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Book Review: Music From The Dead by Bebe Faas Rice

Music From The Dead by Bebe Faas Rice is a young adult horror novel originally published in April 1997.  Marnie and her cousin Peter drive up to the mansion that Marnie's father rented for the summer ahead of her father.  When the cousins arrive at the mansion called Stonycraig and settle in, Marnie is nervous because she thought she saw a shadow in one of the windows.  Then, she starts hearing a woman crying late at night.  Are the stories about Stonycraig being haunted true? This is a book I originally read as a teenager, and I remember being impressed by the storyline and writing.  I recently decided to reread it as an adult to see if it was as good as I remembered.  I have to say it was phenomenal.  Well-written and unputdownable.   Even though there were parts that came back to me as I made my way through Music From The Dead , I still found it to be perfectly eerie and creepy.  There was even a little bit of romance but nothing inappropriate for a tween or teen.  The only com

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2) by J.K. Rowling

In the second installment of the Harry Potter book series, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2) by J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter is home for the summer from Hogwarts and is being treated terribly by the Dursleys. Then, receives an unexpected visitor in the way of Dobby, a house elf, who warns Harry to stay away from school or else disaster will strike. When Harry goes back to Hogwarts, everything goes wrong . . . mishap after mishap, and then, students start being turned to stone.

Although Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2) came out in 1998 just after my nineteenth birthday. I don't remember hearing too much about this book or the first book in the series, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1) . . . just some murmurings of children and teens saying how good it was. I don't recall the exact year when I started hearing other people (i.e. adults) talk about the series, but they too were gushing about it. I resisted reading the Harry Potter books for several years because I couldn't believe grown adults were so enchanted with a children's book series. It wasn't until after I joined a book club that I actually picked up the books in the series and binge read them all. By the time I read them all, I was burnt out on them, which probably wouldn't have happened had I read them as they came out.

This edition wasn't one of my favorites in the series. One of the biggest reasons was that I despised the character of Gilderoy Lockhart. I found this particular character completely self absorbed and idiotic. He was so very unlikable. However, I'm not sure if J.K. Rowling meant for him to be unlikable or not. Another reason I disliked the book was because of all the speculating of the students of who the "heir of Slytherin" was and gossiped about it. With that being said, Rowling did a great job of capturing how kids really act in a school setting with their gossiping, which gave the book a feel of realness. Lastly, it was still a little young for me, but Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2) still was engaging enough for me to finish the book.

What I most loved about the book was learning more about the backstory of Hagrid and Voldemort. Although I didn't care about Dobby throughout the majority of the book, I knew his intentions were well meant, and I love that Harry Potter helped him at the end of the story and didn't have any ill will towards Dobby. I think that was one of my favorites parts of the book.

All in all, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets was an enjoyable read that allowed me to escape reality for a bit of time. I gave it three out of five stars


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