Thursday, October 21, 2010

Book Review: The House of Dead Maids

TITLE: The House of Dead Maids
AUTHOR: Clare B. Dunkle
CATEGORY: young adult
GENRE: horror, fiction rewrite
PREMISE: Tabby gets sent to Seldom House to be a maid. While encountering a savage little boy she also uncovers deadly secrets about what happened to the previous maids...
MY REVIEW: My first reaction to this idea was actually excitement. I mean come on, a ghost story set in the world of Wuthering Heights which is practically tailor made for a horror story angle? Awesome right?
Unfortunately, the book wasn't as neccessarily awesome as I'd have hoped. It's not bad or anything. It's actually fairly decent and could have been a whole lot worse. But really all the reader gets out of this is a wee little snippet into Heathcliff's childhood via a maid. Now I do not recall if Tabby is actually a character in WH (sorry, it's been YEARS since I've read Wuthering Heights) or is just a made up insert by the author. But it doesn't seem terribly important as this story is so short and quick that I have to wonder what the point of it is. Insight to Heathcliff? Not really, he barely features into the book.
Now I will say, it captures the creepyness and tone of Wuthering Heights perfectly. The writing is sound, and there are some interesting ideas bouncing around in it. But it didn't really have me super excited you know? Quickly as the story started, it ended leaving me wondering what the point was. Really all the short book acomplished was making me actually want to read Wuthering Heights again (I haven't wanted to reread it since high school so I do give Dunkle credit for that). So not a bad book. Just not a super awesome one either. It's just sort of there.
WHO SHOULD READ: Wuthering Heights fans
MY RATING: Three out of Five cloth dolls

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