Monday, June 15, 2015

YA Review: Shutter

Shutter (Shutter, 1) by Courtney Alameda, February 3, 2015. 384 pages. Published by  Feiwel & Friends. Source: publisher.
Micheline Helsing is a tetrachromat—a girl who sees the auras of the undead in a prismatic spectrum. As one of the last descendants of the Van Helsing lineage, she has trained since childhood to destroy monsters both corporeal and spiritual: the corporeal undead go down by the bullet, the spiritual undead by the lens. With an analog SLR camera as her best weapon, Micheline exorcises ghosts by capturing their spiritual energy on film. She's aided by her crew: Oliver, a techno-whiz and the boy who developed her camera's technology; Jude, who can predict death; and Ryder, the boy Micheline has known and loved forever.

When a routine ghost hunt goes awry, Micheline and the boys are infected with a curse known as a soulchain. As the ghostly chains spread through their bodies, Micheline learns that if she doesn't exorcise her entity in seven days or less, she and her friends will die. Now pursued as a renegade agent by her monster-hunting father, Leonard Helsing, she must track and destroy an entity more powerful than anything she's faced before . . . or die trying.

Lock, stock, and lens, she’s in for one hell of a week.
First Sentence:
Call it reaper's insomnia, but the dead wouldn't let me sleep at night.



I had such high hopes for Shutter! Hopes that it would be terrifying and sleep with the lights on scary! Sadly, this book was not the least bit scary. It wasn't even chilling. Fascinating as it was, it was just missing the entire fear factor that I was looking for.

I'm not saying it was a bad book, it just failed to live up the hype of scariness that it laid claim to. I'm really starting to think there is just no book out there that is truly worthy of being called a horror read; I'd personally peg this was as more of a supernatural thriller. The story-line's interesting and the writing was good, though.

What kept me reading Shutter would have to be that I was curious about how they went about trapping ghosts and demons. It was perhaps the most interesting part of the book because it was so unexpected and different. The way Micheline was able to capture them on film, versus others who trapped them in mirrors, was pretty cool and definitely had me interested as she had to adapt her game to go toe to toe with a new threat.
  Also, the whole Helsing and Stoker thing was pretty cool since you know I happen to like things that can take new angles on their story-lines. It was highly interesting to see things play out.

Even though I liked the diversity between the characters and how different they were from one another, there were times when I just did not like them. What I liked about them, as a group, was how well they worked together to confront the danger of the soulchains.

Courtney Alameda's writing was really enjoyable as I was swept away into the dark vision of San Francisco. What really made this an interesting read was the mystery behind the death of her mother (I cannot say more because of spoilers) and the longstanding enmity between the Helsing family and that of, you guessed it, a certain vampire. I really, really enjoyed both of those angles of the book because it was so different and well done.

I would like to note: contrary to what was mentioned in Shutter, rosaries are generally not worn about the neck like jewelry. Should this book pique your interest though, you can learn how to pray the rosary and see how it helps the faithful to remember salvation history.

Final Verdict: Shutter- In my book, this is a good read. It could have been scarier, but, I enjoyed the way the plot played out.

Shutter earns

this book was received in exchange for an honest review

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