Featured Review: The Haunted (Danielle Vega)
About This Book:
Clean slate. That's what Hendricks Becker-O'Malley's parents said when they moved their family to the tiny town of Drearfield, New York. Hendricks wants to lay low and forget her dark, traumatic past. Forget him. But things don't go as planned. Hendricks learns from new friends at school that Steele House--the fixer upper her parents are so excited about--is notorious in town. Local legend says it's haunted. But Hendricks isn't sure if it's the demons of her past haunting her ...or of the present. Voices whisper in her ear as she lays in bed. Doors lock on their own. And, then, one night, things take a violent turn. With help from the mysterious boy next door, Hendricks makes it her mission to take down the ghosts . . . if they don't take her first.
*Review Contributed By Kim Baccellia Staff Reviewer*
Hendricks and her family buy an old building in Drearford, New York after an incident. Her family 'hopes' this will be a fresh start for all of them. Only little do they know that the house they purchased is the site of a murder. Hendricks senses strange things in the house. Plus, the resident cute pariah guy has a link to what happened in the house. After a tragedy, a bloody note warns that there will be one more victim. Can Hendricks stop this from happening before her family are the next victims?
What worked: This is a chilling paranormal story that will keep you on the edge of your seat. Think Riverdale meets Amityville. Some great horror scenes that are gripping and haunting. The middle of the novel had me turning the pages. Let's just say I had the lights on while reading. There's one scene that is gruesome and horrifying. The writing here felt like Stephen King-- lots of horror, suspense, and surprises.
Hendricks pass has her vulnerable to things around here. Add to that leaving her friends and starting new at a small town high school can't be easy. The locals are accepting of her and try to let her join their crowd. There's the cute guy, Connor, who lets Hendricks know he wants to be more than friends. I liked Connor. He understood why she didn't want to rush into a relationship right off the bat. The other friends seem a little edgier and have a 'Mean girl' vibe going on, especially around Eddie, the high school outcast.
Okay, what I had a hard time with had to be how the parents never seemed to be around. They would leave almost every weekend. It didn't seem believable to me. Wouldn't they want to be close by, especially after what happened to Hendricks with her boyfriend?
I also didn't buy that Hendricks would fall that fast in love with Eddie. Sure, the vengeful ghosts would have her seeking for someone for comfort, but it seemed too forced for her to think there would be more to their relationship.
And the ending left me very upset. I won't spoil it, but it felt rushed and there wasn't any real conclusion. But that's just me.
Chilling paranormal story where the ghosts of the past seek vengeance and the teen who tries to save her family before they're the next victims.
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