Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Ultraviolet (Ultraviolet, #1)” as Want to Read:
Ultraviolet (Ultraviolet, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Ultraviolet (Ultraviolet #1)

by
3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  5,843 ratings  ·  1,230 reviews
Once upon a time there was a girl who was special.
This is not her story.
Unless you count the part where I killed her.

Sixteen-year-old Alison has been sectioned in a mental institute for teens, having murdered the most perfect and popular girl at school. But the case is a mystery: no body has been found, and Alison's condition is proving difficult to diagnose. Alison hersel...more
Paperback, 410 pages
Published June 2nd 2011 by Orchard (first published June 1st 2011)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Ultraviolet, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Ultraviolet

Entwined by Heather DixonWither by Lauren DeStefanoUnearthly by Cynthia HandAcross the Universe by Beth RevisDarkest Mercy by Melissa Marr
Beautiful Book Covers of 2011
73rd out of 638 books — 4,246 voters
City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra ClareClockwork Prince by Cassandra ClareForever by Maggie StiefvaterSilence by Becca FitzpatrickDivergent by Veronica Roth
YA Novels of 2011
151st out of 1,276 books — 6,801 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Wendy Darling
Oh! This is so cool.That was my reaction late last night when I finished this book and the feeling hasn't worn off. Ultraviolet is one of those sneaky books that makes you think you're reading one thing and then all the sudden, whoosh, you're off on a different adventure. I think many of us who spend a lot of time in the paranormal genre have come to expect a certain story structure from these types of books, but this one has no problem bending all the rules and leaping out to explore other dime...more
karen
tommy has been telling me about A Mango-Shaped Space for a long time now, and after reading this, i both want to read that book and also to have synesthesia myself, please. it's like having a superpower that doesn't require you, morally, to go out and save the world. it is more like being on a mild acid trip all the time, without any of the accompanying backaches and food-aversion.

of course, in this book, her synesthesia is compounded with other special gifts which both complicate her life and a...more
R.j.
Mar 25, 2011 R.j. added it  ·  (Review from the author)
I've written a lot of stories, but ULTRAVIOLET is one of the very closest to my heart. It was also one of the hardest and most demanding things I've ever written, but thanks to the help of numerous smart critique partners, a tirelessly supportive agent and two wonderful editors, I can look at it now and say, "Yes. There it is. THAT is what I meant." I love this book very much, and I hope you will too.
Emily May
3 1/2 stars

I know a whole bunch of my GR friends have heard me say this before but I'm going to say it again for the benefit of any newcomers who stumble across this review: because rating a book can be a tricky process and three stars can mean anything from "I was totally unmoved by it" to "it was pretty good for the most part", I tend to take the GR system literally. By this I mean that three stars is "I liked it" and is a mostly positive rating. Therefore, Ultraviolet hovers somewhere halfway...more
Flannery
Jun 15, 2011 Flannery rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Wha-wha-wha-whaaaa?
Recommended to Flannery by: Wendy Darling
Ultraviolet is a genre-bender, there’s no doubt about it, and I don’t think I’ve been this surprised about the direction a book took in quite some time. What I find particularly intriguing is the fact that all of us who’ve read it seem equally stumped as to how to write a review of a book whilst still leaving out half of the plot so as to preserve the experience for other readers--talk about a mighty task. When I originally wrote a placeholder for this review, it basically just said that I wish...more
Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
I'm always a little hesitant to review the books I loved. It seems like nothing I write can ever be good enough. That's exactly the case this time. I'll try to keep it short and very clear: this book blew me away!
It took only about 30 pages for me to fall in love with Ultraviolet. If I remember correctly, I called Anderson's writing unpretentious and rich with emotion when I just started reading, and I stand by my words now that I've finished. What amazed me the most about it was the way she oc...more
Sam
4.5 stars

“I’d killed Tori Beaugrand. Torn her into a billion pieces, disintegrated her, with nothing but the power of my mind.”

