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 Ghost Tree by Christina Henry
Genres: YA, Horror
Published by Berkley Books on September 8, 2020
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Also by this author: Kicking It: These Boots are Made for Stalking, Lost Boy: The True Story of Captain Hook, The Girl in Red, Near the Bone
When people go missing in the sleepy town of Smith's Hollow, the only clue to their fate comes when a teenager starts having terrifying visions, in a chilling horror novel from national bestselling author Christina Henry.
When the bodies of two girls are found torn apart in the town of Smiths Hollow, Lauren is surprised, but she also expects that the police won't find the killer. After all, the year before her father's body was found with his heart missing, and since then everyone has moved on. Even her best friend, Miranda, has become more interested in boys than in spending time at the old ghost tree, the way they used to when they were kids.
So when Lauren has a vision of a monster dragging the remains of the girls through the woods, she knows she can't just do nothing. Not like the rest of her town. But as she draws closer to answers, she realizes that the foundation of her seemingly normal town might be rotten at the center. And that if nobody else stands for the missing, she will.
Here is what I thought
So I don’t know if my loving Lost Boy was just a fluke and this author is just not for me but I really wasn’t a fan of this one. I am really sad to cause I keep trying her books as they sound super cool but then I am let down. 🙁
So this is pretty much just a coming of age story centered around a little bit of supernatural happenings within the strange town of Smiths Hollow. Lauren and Miranda have always been friends but lately Lauren feels as if Miranda is slowing slipping away. Miranda is more into boys than hanging out like they use to and Lauren would rather hang out at the Ghost Tree like they use too.
When Lauren has a vision about two girls being killed by a monster that looks human but has claw like hands it changes things for her. She wants to know what happened. She is also concerned about how things are going with her friend Miranda or if they are still friends at all.
Officer Lopez and his family are new to town and it doesn’t go over well with some of his neighbors, especially the old lady that lives next door. Alex responds to a call from his wife when this same lady finds two dead girls in her yard. It’s really strange to him because it seems that nobody seems to be all that concerned about the dead girls. This prompts him to look into things further.
It had a cool premise but it was just super slow and boring for me even though it didn’t take that long to finish for a book over 400 so it read fast, just I felt like not much happens. I was also not a huge fan of Lauren who seemed super wrapped up in the fact that she had off brand shoes. I know that is probably typical teen things, but I can’t really relate to that as it never bothered me to have off brand things growing up. (I still buy off brand and I am never one to be in style)
I really liked Officer Lopez and his family though and felt bad for them because of that one old lady. Which brings me to something else that bothered me. I am from a small town and I kind of feel like the author portrayal of small towns are that they are racist. Now this is set in 1985 but still I wanted to smack that old lady and often felt like the author tries a bit to much with the racist old lady, like that was her only purpose in the book was to be racist. These are just my feelings.
I also figured out who the bad guy/monster was before I was even halfway through the book so that took a bit of the shock value out of the ending.
I really liked the cursed town aspect and how everyone forgot that girls were being murder not long after it happened, but just not a lot more which I am really sad about. 🙁 I do think I am in the minority according to reviews on goodreads so if it sounds good check it out for yourself, but I can’t really recommend it.