Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Book Review: Diary of the Gone by Ivan Amberlake

Callum Blackwell thinks his life can’t get any worse. But he’s wrong.

Callum is haunted by the dead. The only thing that keeps them away is a diary he has found in the basement of his house.

After he moves to a godforsaken town of Olden Cross, the haunting stops. But one day Callum and his friend Nathan find something terrible.

And then the dead reappear.

Callum’s existence turns into a living hell. Boys and girls Callum’s age start disappearing, and when Callum least expects it, his diary goes missing.

Where can I buy this book? 

FREE ON SMASHWORDS! http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/357868



FREE ON NOOK: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/diary-of-the-gone-ivan-amberlake/1116985976?ean=2940045285513 

FREE ON KOBO! http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/diary-of-the-gone
My review:
*I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review*

Callum is constantly pursued by the ghosts of the dead and the only way to stop them from getting him is to write about them in a strange old diary that he found. In the new quiet town that he lives in, ghosts leave him alone-until the day his friend Nathan shows him something strange in the woods. Now the ghosts of dead children are haunting him day and night and kids from his school are going missing, and Callum is the only one who can solve the mystery.

This was a creepy paranormal story with the 'don't go into the woods' warning to it. The plot was a bit different, which is always a good thing and not easy to do with a paranormal theme. The author's descriptive work is excellent, and you can see exactly what he wants you to see through Callum's eyes, right now to the colours fading from life every time the ghosts are coming. One thing that I have noticed about this author is that his word use is always perfect. The descriptions of the world he is building are always new, not a tired cliche that you have seen in countless other books, and it always seems to fit just right into the story. There is plenty detail about Callum's ghost problems and the diary to let you know what is going on but enough enough to bore the reader. I felt there was a nice balance.

Callum is quite likeable and I felt sorry for him because his sister treats him with such contempt, and the school bully seems to be picking on him for no reason. Nathan is the fun friend who tries to look out for Callum so you warm to him despite his appearance being brief. I didn't feel much of a connection to his other friends, other than Vivian as the book progresses, but it wasn't too vital for the story. Gloria was my favourite character though.

I did have a couple of minor plot niggles. I wanted to see a bit more of Gloria and her back story as she was the one who really fascinated me. I felt that she was a bit underused when she seemed so important to the story. I would have liked the scene in the library to have been longer and more detailed, giving us more about the previous missing kids. I also wish the attack at the school had been longer, along with the big finale. I guess I wanted more of these bits because they were the bits of the book that I liked the best. But these niggles are more about what I wanted to see in the book, and no reflection on the author's writing.

This book should appeal to anyone who enjoys a paranormal story, a creepy horror story or ghost story. I'd give this a 3.5 out of 5. 
star rating photo: 35 star rating 3-5-stars.jpg

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