It’s been quite some time since I’ve been so genuinely shocked by a book before.

Ultraviolet is, for the most part, a brilliantly written story from the unique perspective of a girl sectioned in a mental institute for teens. It is also, near the end, something completely different - though no less brilliant. Come the last part of the story and R.J. Anderson doesn’t hesit...more
Blythe
This book and I are eloping. It's settled and there's nothing you can do to stop it. No, seriously. We've planned the eloping and everything. Go find another book to elope with. Ultraviolet is mine. Forever and ever. But not in a creepy way, or anything like that... *awkward laugh*

It's been three days still I finished Ultraviolet, and I still cannot think coherently. Honestly, it's a miracle I can form full sentences at this point. If my incoherency, eloping, or rating weren't a clear indication...more
Elle

In the interest of staying fair to R.J.Anderson I will make it clear that Ultraviolet is a five star book.

Or, at least the first 230ish pages are from a five star book and the remaining few chapters belong in WTF Capital City. But more on that later.

Initially, be prepared to be sucked in to the weaving vortex that is Ultraviolet. From the get go we are presented with a puzzle the likes of which I have not experienced in a long time.

There's nothing worse than when a mystery isn't, you know, mys...more
Steph Sinclair

Ultraviolet was such a pleasant surprise! I've been thinking about this review for a few days because it's hard to say something about it without giving too much away. It's one of those books that you just have to go in knowing absolutely nothing. So, I will try my best to keep this short and sweet. :)

Ultraviolet is about a girl named Alison who ends up in a mental institute after she has a psychotic break, during which she confesses to murdering a fellow classmate. What makes this book so cool...more
AH
Awesome!

Ultraviolet is so incredibly original. It was an absolute pleasure to read. The writing is well crafted, elegant, colorful, and beautifully descriptive. It has a captivating quality and I was hooked right from the start.

Ultraviolet is the story of a very special teenage girl. Alison finds herself in a psychiatric hospital ward. She believes that she caused a classmate to disintegrate. When the classmate goes missing, Alison confesses to the murder even though no body has been found.

Al...more
Jim
***I have tried to avoid spoilers. If you have read the book, you know how difficult that can be in this case. If you haven’t, you might be well advised to just check it out first, and come back to the reviews later... I REALLY liked it, and will try to walk the tightrope of discussing it without giving it away..
///////

There is a key moment very early in this book - a flashback to Alison at age 6. She is watching her mom washing dishes, and seeing a trail of gold stars when the cutlery clinks. T...more
Crowinator
I love me an unreliable narrator, particularly when you can’t identify what kind of unreliable he or she is. Is he sincere in his beliefs but crazy? Is she a pathological liar? Is he a con man intentionally deceiving his audience? Is she just out of the loop, a narrator who thinks she knows what’s going on but is actually being tricked by others? I stayed up until almost midnight to finish this in a marathon reading session, and I found it an incredibly addictive genre-bender.

Alison is set up as...more
Catie
Jun 11, 2011 Catie rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Catie by: Wendy Darling
3 1/2 stars

Raise your hand if you’ve ever read a passage like this in a young adult novel:

”Comet trails of indigo and violet streaked through my inner vision, and electricity sparked all over my skin. Our breaths mingled, quick and shallow, while my lips melted open and the blood pounded through me in a pleasure so intense it was only a shade away from pain.”

Now raise your hand if you’ve ever given yourself eye strain from frequent eye rolling at passages like that. Guess who has two hands raise...more
Reynje
I have fallen a little in love with this book, and honestly, I could not be more surprised.

I picked up and put down Ultraviolet countless times (mostly because I have a Bowerbird-esque tendency to be drawn to shiny, coloured things), convinced that I had no intention of looking beyond the metallic cover and actually reading it. But after coming across positive review after positive review, on a whim (*cough* book buying frenzy *cough*) I bought it.

