Monday, August 2, 2010

Book Review: The House of Dark Shadows by Robert Liparulo

Age: 14+ (my guess)
Publication Date: May 2008
Tags: horror, thriller, adventure, mystery, family
Pages: 304
Series: 1st in a series
Book Acquisition: bought new paperback

My Rating: 5 / 5 Stars

(from Goodreads)
When the Kings move from L.A. to a secluded small town, fifteen-year-old Xander is beyond disappointed. He and his friends loved to create amateur films . . . but the tiny town of Pinedale is the last place a movie buff and future filmmaker wants to land.
But he, David, and Toria are captivated by the many rooms in the old Victorian fixer-upper they moved into--as well as the heavy woods surrounding the house.
They soon discover there's something odd about the house. Sounds come from the wrong directions. Prints of giant, bare feet appear in the dust. And when David tries to hide in the linen closet, he winds up in locker 119 at his new school.
Then the really weird stuff kicks in: they find a hidden hallway with portals leading off to far-off places--in long-ago times. Xander is starting to wonder if this kind of travel is a teen's dream come true . . . or his worst nightmare.

My Review:
I have been craving some good, old fashioned, horror and The House of Dark Shadows delivered it right up! I pretty much couldn't put the book down once I started reading. I mean, come on, R.L. Stine recommended it ;)

Xander and his family move into a house that is beyond creepy. Full of the possessions of it's former residents, it's hiding much more then years of dust and bad wiring. Voices seem to come from everywhere at once, sounds travel through rooms in unexpected ways, a linen closet playing double duty as a portal to a building across town -- and that's just the beginning.

More then once I had that horror movie reaction of 'don't open that door!', 'why did you open that door!?', 'seriously, what the hell is wrong with you!' -- it was great!

Was I truly frightened? No, not really. But it was a thrilling read nonetheless. I really love old, creepy houses - in theory mind you. So, I loved following Xander and David as they explored their new home. I loved the mystery of it all.

I'm really happy this is the first in a series. With 6 books total I'm hoping to get through them all soon as I'm really curious as to where the King family is heading.

If you're a fan of R.L. Stine or Christopher Pike, I think you would really enjoy The House of Dark Shadows. Also, in the world of YA paranormal reads, this one offers up something a little different. No romance, no typical supernatural creatures - lots of thrills and action and lots of unknowns. I'm supper excited to get started on book 2.

Dreamhouse Kings Series:
1. House of Dark Shadows
2. Watcher in the Woods
3. Gatekeepers
4. Timescape
5. Whirlwind
6. Frenzy

Linkage Love:
Thomas Nelson
Author's Website
Goodreads

11 comments:

  1. I saw this at B&N a few months ago and thought it sounded good. I want to read it even more now! Great review! I'll definitely have to get it from the library soon. :)

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  2. I've heard of these books, but hadn't thought much about them. I will definitely check this out when I'm in need of a good horror/suspense novel. I used to love some of RL Stine's book as a kid - in fact they still make new Goosebumps - Horrorland they're called and I buy them for my elementary library and the kids just eat them up. :) Great review!

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  3. This sounds good-it is refreshing to see a YA fantasy/horror novel that is not a Twilight clone! I need to find some newish fantasy/horror/sci fi authors for adults, as well. I loved reading these genres as a teen, but got away from them as an adult. I know there are good authors out there, I just haven't really had time to look. Any auggestions?

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  4. I haven't read much horror fiction recently, although I used to love it. Your review may have just tempted me back as this book sounds really good. Thanks for sharing.

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  5. One of my favorite things about book blogs is that I get to read about titles that sound awesome but that I've never heard of before. Case and point: this one! From your review it sounds like something I'd really enjoy. Thanks!

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  6. It sounds really interesting. If I'm in the mood for some horror this will definitely be the first I check out!

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  7. This sounds REALLY good. I may have to pick it up (before October.. I don't read scary in October lol).

    Speaking of Christopher Pike.. I'd never heard of him until I picked up the Secret of Ka which is coming out soon. Have you seen it?

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  8. I used to love R.L. Stine! However, I don't read this type of genre anymore. I love romance too much! The book sounds very interesting though. Sounds like it could be a great movie!

    Great Review! New follower here!

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  9. @Lydia
    I love love love Christopher Pike. He has a ton of teen horror books in the 80s and 90s. I owned most of them at some point in my life and have been trying to re-collect them :)
    I have an advanced review e-galley of The Secret of Ka - haven't had a chance to read it yet - I hope it's good as I haven't read anything new by Pike in quite some time.

    Thanks!

    ~Emily

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  10. Okay, I'm not a horror fan. Stephen King is a no no for me. I have my own nightmares, I don't need anyone to create them for me. Just how horror is it. If it's serial killer or blood and guts, i won't be able to read it. Could you email me and let me have a few spoilers. Because it sounds so intriguing. I can stand ghosts, vampires, werewolves, zombies, etc. but not real life bad guys. Isn't that silly? What is horror? hrose2931@gmail.com

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  11. Oh this one looks fantastic - love it form the cover to the review!

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