Written by Amy Lukavics
Number of pages: 231
Average Rating: 3.56/5 stars
My Rating: 1/5 stars
Published on September 29th 2015
Read in June 2016
Summary according to Goodreads
When sixteen-year old Amanda Verner's family decides to move from their small mountain cabot to the vast prairie, she hopes it is her chance for a fresh start. She can leave behind the memory of the past winter; of her sickly ma giving birth to a baby sister who cries endlessly; of the terrifying visions she saw as her sanity began to slip, the victim of cabin fever; and most of all, the memories of the boy she has been secretly meeting with as a distraction from her pain. The boy whose baby she now carries.
When the Vernes arrive at their new home, a large cabin abandoned by its previous owners, they discover the inside covered in blood. And as the days pass, it is obvious to Amanda that something isn't right on the prairie. She's heard stories of lands being tainted by evil, of men losing their minds and killing their families, and there is something strange about the doctor and his son who live in the woods on the edge of the prairie. But with the guild and shame of her sins weighing on her, Amanda can't be sure if the true evil lies in the land, or deep within her soul.
I hated this novel so very much, it was a pain to finish. Considering it is only slightly more than 200 pages, I struggled to continue reading - it took me many days to actually finish. I did not want to write this review because I only have negative things to say, however I did make a resolution to review every book that I read this year.
It was not scary at all. It took about 100 pages just to actually get to this "haunted" cabin where they mention the blood on the walls, and then move in anyway. So its a bit of a fixer-upper? No big deal to this family of seven. Even after that, there weren't any horrifying things. I saw every plot twist coming, every scary scene that could have happened, every scary scene that could have happened, every strategy that they had to reach a solution.
There were many references to "last winter", but it takes a long time for us to actually figure out what happened. It is not hard to guess the events of winter based on the events of the novel, however it did not build any anticipation and instead just became very annoying. The world building (or lack of) made it hard to put yourself in the story, as there was a strange way of passing time and setting the tone.
This novel was nothing original, nothing captivating, nothing poetic, it was just there. I was bored the entire time I was reading it, and considered giving up many times - I just kept hoping it would get better. The characters were very bland and disconnected, I felt not empathy or emotion for anyone in this story. The main character herself didn't even seem to care about her family, so why should I as a reader?
The only positive thing that I can say is that I liked the cover - it was much scarier than the story was.
Overall, I was extremely disappointed with this novel as I was very excited about the plot. It was a very slow and disengaging read, and I feel as though I am now in a reading slump. Take my review with a grain of salt, because my views are against most opinions. The reviews that I have seen have been fairly positive, so do your research if this is something that interests you!