Nikki Kill has synesthesia, a rare disorder that causes her senses to overlap. In Nikki’s case, she sees colors tied to specific emotions in her environment. So when the number of a popular, uber-rich girl she barely knows pops up on her phone in orange (the color of emergencies) the night she’s nearly beaten to death, Nikki becomes obsessed with finding out why. Nikki’s synesthesia becomes an interesting and integral part of the story, both in helping her solve the crime as well as giving her past a vehicle to haunt her. At times, she can be a frustrating character who makes some questionable decisions as she investigates the murder, and it isn’t always obvious what drove the action. However, her lack of charm is so intriguing you’ll keep turning the page. Shade Me is an intense, gritty thriller with an unforgettable main character.