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Dead End Street Kindle Edition
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Top customer reviews
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Reading this I thought it would be about ghosts but it actually turned into a mystery which about halfway through the book it picked up speed.
Very well written and the author pulled me right into the book keeping me glued to the pages to the end. Five star read for this one.
The Tuttle house sits abandoned on a dead end street away from other homes. It’s falling apart around itself as it hasn’t been lived in in over fifteen years. Fifteen years ago, a family was brutally murdered in the house and the killer and murder weapon have never been found. The parents and their four-year-old daughter Stacey didn’t survive that night. Stacey’s older brother Paul, fifteen at the time, disappeared and has not been seen since before the murders. Local legend says that Paul committed the murders against his family and took off, never to be seen or heard from again. The house, as I state above, hasn’t been lived in for all that time and the once lovely home that set at the end of the street is now anything but. No one goes into the Tuttle house because there’s talk of it being haunted. Teens have tried over the years but have all run out screaming. There’s talk of some never coming out again. What better place to hold the meetings for the Horror Club than a house rumored to be haunted? Of course all of Peter’s friends are scared to go near the old house, much less spend time inside, but they all agree to the once a week meetings for the storytelling. Who wants to look scared in front of their friends?
The first story goes well, but the group hears a sound here and there that may or may not be coming from upstairs. They get out quick but come back for the next story the following week. Each week there are different sounds – sounds that surprisingly coincide with whatever story has just been told. From the howling of what sounds like a werewolf to a woman’s scream. The kids now know that there is more to the house than just talk. After spending time inside on and off for weeks, they are all convinced that it’s haunted. David convinces them to continue until each story has been told, coming up with this excuse or another for the sounds heard inside the house. David is the most competitive of the group and to this reader, the most brave. This depends on how you look at David. David lives in a home with a father who pushes him to the point where he feels that if he ever stops anything midway, that he’s a failure. So David does something that he knows he shouldn’t do. He goes into the house alone without his friends. He does this many times and discovers there’s more to the place than creaky steps and broken windows. There’s someone inside the house. What happens when he comes face to face with that person and there’s no one around to help him? Who is the person? Is it Paul Tuttle, the son and brother of those killed a decade and a half ago? Or is it someone – or some thing – even more sinister than an assumed murderer?
This is not a romance, nor is it a LGBT story. It’s a YA book about five teens who get caught up in something dangerous by doing what teens tend to do… breaking the rules. While I don’t normally review YA books on On Top Down Under, I do review Rick R. Reed books on there, and Dead End Street is perfect for all ages. Had this been written by anyone else, I might not have expected the major creep factor that I found in this book. With it written by this author, I knew beyond doubt that the horror would be there and that it would be the perfect story.
This is more than just a story about five teens who tell ghost stories. One, the ghost stories told are stories in themselves and all very entertaining and more than a little creepy. Two, this is also a suspenseful mystery. What happened to Paul Tuttle when his family was murdered all those years ago? Is he the one inside the house scaring the group? What happens when David ventures in alone and gets caught in a situation he may not be able to get out of?
Overall, another great book by one of my favorite authors. I discovered Rick R. Reed way back when while looking for horror. I have since read so many of his books – both horror and romance – that I lost count. It’s become kind of a tradition for me to read one of his horror stories around Halloween. I picked the perfect one with Dead End Street. The ending is perfect and not at all what I was expecting.
Review also published at ontopdownunderbookreviews.com.
The kids decide to use the empty house as the site for a "Halloween Horror Club," in which each of the five members tries to top the last in telling a chilling tale to the group. The format works well, because not only do you have the larger story, but five individual ones, so fans of horror shorts should enjoy this as well. As the group meets, it becomes apparent that they are not the only ones in the house. What begins as a scary mystery, explodes into a cat and mouse game: kids versus, well...whatever inhabits the house. The story is brisk enough to avoid becoming bogged down in unnecessary side plots, and takes a few twists right up until the end. The book was a total nod to the young adult horror classics of the last twenty or thirty years, and I appreciated the focus on chills and suspense, rather than all-out gore; I suppose a lot of young readers prefer the gory stuff, but give this a chance if you enjoy a nice creepy atmosphere and mystery.
As I listened to the audio version of the book, I'll end with comments on that. Narrator Rish Outfield does a fine job with the material, giving each of the characters a distinct personality and adding appropriate suspense and jolts when needed, without getting too carried away. A narrator can make or break an audiobook, and Outfield was a good choice for Reed's novel. It's nice to see that newer technologies are being utilized to make more authors available in audiobook format. Here's hoping more of Rick R. Reed's titles will be offered in this format.
The individual horror stories that the friends come up with are all pretty good and that novelty carries us through the first half of the novel, providing a wonderful sense of creepy atmosphere. I was very impressed by the author's ability to create five vivid characters with distinct personalities without bogging the novel down with too much description or back story.
When the friends begin to sense that something is wrong in the house, beyond its disturbing history, there is a bit of stupid horror movie character behavior. Although it's mostly on the part of one character -- the others have more sense. But I liked the way everyone banded together to help each other, rather than running around screaming and getting picked off one by one, the way most horror stories tend to go.
A very nice horror story with great atmosphere!