Anyway, it's time for another one of my older favorites to make its appearance here! This time, I've chosen Alexandra Sokoloff's chilling and atmospheric debut, The Harrowing. I have to say, when I first heard about this book I just absolutely had to have it. I'm a sucker for all things horror, especially debuts. This is one of the best by far.
Now first off, I have to say that I have been lucky enough since reading this and Sokoloff's second book, The Price, to actually meet the author. She was at Left Coast Crime this year and she was one of many authors I was just thrilled to finally see in person. She spoke on the "Where Stories Come From" panel where she admitted that she is not a self-described horror author. In fact, I would agree with her that her titles are more inclusive than simple horror. Sokoloff tackles many issues in her stories, but in a world of growing subgenres and cross-overs, the simple fact is this: ultimately her books give me chills (not many do these days) and The Harrowing is a pretty damn creepy and original take on a classic ghost story.
Here's a bit about the book:
It is Thanksgiving break at Baird College and everyone is returning home for the holiday. Everyone, that is, but five misfits in Mendenhall dorm. They are a jock, a brain, a loner, a musician, and a phony. These five have one thing in common though - each one of them feels like they don’t belong. When the teens discover an old Oija board in the common room, they awaken a new entity in Mendenhall. This ghost calls itself Zachary and is all at once charming and terrifying. Who is Zachary and what does he want? As the teens dig deeper into this mystery they come to realize that Zachary is not what he seems. Alexandra Sokoloff’s debut is a hauntingly original and eerie spin on the standard ghost story.
Sokoloff is a fresh new talent in the literary world regardless of where you want to shelve her. Her stories are original and engaging and perfect for a great rainy day of reading!