The Cemetery Boys

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The Cemetery Boys
Publisher
Genre(s)
Age Range
12+
Release Date
March 31, 2015
ISBN
978-0062307880
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Part Hitchcock, part Hinton, this first-ever stand-alone novel from Heather Brewer, New York Times bestselling author of the acclaimed Chronicles of Vladimir Tod series, uses classic horror elements to tell a darkly funny coming-of-age story about the dangerous power of belief and the cost of blind loyalty. When Stephen's dad says they're moving, Stephen knows it's pointless to argue. They're broke from paying Mom's hospital bills, and now the only option left is to live with Stephen's grandmother in Spencer, a backward small town that's like something out of The Twilight Zone. Population: 814. Stephen's summer starts looking up when he meets punk girl Cara and her charismatic twin brother, Devon. With Cara, he feels safe and understood—and yeah, okay, she's totally hot. In Devon and his group, he sees a chance at making real friends. Only, as the summer presses on, and harmless nights hanging out in the cemetery take a darker turn, Stephen starts to suspect that Devon is less a friend than a leader. And he might be leading them to a very sinister end. . . .

Editor reviews

2 reviews
A read that will keep you questioning, even after you finish it.
Overall rating
 
4.0
Plot
 
4.0
Characters
 
4.0
Writing Style
 
4.0
The Cemetery Boys was a pretty surprising read. I wasn't expecting to like this one as much as I did. There was a great atmosphere - it was very creepy and an interesting mystery. It had a touch of the paranormal that kept me guessing right up to the end (and past that to be honest). The Winged Ones are fascinating. Devon and the boys certainly believe in them and Stephen can't quite decide whether he does or not - and neither could I. It could have been a case of mental instability that latched onto a small town myth, or there could have actually been giant winged creatures that attacked people in the town.

The characters were interesting enough, but I would have appreciated a little more time with them. It seemed like there were too many boys in the gang to get an opportunity to learn about any one of them. Stephen was a self proclaimed boring guy and I didn't have the strength of feeling for him that I had hoped. I was a big fan of his bitter and cruel grandmother - at least she kept things interesting.

The plot of The Cemetery Boys didn't quite go the typical route. There were some events that were pretty predictable, but one or two plot twists that I didn't see coming. It was fast paced enough to keep me connected to the plot while still allowing for an air of mystery.

There was one particularly large issue (though I don't know how much power an author has over this, it may be a publishing decision): I hate prologues that consist of an insert of a scene from later in the book. In some books, the prologue is an integral part of the plot, in others it acts as some type of teaser for the most exciting part of the book. In this case, it was the latter. It featured a seriously important scene which gave away a large part of the story. Reading it ruined the flow for me as I just kept waiting for that scene to happen. If you have this one on the TBR pile, do yourself a favor and skip the prologue.
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The Cemetery Boys
(Updated: February 02, 2015)
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Brewer brings us a new tale that is psychological horror with a dash of STAND BY ME. This time readers are introduced to Stephen who ends up Spencer, a small town with a horrific urban legend that the whole town seems to believe.

What worked:

This latest from Brewer is twisted and dark. Just like I like them! It reminded me of a Twilight Zone episode with the horror that isn't gory but rather psychological. Stephen isn't too excited to be moving with his father to Spencer after the money runs out after they place his mother in a psych ward. Stephen's disappointment in not only leaving Colorado but his father's decision to move in with his mother is very plausible.

The teens in Spencer are parts LOST BOYS with a dash of STAND BY ME only in this case the charismatic twin Devon screams danger. His punk twin Cara is the girl from the other side of the tracks. I bought the attraction between Stephen and Cara and could see how he would struggle with warnings from her brother about dating her.

The whole town is creepy down to the small town librarian. **Love the character reveal with that much used PETALS IN THE WIND book. Stephen's search to find out the truth on what Devon might be doing down to the winged creatures ends with a very surprising reveal that totally took me off guard. **Love when that happens!

Twisted walk into a psychological horror tale where the power of belief can take a very wicked turn. A sure must read for other minions out there.
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