creepy supernatural with lots of twists
8 SOULS is a creepy thriller-esque fantasy that follows Francesca (Chessie), a seventeen-year-old girl whose parents are about to get divorced. In the process, her parents have decided that it would be best if she spent the summer with her grandparents in the middle of nowhere in Iowa. A city girl at heart, Chessie is not happy about going to such a small town. There are also her concerns about the house across the street.
Across from her grandparents is an old, abandoned house where eight people were killed brutally about a hundred years before. Chessie has been seeing it every night in her dreams ever since she can remember. She knows this isn’t normal, but she doesn’t know why she sees it. As she is staying with her grandparents, more and more supernatural things seem to be building up. Chessie isn’t sure who she can trust or how to get help as she tries to figure out her connection with the house.
Things evolve in ways I did not expect, and the ending was definitely a surprise. I do not want to say too much to avoid spoiling it, because this book is definitely a pulse-pounding page-turner. However, the reason I am not giving it more stars is not for the excellent writing (because this adds to the suspense very well) but for the plot holes, mainly in terms of timelines and clear connections. A lot of things are waved away by ‘just knowing,’ and this felt like an easy way to dispel the concerns. The timeline for events does not seem quite clear and full explanations of why things happened the way they did (in terms of the paranormal elements) are never really clarified. I would have liked a bit more backstory and explanations to go with things.
In terms of the romance, it felt very insta-love, and I did not fully buy it. With everything going on, it felt superfluous/was not needed to fill this otherwise creepy and engaging story. I would have liked to keep it as just a thriller type book with a more solid plot. Regardless, it was highly addicting as a read, so I would recommend for people who like mysteries and thriller-like supernatural plots. The first half of the book does creepy insanely well.