Stitch (Stitch Trilogy, Book 1)

Rated 4.44/5 based on 9 reviews
A girl. A ghost. And a secret much more terrifying than either of them could have ever imagined… But what college freshman Alessa hasn't figured out yet is that she's not really a student, the object of her obsession is no ghost, and her sneaking suspicions that something sinister is lurking behind the walls of her university's idyllic campus are only just scratching the surface... More

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About Samantha Durante

Samantha lives in Westchester County, New York with four of the five loves of her life – her husband, son, younger daughter, and cat – and carries her fifth love, her stillborn eldest daughter, in her heart. An avid reader herself, Samantha’s dream is to bring the same delight to readers that other authors have brought to her life. In addition to penning novels and writing candidly about grief, she is also a sometimes freelance writer/consultant – though more often than not these days she’s on full-time mom duty! A former software engineer, Samantha said goodbye to the corporate world in 2010 to pursue her entrepreneurial dreams and lifelong love of writing. Learn more at

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Also in Series: Stitch Trilogy

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Faye Blume reviewed on Dec. 1, 2012

This is one of the rare times when I don’t know how to start my review because, well… I enjoyed this book so much that I forgot to take notes, I didn’t stop to think about anything, I just went with it and loved every word! So, “Stitch”… “Stitch” is one of those very few books that pull you in and make you think about the characters and “OMG, what’s going to happen next” even when you should be working or going about your daily routines. Every time I got some free minutes, I’d just grab my Kindle and steal two or three pages. That’s how good “Stitch” was!

Samantha Durante managed to create a compelling universe where nothing is what it seems to be and the reader is as clueless as the characters themselves. Her novel has everything it needs to keep you on the edge until the very last pages: fast-paced action, incredibly well developed characters, a sweet romance story, a complex plot, a major twist and some very well placed clues that somehow prepare you for what’s to come, yet when IT happens you’re taken by surprise. “Stitch” has easily earned its place on my list of favorite dystopian novels.

Alessa Khole is a student at the Eastern State University and is struggling to build a new life after her parents’ death. But she’s got only one friend, Janie, and she can’t care less about the campus life and the sorority parties, so everything seems pointless… she can’t bring herself to move on. Until she starts seeing… a ghost. What’s even stranger than being the only one in the house who can see the apparition, is that she feels like she knows this blue-eyed boy and craves to hold him and keep him safe. Confused by these unexplainable feelings, she is determined to find out who the boy is and how he died, hoping this will bring her peace. This is how Alessa learns his name is Isaac Mason and he died in a fire in 1917 along with his entire family. Sounds like a ghost story until now, right? Well… you need to brace yourselves because Isaac is no ghost, he didn’t die in a fire, Janie is not Alessa’s best friend and Alessa is not even a student at the ESU! Confused much? Yeah, I’ve warned you you’ll be just as clueless as the characters, because someone is playing tricks with their minds and their memories… they don’t know what’s real anymore and what if everything is just a… show?

Ok, I’m not going to tell you anything else about the plot because I really don’t want to spoil your surprise. So I’ll tell you about the characters. I loved the fact that the author took her time to thoroughly describe the characters and their emotions, following all their thoughts, plans, hopes and insecurities. I could really relate to them and I genuinely cared about Alessa, Isaac and Janie. They are realistic, alive and palpable. Also, the plot was well-thought and the story kept me glued to the pages no matter if it was a ghost story and a sweet romance (the first half of the book) or a complex, intriguing dystopia (the second half).

Samantha Durante’s debut novel, “Stitch”, is a book you won’t easily forget. I can’t wait to read the next novel in the trilogy – “Shudder” – and see how Alessa and Isaac manage to survive in the desolate world they’ve been thrown into and bring freedom to all those who are trapped in the cruel game created by a higher, privileged class.
(reviewed the day of purchase)
Jen Minkman reviewed on Sep. 16, 2012

I really was intrigued by the blurb of this book and immediately bought the ePub version of it on Smashwords when it came out. And the storyline IS really intriguing, which is the only reason I kept reading this book past the first few chapters, because there's just too much of an info-dump going on here. I mean, the first two chapters have NO dialogue at all. None. It's just descriptions of what Alessa has already went through before the story actually starts. Even seeing 'her' ghost for the first time is described in the past perfect tense. We're not there the moment it happens. That just doesn't make sense... like this, the supposed mystery doesn't draw the reader in, because there's no excitement, no emotions, no surprise, no nothing... it has already happened and we weren't witness to it.
But of course, the plot is intriguing so I kept reading to find out what would happen next. Like other reviewers have said, the story is very original and refreshing (albeit a bit sketchy sometimes, I had to suspend disbelief quite a few times), but the execution is poor. 'Show, don't tell' is my main advice to the author to make the next book in the series more captivating. And ditch the elaborate descriptions of Alessa putting on clothes or eating food or whatnot. It doesn't advance the story, so just leave it out :)
(reviewed 22 days after purchase)
sara levin reviewed on Aug. 6, 2012
(no rating)
When a friend first recommended this book to me, I was a little skeptical because I'm not a sci-fi fan at all. However, I decided to trust my friend on this one and am sure glad I did. I was instantly pulled into this book (it usually takes me a while to get into books but not this one). Then wow, was totally not expecting that twist. I blame this book for making me late to class, almost miss my subway stop (a couple of times), and a not so great midterm exam because once I started it, I couldn't put it down! WHEN IS THE NEXT BOOK COMING OUT?!?!?!?!?!?
(reviewed 5 days after purchase)
Bow TheCow reviewed on Aug. 2, 2012

Stitch is a great book from a new, young author! As a male reader, I often find books "popular" books excessively "girly" or too focused on the troubles of a teenage girl. Stitch, however, surprised me. It is written much better than most of the aforementioned novels and appeals to all types of readers with its plot twists and dystopian themes.

I highly recommend Stitch. Can't wait for the sequel!
(reviewed 2 days after purchase)
Laura Broker reviewed on Aug. 2, 2012

I couldn't put this book down! The story is riveting and not at all what I expected. I love romance novels but was a little leery about the paranormal stuff. I'm so happy I picked this up! The paranormal aspect adds to the romance and intrigue! I love it! I will NEVER pass up a paranormal/science fiction book again! Can't wait for the second installment!
(reviewed the day of purchase)
Joan Xu reviewed on Aug. 2, 2012

Wow. What an engaging story! When I first started reading it, having no idea what to expect, I thought - this is just going to be another story about a girl who falls in love with a ghost - but, I was wrong! The book is completely entertaining from beginning to end, with a few surprising turns that draw you further into the story with each page turn. I read this book through Kindle app on my iPhone and found myself reading whenever/where I could - waiting for the train, standing in line at the store, brushing my teeth, etc.

The writing is excellent and filled with stimulating imagery, flashbacks, and foreshadowing. Also, I really just can't get enough of young adult books featuring heroines who are just normal girls like this book's main character, Alessa, the procrastinating college student we all were at that age.

Samantha Durante, when's the next book coming out? I'm dying to find out how the story unfolds!
(reviewed the day of purchase)
Mikey Jones reviewed on Aug. 2, 2012

Stitch is a serious page-turner! It's a great choice for any reader interested in sci fi, fantasy, paranormal, or just coming-of-age stories. Somehow, Durante stitches (aha!) all of those genres into one.

I don't want to give away anything from the story, since there are many twists and turns, but I will say that I'm looking forward to Alessa's adventures in later installments of the Stitch series.
(reviewed the day of purchase)
Diane Burns reviewed on Aug. 1, 2012

This book had my complete attention from start to finish. I began reading and got so caught up in the characters and their lives that when the twist came along I absolutely could not put the book down. I felt like I was right there in the mix of things. These characters are so easy to relate to. The book is very well written and although it says young adult, anyone can thoroughly enjoy it.
I highly recommend this book and I can't wait for the rest of the books in this series to come out!
(reviewed the day of purchase)
Useful Idiot reviewed on Aug. 1, 2012

When I heard "paranormal romance" and "dystopian sci-fi" I must say I was pretty skeptical, but the author manages to blend these unlike genres with ease, making for a really enjoyable reading experience. I'm typically a very slow reader but this book flows very naturally and definitely makes you want to keep turning the page. I thought the characters and settings were very detailed and well described, so I found I had a vivid picture in my mind of what was going on the whole time. I loved how realistic and down to earth the characters were as it made it extremely easy to relate to them and feel a kind of emotional connection. The plot is complex but well thought out - if I had one complaint it was how much my head spun about 2/3 of the way in.

With all the twists and turns in this one, I'm really looking forward to seeing where the rest of the trilogy goes.
(reviewed the day of purchase)
MR reviewed on Aug. 1, 2012

Wow! An entertaining page-turner - I RACED through this book. The author does a fabulous job of building suspense, especially during the first several chapters as Alessa tries to piece together the story of the ghost she keeps seeing. This book introduces a fascinating love story set within a world that is not quite the one we know – hinted at in the book description, but I won’t give away anything more! My one critique: I wish the book had more thoroughly explored the bond between Alessa and the male lead, but I expect I’ll get more of this in the next book. Definitely looking forward to it.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

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