Review of The Dead House

Posted October 8, 2015 by Stormi in Book Reviews / 7 Comments

Review of The Dead House

I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich
Genres: Horror, YA
on September 15th 2015
Pages: 432
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley

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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.

Also by this author: Teeth in the Mist

Welcome to Monsters, Madmen, Mayhem. Oh my! Today I have a review of The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich. I have to say that I am not a real fan of how this book was put together. I would have enjoyed it more if it was just written like a normal book. 🙁

First Line

I am myself again. Carly has disappeared into the umbra, and I am alone.

What I thought of this book

The Dead House is just really messed up and freaky. It’s also really hard to try and explain what it is but know one thing it’s just messed up. Carly/Kaitlyn Johnson is a girl with DID (Dissociative Identity Disorder) and yeah if you are looking at that like I was it means Multiple personalities. Or at least that is what Dr. Lansing said she had as she has been treating her for a while. During the day the girl is Carly and at night she is Kaitlyn and basically the girl never sleeps. They are like sisters and even leave each other notes.

Some weird things happen and it’s all written down in diary notes from Kaitlyn or transcribed from Naida’s video footage among other things. One thing is for certain Carly/Kaitlyn is one messed up girl whether it’s DID or a possession or what have you that girl goes through a lot of messed up stuff.

I don’t really feel like I can say much more without giving things away, but it’s just a freaky mess. Parts of it was sort of creepy and I am sure some will think it is really creepy but I thought it was more freaky than anything. I am not even really sure how I feel about the main character because she was just so all over the place. Being in her mind was just something else.

The only thing I couldn’t really get into was the style it was written in, and I guess I didn’t pay enough attention to the synopsis or just didn’t realize exactly how it was going to all go down. I just didn’t like reading transcribed police reports, diary notes, etc and the fact that it kept skipping back and forth…one moment it’s like 119 days before the incident and then it’s back to 130 days before the incident and things like that. It was just messy to me. Great story but just not my style.

The ending didn’t go exactly how I wanted it to but it was a decent ending to what was a wild ride of weirdness.

I am going to suggest that if you like freaky, weird and totally messed up diary style fiction of creepy YA horror then you might really enjoy this. 🙂 I am curious to see what this author will bring to us next as this was her debut novel. I really like how her mind works so I am hoping for some regular style novels of weirdness in the future. 🙂

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7 responses to “Review of The Dead House

  1. Great review. It was a hard one to put into words. I know I didn’t like it as much as everyone else seems to like it. I agree I never felt a connection to Carly/Kaitlyn, but then it’s hard to like someone when you really can’t figure out who they are.

  2. The style is one I think I would like but it’s a hard one to pull off and it sounds like the author wasn’t successful. I have reservations about the Carly/Kaitlyn multiple personalities though; I think that would be the bigger issue for me.

  3. I think DID is the official psychological term nowadays for multiple personality disorder. This sounds like a fearky book with a messed up main character and I am not sure if it’s something for me, but it does sound original at least. I prefer stories written in a normal style as well.

  4. I like when a story is presented differently. You are right that she is one messed up girl and this is a freaky mess. I enjoyed it and will be writing my review later this month. I don’t normally read reviews before mine is written, but I couldn’t resist yours!

  5. Um no. I sometimes like the diary type read but this sounds way too messed up for me. Congrats on actually getting through the whole thing!

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