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Help For The Haunted (2013)


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LocationCall NumberItem Status
FictionFICTION/SEARLES,JDue 06-29-18
Published: New York : William Morrow, [2013]
Edition:  First edition
Description:  362 pages ; 24 cm
ISBN/ISSN: 9780060779634, 0060779632 :,
Language:  English

Related Searches:
Parents -- Fiction. -- Death
Ghost stories.
Detective and mystery fiction.
Added--201308 afic

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Help for the Haunted

I absolutely loved this book! It scared me half to death without any real horror.

It is the story of a 14-year-old girl named Sylvie Mason who is trying to solve the mystery of the murder of her parents, who were demonologists. She is currently in the neglectful custody of her spiteful, nasty, older sister, Rose. The questions this book brings up are:

1. Who killed the Masons and why? The main suspect is a homeless man whose daughter was supposedly exorcised by the Masons and even left her father to move in with them for awhile. He was at the church where the Masons were murdered, the night of the murder, and has been in custody ever since.
2. Why has Sophie's older sister Rose become so spiteful and rebellious for the last several years? She is also a suspect of the murder in Sylvie's eyes. Sylvie has been lying to the police about Rose's whereabouts the night of the murder for a year.
3. Did the Masons really have paranormal abilities or was it just a scam?
4. Is the creepy, supposedly possessed doll who now lives in a cage in their basement responsible for all the strange noises down there? Were her parents able to exorcise it or not? Will Sylvie get enough courage to go into the basement and look?
5. Why does Rose, who is now her legal guardian, forbid her to go down into the basement?

The author has a great talent for building tension and setting a very chilling, eerie mood. I highly recommend reading this in the dark, on a device!

Perfect Level of Creepy

Let me start by saying that I don’t like to be scared. I was 14 the last time I watched a horror movie and A Nightmare on Elm Street truly did give me nightmares for a week. So I am a bit of a wimp when it comes to the horror genre. Help for the Haunted, however, provided just the perfect level of creepy without venturing into Jason Vorhees jumping out of a closet territory.

In Help for the Haunted, Sylvie Mason’s parents have an unusual occupation—helping “haunted souls” find peace. After receiving a strange phone call one winter’s night, they leave the house and are later murdered in an old church in a horrifying act of violence. And while the Mason’s story is firmly rooted in the supernatural world, this truly is a coming of age story.

Sylvie and Rose Mason are compelling characters whose struggles with finding their place in their family and in their world are written in an authentic and relatable way. From the moment Sylvie and Rose’s parents are killed, I was invested in this story. I felt like a detective who was finding clues and needed to keep going to help these two lost girls. Each new clue added layers that deepened the mystery and revealed the secrets that the family members had hidden away within themselves. While all of the clues didn’t add up perfectly, the story is eminently entertaining and readable with characters that you can’t help but root for. Don’t wait for Halloween! Read it now.
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