Friday, October 7, 2016

Book Review: The Women in the Walls

Title: The Women in the Walls
Author: Amy Lukavics

Genre: Young Adult | Horror | Mystery
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: September 27, 2016
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher

Lucy Acosta's mother died when she was three. Growing up in a Victorian mansion in the middle of the woods with her cold, distant father, she explored the dark hallways of the estate with her cousin, Margaret. They're inseparable—a family.  
When her aunt Penelope, the only mother she's ever known, tragically disappears while walking in the woods surrounding their estate, Lucy finds herself devastated and alone. Margaret has been spending a lot of time in the attic. She claims she can hear her dead mother's voice whispering from the walls. Emotionally shut out by her father, Lucy watches helplessly as her cousin's sanity slowly unravels. But when she begins hearing voices herself, Lucy finds herself confronting an ancient and deadly legacy that has marked the women in her family for generations (goodreads).

The Women in the Walls was a disappointing follow-up to Daughters unto Devils.
Plot: The Women in the Walls starts with tragedy and only death seems to follow Lucy and her family. The beginning held my attention because it seemed that there was one death after the other with no true connection. When there finally was a connection between two tragic deaths, I found the novel trying to jam two unrelated stories together. The Women in the Walls was very unbalanced; the first act was all mystery and horror while the second act tried to cram as much plot and background down our throats as possible. There wasn't even enough evidence in the first to make the ending sound even somewhat reasonable. 

Characters: All of the characters were flat and unimaginative. Terrible things are happening left and right, but I can't fully believe that the characters feel terror or even alarm. It's really unfortunate because I had high hopes for this book in the beginning, but the characters never really clicked with me nor did any of the reactions strike me as realistic. 

Worldbuilding: I was 100% confused by the world for a good portion of The Women in the Walls, mostly because none of the scenes take place outside of the mansion they live in. I had initially assumed that it took place in the 20th century, given the elegant dress and social parties. But it's not. It's just the modern-day 1%. I often forgot that this wasn't present day until someone mentioned a cellphone or some other kind of technology, but these were used sparingly. Also, another one of my pet peeves is when students don't go to school but talk about doing homework. The world felt bare and not well thought out. There is only so much you can do in a mansion.

Short N Sweet: The Women in the Walls needed to go through another round of edits, but there are some creepy scenes. 


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