The Summoning

Kelley Armstrong, Author . HarperCollins $17.99 (390p) ISBN 978-0-06-166269-0

Chloe, the 15-year-old narrator of this opener in the Darkest Powers trilogy, Armstrong's (Women of the Otherworld series) first YA novel, hasn't seen ghosts since she was a little girl—until the day she finally gets her period and starts seeing ghosts everywhere. Almost immediately Chloe is sent to a small group home, Lyle House, and diagnosed as schizophrenic. Readers will forgive these familiar and even formulaic plot devices, however, given Armstrong's well-timed revelations of paranormal activity at Lyle House. What is the eminently sane Chloe to make of her new peers, especially the antisocial Derek and his foster brother, who offer their own diagnosis—that she is “supernatural” like them? Are they psychotic or scheming to get her in trouble, or could their idea help explain why certain disruptive teens are mysteriously transferred from Lyle, never to be heard from again? Drawing on elements dear to horror lovers (secretly buried corpses, evil doctors, werewolves, telekinesis), Armstrong adds a stylish degree of suspense. The ending, while still a cliffhanger, brings with it a chilling closure. Ages 12–up. (July)

Reviewed on: 06/30/2008
Release date: 07/01/2008
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