Much has been made of the need to approach Ultra...more
Lucy
Sixteen, almost seventeen, year old Alison wakes up in a psych ward after a mental breakdown during which she claimed over and over again she killed one of the most popular girls in her high school. From page one, Alison attempts to convince herself that her break with reality was a temporary thing, even though she grew up believing she might be insane. Alison has always experienced synthesia although she knows nothing about it beyond her personal experiences. Her mother thinks she's schizophren...more
Jasprit
4.5 stars

Ultraviolet reminded me of one of my all time favourite films Shutter Island. After finishing the book I sat there thinking to myself what has just happened?

In Ultraviolet we are told the story through Alison; she’s found herself in a psych unit after admitting she killed Tori a girl from school. Tori, hasn’t been seen since, but her blood was found at school at the spot where Alison the last person to have seen her had a confrontation with her. Alison’s mum has always believed Alison’s...more
Nic
Favourite Quote: "I might not be ready to pour out my feelings to the world, but I’d had enough of trying to ignore them."

Wow! Ultraviolet is an incredibly original and hypnotic read. I just loved how refreshingly different it was from the plot to the characters to even the style of writing. Everything was unique and it that made for such a standout read.

Ultraviolet is the story of Alison who is placed in a psychiatric unit after complete breakdown. She is also the main suspect in the murder cas...more
Jo
Initial Final Page Thoughts.
Enjoyable… but I kind of wish we could’ve read t’other story mentioned at the beginning with the girl with the odd-shaped birthmark. No offense Alison, you’re cool and all but… yeah. Also, can you say ‘sequel’? I’d be OK with that, I think.

High Points.
What an opening! Highly visual writing that did not provoke a single eye-roll (OK, there was a little towards the end but I’ll discuss that later). A strong heroine who only gets a bit annoying towards the end. Realistic...more
Scarlet
The good thing: Misleading blurb alert!! Ultraviolet is much more than a murder mystery.

The bad thing: It still bored me to death -_-


Before I justify my (unpopular) opinion, I have a confession to make. I was never really interested in Ultraviolet. Reading this book was an act of desperation. I badly needed a break from Picoult's super-sentimental preachings in The Storyteller and this was the only book on my Ipad that wasn't emotionally draining. So I guess this was doomed from the start.

---Som...more
Sandy
4.5 out of 5 stars

So unexpected in such a good way. It's impossible to talk about how amazing this book is without delving into spoiler territory, so I'm keeping my recommendation vague and short: READ THIS.

You start with that stellar hook (kudos to R.J. for captivating me from chapter zero) and you think you know what type of book Ultraviolet is going to be, but then it completely twists and morphs through different genres to become an entirely different book. And R. J. Anderson makes it WORK.

(...more
Lisa O.
In every novel worth its name there is an abundance of figures of speech such as metaphor, simile, oxymoron. They are part of the texture of the narration and are employed to enforce the first rule of Writing 101, which is to show and not to tell.

I remember quite distinctly having studied rhetorical figures during my high school years in Italian classes and I knew synesthesia from such classes. I still remember one example quite distinctly taken from a poem by Pascoli: “un pigolio di stelle” – a...more
Megan
Wow. Fortunately I had an entire day to devote to Ultraviolet because I was completely hooked. If you are reading this review you must have read the synopsis and know that it begins with sixteen (almost seventeen) year old Alison waking up in a psychiatric facility. Alison initially has no recollection of what placed her in the hospital, and in fact does not even have a history of mental illness.

Author R.J.Anderson does an amazing, simply amazing job of setting the stage for "is Alison crazy or...more
Laura Lulu
4.5 stars

Wow. Really cool book. I don't know where to begin. I feel like anything I write in this review will be a bit of a spoiler in one way or another, so I'll try to be vague.

