Title: Harmony House
Author: Nic Sheff
Release Date/Publisher: March 22nd 2016 by HarperTeen
Finished: January 20th 2016
Pages: 320-eBook ARC-Given for review
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Jen Noonan’s father thinks a move to Harmony House is the key to salvation, but to everyone who has lived there before, it is a portal to pure horror.
After Jen’s alcoholic mother’s death, her father cracked. He dragged Jen to this dilapidated old manor on the shore of New Jersey to “start their new lives”—but Harmony House is more than just a creepy old estate. It’s got a chilling past—and the more Jen discovers its secrets, the more the house awakens. Strange visions follow Jen wherever she goes, and her father’s already-fragile sanity disintegrates before her eyes. As the forces in the house join together to terrorize Jen, she must find a way to escape the past she didn’t know was haunting her—and the mysterious and terrible power she didn’t realize she had.
A classic horror story finds a terrifying home in Harmony House, drawing on favorite tropes and edgy, modern characters to create a chilling tale of blame, guilt, and ghostly revenge.
What I Thought:
I went into this thinking it was going to be a pretty good horror book, but unfortunately that’s not what I got. I really tried to like this one too but it wasn’t meant to be.
This book tried hard, a little too hard in my opinion, to try and spook people and give them a creepy feeling. I wasn’t scared or even interested as I read, and instead of creeped out it was just weird. It felt like the story was going by really fast, too fast for you to really get into it. Many things were glossed over and needed more explanation but there was none. The tension didn’t really have time to build like it does in most horror books, it just got straight to the point instead of trying to lure you in.
The writing was also kind of choppy and inconsistent at times. For instance it focused pretty hard on the past, a lot more than the present story-line. The transitions between the two could have been a lot smoother but instead she just kept getting launched into past visions out of nowhere when you’ve barely read any of the current story. After reading it I couldn’t tell you what happened to her at all since the past took over the whole book. She didn’t even have time to have a real personality because of this. Stuff just happened to her and she dealt with it.
This part doesn’t really affect my rating, but there were a ton of grammar and spelling mistakes. I know that it happens in advanced copies, but I really hope it got edited before release, because character names were missing and paragraphs repeated throughout the book. Don’t let that keep you from reading it though, it’s just my observation since it was really distracting as I read. (If you read this after release and you notice nothing please let me know!)
I don’t like leaving a review fully negative and not giving at least something I liked, but the only thing I can think of was that a few supporting characters were interesting. They don’t get much page time but they helped a little as I read. Except for her dad of course, I didn’t like him from the beginning.