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REVIEW

"Armstrong's first foray into the YA arena a success"

Chloe Saunders has always seen ghosts. Of course, she didn't know they were ghosts. After another particularly frightening episode, Chloe's mom decides it's time to move, and that is the last Chloe sees of them.

Fast forward to age 15. Chloe is now living with her maid because her mother has died and her father is too busy working all over the world. She's attending yet another school, but at least this time it's an art school and she's managed to be there for more than one year. It's nice not being the new girl for once. She's your average teenage girl just trying to get through the typical trials of high school -- exams, friends, and boys. When Chloe officially hits puberty and finally starts her period at school and kind of gets asked on a date to the school dance, she thinks life couldn't get any better. Evidently, she's wrong because with the onset of her period, the ghosts come rushing back at her. After having a breakdown at school, Chloe finds herself admitted to Lyle House -- a group home for troubled teens.

Diagnosed as schizophrenic, Chloe vows to the doctors and her family that she's determined to get better. She dutifully takes the medications they give her and tries to ignore the strange phantoms talking to her. After all, if she's schizo, hearing voices isn't all that uncommon -- right? As Chloe slowly gets to know the rest of the teens at Lyle House she begins to question that reasoning. After one of the girls is taken from Lyle House, Chloe begins to have doubts about the group home. Chloe and the rest of the group slowly come to realize that Chloe really isn't crazy -- and neither are they. But why are they all here and who are these doctors that claim they just want to help them to get better? And most importantly, can they really be trusted?

While Kelley Armstrong is a huge presence in the urban fantasy genre, this is her first foray into the YA arena and I must say she does a fine job of it, too. The story is set in the same world as Armstrong's adult urban fantasy series, Women of the Otherworld. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Chloe and riding along while she begins discovering who -- and what -- she really is. Up until she's placed in Lyle House, Chloe had lived a very sheltered, but pampered lifestyle. When she ends up teaming up with some of the residents at Lyle House she's exposed to more than she could imagine is really out in the real world. While there are times that I have to remind myself that Chloe is just a teenager and there's a reason she acts/reacts in certain ways, overall I really enjoyed the book. By the end of the book there is a lot of action happening and I found myself not wanting the story to end, knowing I'd have to wait for the 2nd book, The Awakening, to release months from now. If you are a fan of the ever-growing YA paranormal genre, I recommend this book.

Reviewed by Mippy Carlson
Posted July 19, 2008

SUMMARY

This is the first novel in a new young adult trilogy ("The Darkest Powers") set in the Otherworld universe, but with all new characters.

Chloe Saunders sees dead people. Yes, like in the films. The problem is, in real life saying you see ghosts gets you a one-way ticket to the psych ward. And at 15, all Chloe wants to do is fit in at school and maybe get a boy to notice her. But when a particularly violent ghost haunts her, she gets noticed for all the wrong reasons. Her seemingly crazed behaviour earns her a trip to Lyle House, a centre for 'disturbed teens'. At first Chloe is determined to keep her head down. But then her room mate disappears after confessing she has a poltergeist, and some of the other patients also seem to be manifesting paranormal behaviour. Could that be a coincidence? Or is Lyle House not quite what it seems...? Chloe realizes that if she doesn't uncover the truth, she could be destined for a lifetime in a psychiatric hospital. Or could her fate be even worse...? Can she trust her fellow students, and does she dare reveal her dark secret?

Genre: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult, Teen

 

The Summoning
(Darkest Powers: Book 1)
by Kelley Armstrong

HarperTeen
July 1, 2008
Available: July 3, 2008
ISBN #0061662690
EAN #9780061662690
320 pages
Hardcover
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Other Books by
Kelley Armstrong

Spell Bound
The Gathering
Counterfeit Magic
Evolve: Vampire Stories of the New Undead
Kisses from Hell
Waking the Witch
The Reckoning
Tales of the Otherworld
The Reckoning
Angelic
Frostbitten
The Eternal Kiss: 12 Vampire Tales of Blood and Desire
The Awakening
A Fantasy Medley
Made to Be Broken
Men of the Otherworld
Living with the Dead
Blood Lite
Personal Demon
My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon
Many Bloody Returns
No Humans Involved
Broken
Dates From Hell
Haunted
Industrial Magic
Dime Store Magic
Stolen
Bitten
Bitten


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