The story is told in first person from the POV of Alison, a 16 year old girl who can see sounds and smell emotions and taste lies. Numbers each have a color, names have a personality, and the stars make music. And she has hidden this extra side of herself since she was 6 years old and shared it with her mother, who proc...more
Ceilidh
I am a sucker for the dark side of literature. Growing up, I went through a massive phase of reading books about crime, serial killers and down-trodden detectives looking to solve the case, so seeing the synopsis of this book on NetGalley made it an instant must read for me. The book was surprising on many levels and it’s a real genre bender, not quite the straight forward dark thriller I thought it was going to be, but did it work?

Some of it worked rather well. It becomes evident very early on...more
Angela
Read via NetGalley.

Ultraviolet is a novel unlike any other, I have to admit. But the plot was rather slow. You already know what is so special about Alison, if you know about some physical phenomenons. But it takes at least half of the book just for someone to reveal Alison's special senses. It is pretty common known knowledge that there are some people in the world who can see the colors in numbers. Those people (well some of them) are pretty famous or had news coverage of them on television or...more
Jessie  (Ageless Pages Reviews)
Read This Review & More Like It On My Blog!

This uniquely imaginative and intelligent novel was a terrifically melded blend of mystery, science fiction, fantasy and young-adult genres. Told through the eyes and life of Alison Jeffries, a seventeen year old girl, Alison is both a very unreliable narrator and a hugely sympathetic character. R.J. Anderson truly achieved the voice, and attitude of a sullen, hurting young woman. Alison is a living, breathing, three-dimensional character filled wit...more
~Tina~
3.5star

Okay guys, just to warn you now, my thoughts are very jumbled for this book and since I can't seem to express it the way I want to without giving spoilers, having written and re-written this a dozen times, I've deiced to just write it.
So. Spoilers...be warned.

Have you ever read the first book, Evernight by Claudia Gray? For those of you who have, you'll remember the infamous WTH moment. For those of you who haven't, lets just say there was a particular scene in the book that made it very...more
♔ Leah.
I really adored this book; it’s incredible in the concept that it’s based around because I’ve never read anything quite like it because I love it when genres are meshed together with a really interesting plot and protagonist.

Ultraviolet begins with our heroine, Alison, waking up in St. Lukes hospital not knowing why she is there and what happened prior to her waking up until slowly flashbacks hints that she may have somehow been involved in killing Tori Beauregard by disintegrating her after th...more
Katya
Due to the fact that I cannot write a review without spoiling the plot for everyone, this is going to be short.

I liked this book. The plot was gripping and the story held me from page one. Throughout the first two thirds of the novel, I was constantly guessing - was Alison telling the truth or was she going mad? What had really happened, and what had led onto that?

The characterization was superb. I loved how there was always another dimension to everybody, and how the stories were never the sam...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
  • Burn Bright (Night Creatures, #1)
  • Every Other Day
  • Fury
  • And All the Stars
  • Fireflies
  • Ward Against Death (Chronicles of a Reluctant Necromancer, #1)
  • Tankborn (Tankborn, #1)
  • Teeth
  • Lucid
  • Mercy (Mercy, #1)
  • Entangled
  • Hunting Lila (Lila, #1)
  • The Hallowed Ones (The Hallowed Ones, #1)
  • Night Beach
  • Luminous
  • Once Every Never (Never, #1)
  • Monstrous Beauty
  • The Predicteds
1330287
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.

*** ABOUT MY BOOK RATINGS ***
5 stars means that I loved the book so much that I foresee myself reading it again and again -- I reserve this for beloved classics and others that really knocked my socks off.

4 stars means that I re...more
More about R.J. Anderson...
Knife (Faery Rebels, #1) Quicksilver (Ultraviolet, #2) Arrow (Faery Rebels, #3) Rebel (Faery Rebels, #2) Swift (Swift, #1)

Share This Book

“But there were worse things than disappointment, and I'd lived through several of them already.” 150 likes
“I realized then that even though I was a tiny speck in an infinite cosmos, a blip on the timeline of eternity, I was not without purpose.” 113 likes
More quotes…