Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Review: The Dead and Buried

The Dead and Buried
By Kim Harrington
Expected publication January 1, 2013 by Scholastic

Jade is thrilled to finally be living the life she's asked for: a new house in a cool town. She doesn't mind being the new girl - no one knows her here, so she can have a fresh start. But, the perfection she imagines soon begins to crack: her younger brother claims to see a girl in his room and Jade notices her stuff being moved around. It's beginning to sound a lot like her dream house is haunted - and this ghost isn't going anywhere.

I love scary stories and seem not to have had much success with ghost stories lately. I requested an e-galley of this one a couple months back, figuring I'd give it a shot. I'm always looking for a good scare and was definitely in the mood for a ghost story when I recently started reading this one. I thought Jade was a really well-defined character - I liked that she had a unique but believable interest (she collects gemstones and knows all their meanings). I also really liked that this was a story about being the new girl in school without being a story about being the new girl in school - I like mostly that's because Jade has a great attitude about starting over and giving new things a try. I liked the secondary characters as well - Alexa was a bit over-the-top but still in a realistic way. Harrington may have tried a bit too hard to make all the characters equally multi-dimensional - I'm thinking of the super-hot jock who is also brilliant and happens to be poor. The main storyline here is really Jade's attempts to solve the mystery of the ghost in her house - who killed Kayla Sloane? This book reminded me quite frequently of Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier (and, even it hadn't, Harrington helpfully has Jade study the book in English class) but in a way that will be more accessible to teens (I read Rebecca in high school and loathed it). The romance and love triangle felt a bit convoluted and stereotypical, but I understand its relevance in the plot. Though Harrington tries to throw some red herrings into the mix, I found the identity of the killer quite obvious very early on - a disappointment, but I still enjoyed reading. Though not as scary as expected, I think this will be a good read for teens looking for a mysterious ghost story.

Thanks to the publisher for a digital advance reader's copy, provided via NetGalley.

Also note: the cover was changed prior to release. The top picture shows the cover that will be on the hardcover release in January. To the left here is the original cover, which I much prefer. Any thoughts?

No comments:

Post a Comment