Friday, August 03, 2012

The White Devil by Justin Evans

Set in a four-hundred-year-old boys' boarding school in London, a chilling gothic thriller by the author of the critically acclaimed A Good and Happy Child . .

A young man's fight for his life . . .
The Harrow School is home to privileged adolescents known as much for their distinctive dress and traditions as for their arrogance and schoolboy cruelty. Seventeen-year-old American Andrew Taylor is enrolled in the esteemed British institution by his father, who hopes that the school's discipline will put some distance between his son and his troubled past in the States. But trouble—and danger—seem to follow Andrew. When one of his schoolmates and friends dies mysteriously of a severe pulmonary illness, Andrew is blamed and is soon an outcast, spurned by nearly all his peers. And there is the pale, strange boy who begins to visit him at night.

Either Andrew is losing his mind, or the house legend about his dormitory being haunted is true. When the school's poet-in-residence, Piers Fawkes, is commissioned to write a play about Byron, one of Harrow's most famous alumni, he casts Andrew in the title role.

Andrew begins to discover uncanny links between himself and the renowned poet. In his loneliness and isolation, Andrew becomes obsessed with Lord Byron's story and the poet's status not only as a literary genius and infamous seducer but as a student at the very different Harrow of two centuries prior—a place rife with violence, squalor, incurable diseases, and tormented love affairs.

When frightening and tragic events from that long-ago past start to recur in Harrow's present, and when the dark and deadly specter by whom Andrew's been haunted seems to be all too real, Andrew is forced to solve a two-hundred-year-old literary mystery that threatens the lives of his friends and his teachers—and, most terrifyingly, his own.

The 411 by Maria:
Before kids, I was a big fan of Stephen King and read everything by him and authors in the same genre. A Stephen King quote on the cover and I was in! Soooo...I really wanted to like this book.

It took me over two weeks to read which kinda tells me that I wasn't really into it. I like the idea of Andrew, an American being sent to a rich boarding school and I like the idea of a ghost haunting the school but I didn't connect with the story at all.

There were moments when I thought, ahhh finally, I like this..things are getting better but it just never got there for me. I appreciate the fact that the story incorporates the non-fictional Lord Byron and his life at Harrow School and mashups of reality with fiction are interesting to me but I can't put my finger on what would have made this better for me which is why I have always referred to myself as the Amateur Book Reviewer because really, what do I know.

What I did like was the ghost hunt and the visions of the ghost and his ability to give people a life threatening disease. Creepy and a little disturbing.

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book for my honest opinion. No monetary compensation was received.

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