It’s the time of year again when the dead return to earth to play and haunt as they wish, or in other terms it’s Halloween aka All Hallows Eve. I have always had a fondness for Halloween with the spirit of pretending you are something else and what is creepy and scary becomes entertaining; along with ALL THE CANDY. It is also the time of year when “creepy” books are trending and are eager to be read. Books of witches, ghosts, ghouls, monsters, and things that go bump in the night come to mind whenever this season comes around every year. I have never really been into books about paranormal activity, but when author Anne Michaud contacted me about reviewing her book Whispered Echoes, I thought “ eh, why not.”
Alyx has had her fair share of struggle. From losing her family in a ghastly fire, then being shipped off to a mental institution for claiming encounters with her sister’s ghost, life cannot get any worse for Alyx. After risking everything, Alyx escapes with the knowledge that not everything is right at the mental institution, and goes off to seek help from Transcend; the place her mother once considered home. Welcomed with open arms, Alyx is enlisted in the Academy to build her ghost seeing skills in hopes of become a Star Agent like her mother. However, her past has caught up to her and the things she is running from have found her once more. Unable to leave her old friends behind, Alyx must take her new skills and go back to the place she fled to save the ones she loves.
First off let me say that this book is not scary. WOOHOO! I hate scary books, the ones that give me nightmares about the things going on. Mind you, there are plenty of books that will give you nightmares without being about ghosts or procession. Night by Eli Wiesel is a fantastic books but I diffidently dreamed about Nazi’s for two nights coming to get me, it was not a fun week and literally scared the crap out of me. But I am not sure if Anne was trying to make this book a little scary, it wasn’t at all which made me very happy. A book about ghosts and having the ability to detect them doesn’t seem like something I would normally pick up, so I gave this a shot. Paranormal books are not my thing, but hey if they are for you, cool! However this book was… eh. It wasn’t the worst book I have ever read and it wasn’t the best book I have ever read, it was ok. If this book was an ice cream favor, it would be vanilla. Sometimes you want vanilla, but for a book about ghosts, I expected more than vanilla. I wanted something that made my heart beat rise a little, made me jump every once in a while, and even though I do not like scary books, I wanted something exciting to happen. There wasn’t anything that made me jump or get excited about it, the book just went on and on and on. Vanilla. Plain old vanilla.
The story lacked the element of surprise which should be key to writing books dealing with paranormal activities, however there was no excitement or adventure to the story. It was borderline predictable. I kind of knew what was going to happen as it was happening; and I kept reading hoping that the story would have this HUGE plot twist that came out of nowhere; it never came. Besides being predictable, the characters were a bit obnoxious. I really wanted Alyx to be possessed and maybe kill some people, which would have been exciting! But nope… Alyx was a bi-polar, whiny 18-year-old that I wanted to lose. I couldn’t pin her down… one minute she is the victim and everyone should pity her, and then the next chapter she becomes all self-righteous snob who demanded to have things her way. What is she?!?!? She may be one of my least favorite characters I have ever read. She lacked humility where there should have been some, and she could have benefited from the slightest bit of wisdom. I wanted her to fail so that it could knock some sense into her. It is never good when a reader wants the main character to fail, but I did. I desperately was looking for proper character development and some excitement to happen in the book. So much potential, but it lacked the execution to make it a really good paranormal novel. The book ended on a cliff hanger, which will lead to further books and I just hope that this vanilla ice cream will come with some chocolate sauce and whip cream, along with a side of grace and humility for Alyx.
Whispered Echoes falls under the literary genre of “Urban Fantasy”, and this could be a good story for those who are well-developed in the fantasy genre. But those who are newbies like myself I wasn’t impressed. But I do not have much experience of background to fantasy literature so take my review with a grain of salt if you like. I may need to read a little more fantasy to have a grasp of what the genre intakes and what makes a good fantasy novel versus a poor one. I just thought Whispered Echoes was a bit bland on the literature front, there could have been more surprise and element. Also, the characters could also use some rounding out, since they seem a bit two-dimensional. Maybe the improvements with come in later books, and I hope that they do. The story has all the makes of a good fantasy novel, but isn’t quite there yet.
Disclaimer: I was sent Whispered Echoes for free from the author, Anne Michaud for an honest review. This review is of my own work, and I did not copy or refer to any other reviewers/writers/bloggers for this post. All content provided on “A Comfy Chair” is for informational purposes only. I make no representation as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site. I will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information nor for the availability of this information. I will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information.
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