Author: Madeleine Roux
Genre: YA // Mystery // Ghosts // Supernatural
Format: Physical Copy
Asylum is a thrilling and creepy photo-novel perfect for fans of the New York Times bestseller Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children.
For sixteen-year-old Dan Crawford, New Hampshire College Prep is more than a summer program—it's a lifeline. An outcast at his high school, Dan is excited to finally make some friends in his last summer before college. But when he arrives at the program, Dan learns that his dorm for the summer used to be a sanatorium, more commonly known as an asylum. And not just any asylum—a last resort for the criminally insane.
As Dan and his new friends, Abby and Jordan, explore the hidden recesses of their creepy summer home, they soon discover it's no coincidence that the three of them ended up here. Because the asylum holds the key to a terrifying past. And there are some secrets that refuse to stay buried.
Featuring found photos of unsettling history and real abandoned asylums and filled with chilling mystery and page-turning suspense, Madeleine Roux's teen debut, Asylum, is a horror story that treads the line between genius and insanity (goodreads).
A creepy ride that doesn't quite answer all of the questions that it poses.
Plot: The title and the promise of a bunch of kids wandering around an old asylum made me pick up this book, regardless of the many negative reviews I've seen on the internet. This book reminded me a bit of Miss. Peregrine in the fact that the novel was accompanied by creepy images, so that made the reading experience more enjoyable. The beginning was full of so many mysteries and I had so many questions that I was excited to see how it all wrapped up. Instead of a conclusion, we get a pseudo-ending in which all the falling action happens within a page or two and all of the storylines are wrapped up in the same amount of pages. It wasn't quite the satisfying ending that I was looking for. :/
Characters: The main character is quite of an enigma, I couldn't really place his personality. Dan seemed to place an importance on education, but mocked others who were more studious than he was. He was kind of a jerk in my opinion. Dan is flanked by his two insta-besties, Abby, the love interest, and Jordan, Abby's insta-gay-best friend. Because the book is so short, their relationship seems to be on fast forward with weird mood swings in the middle (I like you one moment, then I hate you, then I'm sighing and apologizing. Repeat). I think the mood swings had something to do with the ~negative energy~ of the asylum, but the matter was never really acknowledged.
World Building :Asylum gets full points for this section mostly because of the images that were inserted in the novel as well. They were a great companion to the novel and definitely upped the creepy factor. There were images of the asylum, old medical tools and even the old staff. It delivered in the small-town-secret creepiness!
Short N Sweet:Asylum was full of promises in the beginning, but I felt let down as the ending didn't answer most of the questions that it had set up; instead it chose to race through the action and left me with a feeling of dissatisfaction.