Wednesday 12 August 2015

'The Dead house' by Dawn Kurtagich (****)

Hello readers! Today I have ANOTHER book review for you (ooooh you lucky things!) and it is a review of the ever so talented Dawn Kurtagich's The Dead House. I received this book from Orion Books aaaagggggeeeesssss ago, but I only got around to reading and reviewing it a few weeks ago. Did I mention my TBR pile is ten miles long? Anyway, I was really excited to start reading The Dead House as it has been getting a lot of hype all over twitter and on the blogs I read, and also because when I received it in the post, it had a creepy post-it note on it cursing me so...... Yeah. I love a good creepy read right before bedtime. 

Intrigued? Here's the blurb...

Part-psychological thriller, part-urban legend, this is an unsettling narrative made up of diary entries, interview transcripts, film footage transcripts and medical notes. Twenty-five years ago, Elmbridge High burned down. Three people were killed and one pupil, Carly Johnson, disappeared. Now a diary has been found in the ruins of the school. The diary belongs to Kaitlyn Johnson, Carly’s identical twin sister. But Carly didn’t have a twin...

Re-opened police records, psychiatric reports, transcripts of video footage and fragments of diary reveal a web of deceit and intrigue, violence and murder, raising a whole lot more questions than it answers.

Who was Kaitlyn and why did she only appear at night? Did she really exist or was she a figment of a disturbed mind? What were the illicit rituals taking place at the school? And just what did happen at Elmbridge in the events leading up to ‘the Johnson Incident’?

Chilling, creepy and utterly compelling, THE DEAD HOUSE is one of those very special books that finds all the dark places in your imagination, and haunts you long after you've finished reading.

I loved the format of the book and found it really interesting how instead of straight narrative, we were told the story through video footage and interviews with police and therapists. We were allowed an insight into Carly/Kaitlyn's brain that through a normal narrative, we would not have gained insight to. It also made the story a whole lot creepier, as I felt a bit detached from the characters, leaving me with a birds-eye view of everything that went on. This lack of understanding made me feel very on-edge, which was exactly what The Dead House was about. 

That being said, the characterisation was excellent. Each character complimented the other perfectly, and added to the whole creepy atmosphere that was really unsettling. The narrative embodied a frenzied madness, and a feeling of everything spiralling out of control- it felt like a psychological horror thriller movie, all mixed in one. The end of the book definitely left me asking more questions than being satisfied with answers, but the thrill that it gave me was worth it. I haven't been terrified by a book for a while, but Kurtagich's writing definitely chilled my blood. I can't wait to read more from her! However, now I feel like I have no other choice but to sit on the beach with Sarah Dessen books all summer!

Make sure to keep an eye out for my spot on The Dead House blog tour!

Buy The Dead House here:

Check out Dawn Kurtagich here:

Until next time :)

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