, Mira and Debra are all ready. The call is short and basically Justine/Renata warns them that Justine’s killer is not finished yet, and one of them will be next! Oh no! Gasp! I hope it’s Mira, even though I am pretty sure it’s not (I’ll tell you why later).
They’re all freaked out and Debra and Mira leave. Clarissa explores Justine’s room some more and finds a loose floorboard in the back of the closet. Underneath is a fake ID Justine used, a knife in a leather sheath and Justine’s diary. Clarissa reads the diary and realizes she didn’t know her sister at all. Justine was rebelling, hated school and wanted to runaway to be a singer. She was also cheating on her boyfriend with a new guy she nicknamed Slash. (She gave everyone awful nicknames: Hammerhead, Glamour Girl, Moon Girl etc.) Slash sounds like an absolutely psycho. He pushed Justine once and when Justine broke things off with him he sent her a dead bird and seriously stalked her ass. Hmm… you may have found your killer, girl. Oh and get this, the knife – that was gift from Slash as a token of “his protection”. Ugh. I mean I have had horrible taste in guys when I was younger, but even my old self at its dumbest would have been like, “You gave me a knife as a gift. Later, loser!” I’m just saying.
Will climbs the trellis outside and comes in through the window. CREEPY! He apologizes for acting like a jerk about the whole psychic thing and Clarissa shows him the diary. Um, mistake. Is it just me, or does anyone else think that Will is Slash? For one thing, he was way too familiar climbing in through Justine’s/Clarissa’s window. For another that is such a Stine thing to do. Anyway they fight about the whole dead Justine/psychic thing again and Will takes off.
Clarissa decides to go to a club in the next city to look for Slash. Somehow she manages to wrestle up fake IDs for Debra and Mira in just a few hours. At the club Clarissa has a scare with some guy who obviously thinks she wants to buy some drugs. Clarissa is just freaked out because he has dagger eyebrow rings (weird) so he might be Slash. Girl, it ain’t gonna be that easy.
The next day, Aaron comes to the Turner house. Clarissa shows him his room and then hers. He is amazed by everything she has, and when he picks up the phone, he channels Justine. “Too late… another murder… too late.” Oh no! Please don’t be Debra, even though I’m sure it is! Aaron collapses and Clarissa’s parents come in and decide to take him into the kitchen. He has low blood sugar. As soon as they’re gone, Clarissa calls Debra (take that, Mira!). Thankfully, she answers. (Phew.) Clarissa tells Debra everything and then Debra starts to tell Clarissa something she found out. Debra spoke with Justine’s ex-boyfriend and found out who Slash is! But then there is a thud noise (NO! NO! NO!) and Debra goes to investigate, still holding the phone. Debra screams and tells someone to get away from her, before there is a loud noise and the line goes… dead.
Clarissa rushes over to Debra’s and lets herself in with the spare key. She finds Debra dead at the bottom of the stairs – just like Justine. The cordless phone however is in its cradle…
At the police station, the detective on the case tells Clarissa that Debra’s death was an accident and she is just being crazy because Debra’s death is so similar to Justine’s. Um, they are exactly the same down to who discovered both bodies, you dumbass. He acts like a complete asshole to Clarissa and talks about her stay at the “special clinic” and how she shouldn’t tell other people about the whole psychic-talking-with-her-dead-sister thing. And why would she need to, he tells her parents anyway. Ugh. I thought the killer was being stupid and lazy by killing Debra the EXACT same way he/she killed Justine. But apparently, Shadyside police are so stupid that any actual effort just wasn’t necessary. MORONS.
When Clarissa gets home she calls Justine’s ex and he tells her that her boyfriend, Will Reynolds, is the same guy Justine dumped him for! Girl, your man is SLASH! (Also, told ya! 😛 ) Clarissa calls Mira and Mira is all like, “I don’t believe it.” See, Mira has been friends with Will for way longer than Clarissa, or even Justine, knew him. So they trade emails and such. Mira says she’ll check to see if Will has an alibi for Debra’s murder. (For the record, he will, because he didn’t kill her. I know who did!) Clarissa lays down, but the phone rings waking her up. She hears nothing but static and then a loud voice says CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW, but of course before Clarissa can reply, someone shoves her down the stairs and she breaks her neck, just like her sister… oh please, you know it was a dream!
