Thursday, March 9, 2017

Harmony House

Yesterday a book came through in our ILL bag that was supposed to go back to the high school, but as soon as I saw it, I needed to check it out to myself.

I just finished Daughters Unto Devils by Amy Lukavics, and this book was a great follow up. It has the same central theme of pregnancies and the Devil/demons, so I kind of forgot that this book was by a different author.

Harmony House has a great assortment of horror staples: Gothic house, suicides, evil priest and nuns, an institute that's abusive to those under its care (like orphanages, asylums, in this case it's a home for unwed mothers), and some kind of evil presence that's not quite understood by seemes to be the Devil or demons. The protagonist is seventeen year old Jen, who moves to the house with her father to be caretakers following the death of her mother. Based on that descriptor, you might expect a Casper type scenario, you know the 1995 film starring young Christina Ricci and a delightful, fatherly Bill Pullman:

But Jen's father Anselm is not nearly as charming or likable as Dr. Harvey; he's a religious fanatic with a dark connection to the house. He cares more about "saving her soul" rather than helping her heal or trying to find some happiness in her new town, and Jen clearly has very little sentiment for her father, frequently calling him a barrage of unflattering names in her head and under her breath. Truthfully, I did tire a little of her constant swearing, not because it offended me, just because after a while it didn't seem necessary. The character was already established as a cynical, jaded teenager and her thoughts about her father and his beliefs were also already clear.

This is another horror book that I read in a single day- yesterday evening I read more than half of it, and then around 3:00 this morning I woke up and couldn't get back to sleep, so I ended up finishing it. I looked the author up, and found out that this is his first horror novel, which disappointed me a little because I thought I'd have more of his books to look forward to, but this was definitely worth a day of reading.

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