The Girl from the Well
by Rin Chupeco Published by Sourcebooks Fire
on August 5th 2014 Genres: Horror & Ghost Stories
, Young Adult Pages:
You may think me biased, being murdered myself. But my state of being has nothing to do with the curiosity toward my own species, if we can be called such. We do not go gentle, as your poet encourages, into that good night.
A dead girl walks the streets.
She hunts murderers. Child killers, much like the man who threw her body down a well three hundred years ago.
And when a strange boy bearing stranger tattoos moves into the neighborhood so, she discovers, does something else. And soon both will be drawn into the world of eerie doll rituals and dark Shinto exorcisms that will take them from American suburbia to the remote valleys and shrines of Aomori, Japan.
Because the boy has a terrifying secret - one that would just kill to get out.
The Girl from the Well is A YA Horror novel pitched as "Dexter" meets "The Grudge", based on a well-loved Japanese ghost story.
The Girl from the Well is primarily about a spirit named Okiku who wanders the world to free the spirits of murdered children, while also killing those responsible for their deaths. She soon comes across Tark, a teen who has troubles of his own with a nasty spirit trapped within him. The scariest part of this book was the creepy, gut-wrenching feeling of dread when you see innocent, unsupervised children and know that someone out there could be watching and waiting to steal them away to satisfy their sick twistedness. There are a few other slightly creepy scenes involving the spirit Okiku and the malicious spirit within Tark, but for the most part the creep factor is hindered by its predictability.
Despite being really similar to many other horror movies and books related to Japanese ghosts, The Girl from the Well remains fun and quick to read for anyone who has a taste for this kind of horror and easy to read style. Some sentences in the book are written into separate lines (if I’m explaining it correctly). I found it to be a little off-putting at times, however it did grow on me towards the end.
An example of this is:
Overall, I liked The Girl from the Well enough to seek out the sequel The Suffering.
This review will contain spoilers. Ruin and Rising
by Leigh Bardugo Published by Macmillan
on June 17th 2014 Genres: Fairy Tales & Folklore
, Fantasy & Magic
, Young Adult Pages:
The capital has fallen. The Darkling rules Ravka from his shadow throne. Now the nation's fate rests with a broken Sun Summoner, a disgraced tracker, and the shattered remnants of a once-great magical army. Deep in an ancient network of tunnels and caverns, a weakened Alina must submit to the dubious protection of the Apparat and the zealots who worship her as a Saint. Yet her plans lie elsewhere, with the hunt for the elusive firebird and the hope that an outlaw prince still survives. Alina will have to forge new alliances and put aside old rivalries as she and Mal race to find the last of Morozova's amplifiers. But as she begins to unravel the Darkling's secrets, she reveals a past that will forever alter her understanding of the bond they share and the power she wields. The firebird is the one thing that stands between Ravka and destruction—and claiming it could cost Alina the very future she’s fighting for. Ruin and Rising is the thrilling final installment in Leigh Bardugo's Grisha Trilogy.
I knew coming into this book that Alina and Mal would be together in the end, as much as I hate them as a couple. I don’t know exactly why I don’t like Mal, but I never disliked a pairing/male lead so much. I just felt like Alina’s entire existence revolved around him. I thought the whole third amplifier thing/coming back to life was cheesy. Their ordinary life together bit made me roll my eyes. All three books just for that? Okay. I feel like I wasted my time. The first book was great, the second was okay, and this one was just /no/.
The Darkling’s demise was coming, I knew. But it was boring and should have been built up more than it was. Badass characters should have badass deaths. His death was the only thing that stirred any kind of emotion besides the cheated feeling I got with Alina and Mal’s ending. I wish there could be a book solely about the Darkling because he’s the only one worth caring about besides Nikolai.
Speaking of Nikolai, he wasn’t well treated in this book. I felt terrible about what he went through. With the darkness still inside him, I wonder how this would affect his life. And I really wish he and Alina would have gotten together. He received the short end of the stick.
At least, thankfully, Mal wasn’t as whiney and controlling like in the last book. Alina made most of her own decisions. That’s all the positives I can think of right now. I’m a little weary of following series now, but I’ll hang in there.