But when Clarissa does wake up she finds Will standing over her. DANGER! DANGER! Clarissa is dumb and tells him everything she knows and then accuses him of murder. (There goes any element of surprise or leverage.) He gets all defensive in an awful kind of way and tells her to go back to the clinic where she belongs. She breaks up with him and kicks his ass out. Her parents overhear the commotion and come into the room. Will is already gone but they demand to know what is going on and Clarissa actually tells them everything. Ugh. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. Of course, because the whole psychic thing is out, Clarissa has earned herself an appointment with her doctor at the funny farm. Oh, and they take the phone away. Clarissa freaks, but her father tells her that making calls on the phone is impossible. They disconnected service right after Justine’s death. (Gasp!)
Clarissa ditches school the next day and meets Mira. They call Renata from a payphone but Renata can’t sense anything. She tells Clarissa that Justine must have “bonded” with the other phone and they have to call her on that. Mira stays the night and the girls search for the phone after everyone is asleep. But by the time they find it, it’s too late and Renata doesn’t answer. That night Will tries to come in through the window again… seriously wtf is wrong with this guy? Does he not learn? Clarissa and Mira freak out and battle him from coming inside. He finally loses his grip and falls and even though he was breaking and entering and both Mira and Clarissa were fighting him, it’s all Clarissa’s fault. Back to the clinic for her.
Her doctor, being one more asshole, makes her call Will and apologize to him and basically admit she was wrong and crazy. Does no one think a teenage guy breaking into a teenage girl’s house, her bedroom no less, is kind of messed up? WTF. Will accepts her apology and warns her about (this is what I have been hinting about since I first mentioned Debra and Mira, seriously scroll up) Mira. He thinks Clarissa might be right, but he didn’t kill anyone. He thinks Mira did, because she’s always wanted him for his bod. Ugh. As upsetting as this news is, when hunting for a killer who also wants to kill you, you really should keep an open mind. Instead, Clarissa just goes berserk and says she will never believe him… right in front of her doctor. Fabulous.
Clarissa’s parents, Aaron and Mira come to visit. After her parents leave, a phone in Mira’s bag rings and Aaron rushes to answer it. Clarissa realizes it’s Justine’s phone! Once again, Aaron channels Justine and says, “Believe it.” But Clarissa being stupid has no idea what she is supposed to believe. UGH. Mira is watching Aaron while her parents go shopping. Clarissa tries to put everything together and then seems to get it. FINALLY! Mira said she had the phone so Clarissa’s parents wouldn’t take it away again, but what if she actually wanted to get rid of it. No phone… no connection to Justine. Well except for Aaron who has channeled her more than once. Then Mira might be compelled to get rid of the kid too!
Clarissa finally finds her spine and breaks out of the funny farm. She goes to her house but no one is there. Then she goes to Mira’s. Mira’s mother said that Mira was going to rent a boat on Fear Lake with Aaron. But remember… Aaron won’t go near water! Clarissa races to the lake and sees Aaron and Mira in a boat out in the middle of it. It looks like Mira is rocking the boat and laughing. Aaron is terrified. Clarissa swims to the boat (why not?) and Mira does the cliché villain thing of confessing everything. She killed Justine so Will would notice her. She killed Debra because she once told Debra she kind of liked Will and thought Debra would put it all together. She didn’t plan on killing Clarissa because everyone thought she was psycho. Mira then throws the phone off the boat, followed by Aaron who can’t swim.
Clarissa tries to rescue Aaron but he is too heavy and she is out of strength. But somehow he makes it to shore anyway. Clarissa finally becomes admirable by knocking Mira out of the damn boat and then climbing in herself. Huzzah! She rushes to shore with Mira trailing her. At the shore Clarissa’s parents, her doctor and a bunch of cops are there. Aaron is dead and Mira takes the opportunity to cry about how Clarissa tried to kill them both. Oh no! But then Justine’s phone washes ashore and at the exact same time, Aaron coughs up some water and comes to. He tells everyone what really happened. Buh bye, Mira!
A week later, everything is normal again. Will and Clarissa have made up and Mira is at some mental hospital getting “help”. I really wish they had just killed her off. I mean that’s one more senior to add to the body count, plus I really, really hate her.
This book was some old-school Fear Street, which was really nice to see. Seriously, I could have read this book outside the Seniors miniseries and it would have worked. I’m sad Debra is dead, but now we have our first official senior death that has been in the yearbook since the very beginning (not to mention our first student-who-turns-out-to-be-psycho, since Shadyside High has never been in short supply of those). I wonder who is going to die next…