Sunday, 6 March 2016

Up on this hill, in this uncanny house, the wind makes this place creak, the lights they are flickering.

The Haunting

Publication Date: February 11th 2016
Publisher: Stripes Publishing
~A copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review~

Some curses grow stronger with time…
People say that all Cornish inns are haunted, but the Waterwitch’s history is particularly chilling. Built from the salvaged timber of a cursed ship, the guest house’s dark secrets go further back than anyone can remember.
Emma is permanently confined to a wheelchair after an accident at the Waterwitch which took place when she was ten. Seven years later, she decides to return to the place where the awful event occurred. But the ancient inn still has its ghosts, and one particular spirit is more vengeful than ever…
A chilling new title in the Red Eye horror series from the author of Frozen Charlotte.

I loved Frozen Charlotte last year, creepy dolls + sociopathic tendencies = my kind of book, so I was wondering how Alex Bell was going to top it. Some things in Frozen Charlotte, (the writing, the pace) stayed the same in The Haunting, whilst other components (the characters, the creepy) were different.

So, did The Haunting top Frozen Charlotte? 

Short answer: Yes.
You want the long answer anyway? Yay. 

The Haunting, is creepy as hell, I described Frozen Charlotte as psychologically disturbing, well, I take it back, because this was so much more disturbing and scary and I had to turn the light on at one point. 

The characters are quirky and I felt more of a connection with them. Emma, in a wheelchair and with help from her assistance dog, lives a relatively normal life, she has her days, but she doesn't let it stop her from doing what she wants. She's also feisty and points out the way people react to people in a wheelchair, stereotyping. Jem and Shell are still reeling from leaving their abusive father behind, have barely any money, Jem’s protective of Shell, and Shell, is a little eccentric.

The Haunting, as I said is more disturbing and it messes with your head because you're not quite sure what's real or not or if it's mass hysteria. Since we have three perspectives, Emma's, Jem's and Shell's and a haunted place, two nonbelievers and a believer (guess who that is?) it'll have you believing one minute, and then the more you discover of their pasts, second guessing yourself. 

If you've read Frozen Charlotte, you'll remember the lack of romance, which was refreshing, and it's the same in The Haunting, even though I was hoping to have some romance in there, but it's still refreshing to have the story be focused on the plot and the emphasis on friendship and family. If you liked Frozen Charlotte, Alex Bell doesn't disappoint with The Haunting.

Rating: 4/5