Monday, April 4, 2016

Dream House ~ Marzia Bisognin (earc) review [@MarziaPie @KeywordsPress @AtriaBooks]

Dream House: A Novel by CutiePieMarzia
Atria/Keywords Press
April 05, 2016
224 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depository/or Amazon

From YouTube sensation Marzia “CutiePieMarzia” Bisognin comes a debut young adult paranormal thriller about a girl whose dream house quickly becomes a nightmare.

When Amethyst stumbles upon the house of her dreams, she can’t help but be enchanted by it, even if there’s something a little…off about the place.

It’s everything she’s ever wanted in a home, so when the Blooms invite her to stay the night to avoid an impending storm, she instantly accepts.

Yet when she awakes the next morning, alone and unable to bring herself to leave, Amethyst comes face-to-face with unexpected twists and turns—like Alfred, the creepy gardener; Avery, the handsome but secretive neighbor, and a little girl who keeps appearing and vanishing within the house.

As Amethyst searches for the Blooms and tries to unravel the truth, her connection to the house only grows stronger. Will she be able to break free of the house’s allure, or will its secrets keep her trapped forever?
I am not sure just how I feel about Dream House. I liked how it began, with the description of the house by our character (yes, her name's in the description, but isn't in the book for quite a bit). The contrast between the vivid, complete description of the house and its surroundings and the little we know of our character was interesting.

That sort of detached narration - where we know what our character is doing and some of her questions about the situation, but not really her emotions or who she is - both worked and didn't work for me. I liked the way it really made you wonder why she was staying in the house. What was it that seemed to be keeping her there, why was she so quickly comfortable not only being there but settling in, and why didn't it seem to even phase her that she was staying days in these strangers' house? I wanted there to be some big twist, some revelation of what the cause of it all was.

Right about half way through, there were, what seemed to be, some very heavy handed hints dropped as to what was going on. It pretty much told me, without (I think) that being the goal, what was what. I kept reading because I wasn't sure if it did, as I though, apply to our main character or if there would be something more to it.

The ending was disappointing to me. It just sort of happened. Which is not to say that it was unexpected, more that it felt uneventful. I was left wondering if that was really it. Maybe I saw too much of it coming or maybe I was waiting for more revelations, either way I wanted something more.

There really wasn't a connection with the main character, but I thought it played into the mystery, the feeling of the novel and that neither she nor you, the reader, know what's going on. The writing style does add to the suspense. I liked some of the writing and the descriptions, as well. It was unclear if some of the discrepancies were purposeful parts of the story or not, but I think they were. I kept waiting for something bigger, something grander to be at play. I did not love this book but there was something there that I liked, with the writing and the style.

digital copy received, for review, from publisher via NetGalley

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