Review: The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich

the dead house

Title: The Dead House
Author: Dawn Kurtagich
Release Date/Publisher:  September 15th 2015 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Finished: May 21st 2015
Pages: 432-ARC Paperback-given for review

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Debut author Dawn Kurtagich is dead on in this terrifying psychological thriller!

Over two decades have passed since the fire at Elmbridge High, an inferno that took the lives of three teenagers. Not much was known about the events leading up to the tragedy – only that one student, Carly Johnson, vanished without a trace…

…until a diary is found hidden in the ruins.

But the diary, badly scorched, does not belong to Carly Johnson. It belongs to Kaitlyn Johnson, a girl who shouldn’t exist Who was Kaitlyn? Why did she come out only at night? What is her connection to Carly?

The case has been reopened. Police records are being reexamined: psychiatric reports, video footage, text messages, e-mails. And the diary.

The diary that paints a much more sinister version of events than was ever made publicly known.

What I Thought:

I received an ARC copy of this at a local blogger meet-up for free in exchange for an honest review.

First of all, the design for this is pretty awesome! It’s actually designed to look like a burnt journal inside, and all the extra passages and notes from other people including a detective and the doctor are included. It was a little hard at first to get used to the changing of time, from before the incident but I actually got into it pretty fast. I loved how they tied past journal entries, to interviews, and other forms of evidence after the incident.

Since my copy was an advanced one some of the images weren’t there but the placeholder for them was. Having them probably would have made the book a little creepier but I’m still excited to see what they look like in the final version. The ones that were included helped with that a lot.

And yes this book will creep you out a bit. It says it’s a psychological thriller, which it totally is. But as you read you starts to doubt and wonder what’s really going on, and if she is actually experiencing all of this or just crazy like people say. Even after finishing the book it’s still got me thinking about it and what really happened, and I think this is one I’m going to remember for a while. I can’t even describe anything without spoiling, so this is one book you’ll have to read to figure out what’s really going on. Is it all in her head, or is there something darker going on?

I definitely think this will be a big hit for Halloween this year and I really suggest you check it out. It will work your mind while at the same time make you want to leave your light on at night.

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