Dharma has moved into a creepy old mansion with her mother, a ghost hunter. Used to staging stories of hauntings, Dharma isn't prepared to face the spooky happenings of the house and the near by swamp. On arriving, her little brother runs off and she follows, diving into the swamp thinking he has fallen in. Once in the house, the handsome boy that works in the gardens, Wolf, notices that Dharma looks a bit ill, and though a trip to the doctors ensues, that doesn't seem to solve any of the problems, and its down to her and Wolf to break the curse.
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Some of the scenes in this book could have come straight out of a horror film! Particularly looking at the nursery scene, which was crazily creepy. Though saying that, I thought that the book got slightly less creepy as it went on, probably because the reader found out what was happening rather than anything else. Its probably a good thing, or some readers may have been left shaking in their boots!
It was odd to have such an upbeat ending to this kind of book though. Most of the paranormal horrors that I have read have included a pretty bleak ending (mainly looking at the Black Adagio here, I think the ending of that book was even more bleak than the ending on 1984!). So if you're wanting an entry book into the genre then this will be a good one for you.
This is one of those books that has a surprisingly small cast of characters (ignoring extremely minor characters my count is 6, and one of those is a toddler!) and it worked well. Many more and I think that the suspense of the plot would have suffered, because that was this books strong point. Suspense rather than characters. Though I'm a character person, I found that the detailed settings and the suspense were actually quite a draw!
This review is a part of the Blog Tour that trips down imagination road is doing on behalf of Clean Teen Publishing (and a big thanks to them for it!) Check out the other books offered by Clean Teen Publishing on their website, and don't forget to check out the other reviews I am doing for them this week!
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RIVER OF BONES
By Angela J. Townsend
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Young Adult Horror - Romance
When seventeen-year-old Dharma Moore moves to Bayou country so her scam artist mother can work as a Paranormal Investigator, she discovers that more than ghosts haunt the abandoned plantation they now call home.
Centuries ago, a voodoo curse was placed on the swamp waters surrounding the old plantation by a murdered slave. This terrible curse ensnares Dharma with its deadly effects. To save herself, she must face the terror of the haunted waters, find the dead woman's skull, and convince the slave's soul to release her from its torments. When Dharma discovers an ancient secret that links her to the property—a secret kept from her by her own family—she realizes that the curse is more personal to her than she ever imagined.
To survive, Dharma must accept the help of the locals, and put her trust in the handsome gardener, Wolf Bodine—who is the only one crazy enough to come near the plantation. With his help, Dharma must learn to embrace the truth and accept that magic is not only real… but that it can be very, very deadly!
Guest Post- REAL LIFE EXPERIENCE:
I love to write about the supernatural. Ghosts and witches and even a goblin or two always seem to sneak into my writing.
I have lived in two haunted houses, traveled into the darkest regions of southern swamps and even fought off an alligator or two. All of these experiences have helped me to write my novel, River of Bones. And if you like a scary southern gothic story filled with local myth and lore than this creepy novel is a perfect read for you!
My real experience with haunted houses happened when I lived on a historic farm. If you pressed your ear against a far wall--you could literally hear whispering and crazy sounding laughter. On the other side of that wall was a simple flower garden. There was no reason to hear any noise from that wall.
We called in a paranormal team to and explore the house, The investigators claimed it was haunted by the prior owners who had died in the early 1900’s and were buried in the garden.
I was horrified that dead people might be underneath my radishes and tomatoes plants! The very next day I hurried outside with my shovel and starting looking for gravestones. I scooped out shovels of dirt and dug for nearly a whole day and never found anything. Not even a piece of headstone.
Later that summer on a smoldering day a car drove into the yard. Out stepped an older gentleman. I was packing my bags because we had found a house in town and frankly I was tired of all the creepy things that were happening in the house. The man walked up and shook my hand. He told me that he was the grandson of the original owners. I quickly asked him all the things I wanted to know about the house. He was very polite and after a cup of lemonade in the shade I had learned that his grandparents had both died suddenly of unknown causes. Before he left he tipped his hat back and said. “You know my grandparents are buried here don’t you?”
“Where?” I asked quickly.
“Over in the garden.”
I shook my head. “That just can’t be. I’ve searched the garden. There aren’t any headstones.”
“Oh,” he said. “Not that garden.” He pointed to a rosebush on the side of the house near where we could hear the voices. “They’re in the flower garden!”
The hair rose up on my neck and needless to say the paranormal investigators were right. There were dead people under my tulips. We moved out that same night and never looked back. I’ve always wondered what those voices were saying. Perhaps they were telling me the tales that went into my novel, River of Bones….
About Angela J. Townsend
Angela Townsend was born in the beautiful Rocky Mountains of Missoula, Montana. As a child, Angela grew up listening to stories told by her grandparents, ancient tales and legends of faraway places. Influenced by her Irish and Scottish heritage, Angela became an avid research historian, specializing in Celtic mythology. Her gift for storytelling finally led her to a full time career in historical research and writing. A writer in local community circulations, Angela is also a published genealogical and historical resource writer who has taught numerous research seminars. Currently, Angela divides her time between writing, playing Celtic music on her fiddle, and Irish dancing.
Angela's first novel, Amarok, was published through Spencer Hill Press in 2012. Her newest novel, Angus MacBain and The Island of Sleeping Kings, was signed for publication with Clean Teen Publishing in 2013.
Angela resides on a ranch, in rural Northwestern Montana, with her two children Levi and Grant.