October 27, 2020

#BookReview: The Haunted (The Haunted #1) by @vegarollins

Synopsis: From Danielle Vega, YA’s answer to Stephen King, comes a new paranormal novel about dark family secrets, deep-seated vengeance, and the horrifying truth that evil often lurks in the unlikeliest of places.

Hendricks Becker-O’Malley is new in town, and she’s bringing baggage with her. With a dark and wild past, Hendricks doesn’t think the small town her parents moved her to has much to offer her in terms of excitement. She plans on laying low, but when she’s suddenly welcomed into the popular crowd at school, things don’t go as expected. 

Hendricks learns from her new friends that the fixer-upper her parents are so excited about is notorious in town. Local legend says it’s haunted. Hendricks doesn’t believe it. Until she’s forced to. Blood-curdling screams erupt from the basement, her little brother wakes up covered in scratches, and something, or someone pushes her dad down the stairs. 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.


Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
My Review: This was one thriller that once you start you won't be able to put down. I had a big let down with a few other horror books this month so I was excited to have the chance to reread this one.  The twist was perfect and I just loved the outcome!! I am also excited that this ended up being a series because I know that when I finished this the first time I was disappointed with how it ended.  So I hope that this keeps going!! I need more! 


"Vega's take on the haunted house subgenre features an eclectic, well-fitted mix of supernatural spookiness and gore...A gently horrid reminder that some ghosts can be very real."--Kirkus Reviews

"Even the most diehard aficionados of horror may find themselves leaving the lights on after reading this one."--BCCB

From School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up—Hendricks arrives in the small New York town of Drearford with her baby brother, her house-flipping parents, and major baggage from her hometown of Philly. Escalating incidents with her former boyfriend Grayson forced her family to relocate with the goal of renovating a run-down old house, which Hendricks soon learns has a macabre history. Several teens, curious about the new girl, quickly fold her into their close-knit group, and even more quickly, school hottie Connor makes it clear he is interested. But with flashbacks and references to troubles with her ex, Hendricks isn't jumping into anything soon. As she learns more about the history of the house, as well as the connections between it and her enigmatic neighbor Eddie, disturbances in the house turn from scary to violent. Ultimately Hendricks and Eddie must battle the house and the hungry spirits that inhabit it. Interplay and dialogue between the teens ring true, more so than the almost nonexistent relationship between Hendricks and her apparently oblivious parents. Allusions to cruel bullying as the catalyst to events almost get lost as the story culminates in a finale that, while dramatic, feels rushed and overcrowded with explanations. The relationship with Grayson and the role alcohol played are intriguing yet used as a red herring rather than fully explored. Socioeconomic status, poverty, and mental illness are examined through the equally haunted Eddie, who feels that there is something "rotten" with the entire town. VERDICT Teens will relate to the characters and enjoy the creepiness, making this a strong choice where horror is in demand.—Lee De Groft, Jamestown High School, Williamsburg, VA --This text refers to the hardcover edition.

About the Author

Danielle Vega spent her childhood hiding under the covers while her mother retold tales from the pages of Stephen King novels. Now as an adult, she can count on one hand the number of times in her life she's been afraid. Danielle is the author of the Merciless series and Survive the Night. Follow her @dvegabooks. --This text refers to the hardcover edition.

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