Melting Rock is a huge concert (akin to Woodstock but not as big) that takes place every year. Reporter Alex Bernier usually steers clear of this loud, smelly outing, but this time that's not an option as her editor sends her there to cover the event for the paper. Alex doesn't think there will be anything of substance to write about, but oh, how wrong she is.
At Melting Rock, Alex meets and interviews the Jarlesburg Eight—teenagers who have been attending the concert together for years. Later that night, one of them is found dead—apparently of a drug overdose—by his friends. By the end of the concert, two more have OD'd from tainted ecstasy and the Jarlesburg Eight is now the Jarlesburg Five. Were the drugs meant to kill these particular kids, or was it all a horrendous mistake? Alex plans on finding out, no matter the price.
ECSTASY is a book that looks into several important matters, which Saulnier handles carefully and without preaching. What stands out in her books is the depth of plot. She's able to realistically string seemingly random occurrences together. Saulnier is also great at handling her characters, and I love that Alex never becomes a damsel in distress. Highly recommended. (Mar., 352 pp., $23.95)