Saturday, February 21, 2015

Book Review Discussion: Shutter by Courtney Alameda

Book: Shutter by Courtney Alameda
Genre: YA Horror
Rating:★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
For: Review and Support Local Authors
From: Received for free from the publisher through NetGalley. All opinions are my own. I also bought a copy at the book launch! :)

Short Synopsis: Micheline and her crew of ghost hunters are all (well, almost all) descended from a long line of hunters... the Van Helsings, the Stokers and the Drakes. One night, they have to face an entity that gets the better of them, and if they don't figure out how to stop it, their own lives will be over. This story takes place in a week's time while they figure out how to track down and get rid of this particularly troublesome ghost. Meanwhile, it forces Micheline to have to deal with some pretty crappy stuff in her past.

My Response: I loved the characters. Strong, tough, smart and vulnerable. I enjoyed the story, creepy and crazy. But, I must say, I had issues with the technical talk and the descriptions of how this ghost hunting thing was actually going down. There were many spots were I totally could not visualize what these kids were doing! Something with cameras and mirrors! Oh, and guns. There were guns too! I'm told that if I were more into video games, I would have totally gotten it. So, I guess if you are a video gamer, you'll have no problem! So I struggled through the middle but then it got to a certain point where it totally took off and I couldn't put it down until the end. It's filled with lots of crazy creatures, ghosts and otherwise. For those who tend to be queasy, it gets pretty gory in parts and the things that Micheline has to deal with (past family events) are pretty disturbing. 

Bottom Line: Despite the struggle I had with the techno talk,  I did enjoy it for its uniqueness and crazy story telling.

Let's Talk About: I'm going talk about horror in more depth in a future post, but I thought I'd bring it up here too. What does horror mean to you? This book covers the genre really well, using lots of suspense and creepiness, plus scary monsters. I tend to be much more scared by the suspense over the monsters. Suspense and the IDEA of something scary is much more scary than the actual thing. Know what I mean? And I'm fascinated with authors who have the ability to write that. It's amazing. What do you think?

Other Reviews:

It was intense from beginning to end. The characters hardly had any time to rest and I only did because I had to put the book down to sleep! From Jenni Elyse

The strange and dangerous monsters in Shutter are some of the most inventive, dangerous, and seriously creepy creatures that I’ve ever read. From Bewitched Bookworms

The story struck a very good balance between the action-packed fights and the personal struggles of Micheline and her partners. From Ex Libris

There is a bit of forbidden romance, dealing with the guilt of the death of family, the friendship and hierarchy when someone in the group is higher ranking, and dealing with emotions when it is absolutely terrifying to let someone in and let that guard down. From Such a Novel Idea


  1. I still say disturbing creepiness is more horror than scary but that's just me. I sort of play video games maybe I'll get this one if I ever get around to reading it.

  2. I'm glad you still liked it even though you had a hard time with the techno speak. :) And, I think horror can encompass a lot, scary, creepy, gory, paranormal, not paranormal. I think it mostly depends on the feel, but I don't know how to describe it. I just know horror when I encounter it.

  3. I think the best horror is the suspenseful kind, whether or not it has monsters attached to it. The dark cabin in the woods, isolated, you hear a twig snap and the horror level ratchets up, regardless of who or what is out there!



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