The Dead House

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Author: Dawn Kurtagich

My Review: 5/5

I’ve never cared for YA novels. Even when I was a young teenager myself, I could never see the appeal of the same old fantasy love triangle scenarios. Those were really big in my day, maybe they still are, who knows. When you start to not recognize the Disney Stars on the J-14 or Tiger Beat magazines, you know you aren’t hip with the kids anymore. And since I don’t know who the hell Ross Lynch is, I guess I’m old now. All I know about him is he is some Teen Beach hottie who is going to be playing Jeffery Dahmer in an upcoming movie. Teen Beach hottie to now play a cannibalistic serial killer? This guy better have legit acting skills or I am going to be seriously pissed off when I see the movie.

ANYWAYS, I decided to take a break from reading my typical true crime cases to something lighter. I’m snickering at myself now for thinking that because I thought The Dead House was going to be a “light scary teen read.”

Boy, was I very wrong.

For one, I had no CLUE this story was the author’s debut novel. You would never guess considering it is an incredibly written story.

The formatting was very different, which I loved in the end. The book is compiled of diary entries, psych therapy sessions and police interrogation interviews. It kept the story fast paced and with so many twists, I had an extremely difficult time putting it down. That must have been how I finished the book in only two days.

I won’t give out too much about the story, but the jist of it is the tale is told from the perspective of Kaitlyn Johnson (for the most part,) who attends Elmbridge High. Except, many claim she isn’t real; and she might not be, because she is the alter ego of Carly Johnson. They consider themselves sisters who share a body. Carly gets the daytime, Kaitlyn gets the night and considers herself “a child of darkness.” Carly is the good, shy and quiet one while Kaitlyn is stubborn, rebellious and self harms. And then one day, Kaitlyn wakes up in the morning to find Carly gone.

This was an insane read, but so amazing and I’ve NEVER read anything quite like it. The truth is, you don’t really know what is happening in the story. Is Kaitlyn real? Is she telling the truth? Is Carly real? Is Kaitlyn and Carly’s psychiatrist lying to them? Is there something paranormal creeping in the shadows?

The protagonist is sometimes so lost in her own thoughts you can’t even consider her reliable; so actually summarizing this book would be very difficult because you don’t for sure what is going on.

Bottom line, I just loved this novel. It’s a horror, but whether you consider it a psychological thriller or a paranormal story depends on what you think happens. And I think that is why this story is so deliciously addictive.

Down a Dark Hall

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Author: Lois Duncan

My Rating: 5/5

It’s Halloween! So what better day would there be to review a deliciously spooky read?

Down a Dark Hall begins with our main protagonist, Kit Gordy, starting her first day at a Blackwood, a boarding school for girls. She is hesitant at first because while she planned to attend the new school with her best friend Tracy, only she out of the two of them was accepted into the exclusive academy.

Blackwood is a massive and gorgeous mansion, renovated by the headmistress of the academy, Madame Duret. Madame Duret expresses he love for the arts by incorporating her passion into her school’s curriculum.

At first glance, Blackwood appears to be an ideal boarding school; beautifully furnished rooms, private tutors and many things to discover and learn.

In the beginning, everything starts off fine, but Kit begins to have a nagging sense that something is off with Blackwood. Kit also is shocked when she finds out only three other students were accepted into the school.

And why are the bedroom doors only lockable from the outside, instead of the inside?

This novel was a really quick and enjoyable read for me. Not only because it is under 200 pages in length, but because of its riveting speed. There is never a dull or fluffy moment in Down a Dark Hall, and as cliche as it sounds, it really was a very hard book to put down for me.

Down a Dark Hall is a creepy and mysterious thriller that I wouldn’t be surprised rereading it, 5/5 stars.

Let the Right One In

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Author: John Ajvide Lindqvist

My Rating: 5/5

To sum up this book review in one sentence it would have to be that this is a real vampire novel.

Not meaning to bash Twihards, but this is what I would consider to be an excellent vampire story. (So no sparkling vampires or everyone falling head over heels in love with a girl that has virtually no personality.)

This is a vampire story that is raw, creepy and chilling. (With no Mary Sue protagonist, thank God.) Let the Right One In is not by any means for children or young teens. The novel covers issues such as bullying, pedophilia, prostitution, alcoholism and drug use, despite the fact our main characters are twelve years old. (Or have been twelve for a long time.) And do not think that these issues are simply glossed over, they are very detailed and incredibly disturbing.

The story itself was a a quick page turner for me and I didn’t find there to be any fluff or fillers. A truly classic horror story.

Let the Right One In is one of those books that clings onto you for a few days after you finish reading it; it is just that haunting.

I absolutely loved it, 5/5 hands down. This book is also in my Top 10 for best books I ever read, ever.

Seriously, I can’t highly recommend it enough.

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Or if you are more of a movie person, there are two movie adaptions, the original Swedish version and the American version. Watch the Swedish one, the settings are better and the actors are more talented and portray their characters very well.

Here is a really good clip, one of my favourite scenes: