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Darkhouse: Book One in the Experiment in Terror Series

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

25 out of 31 people found this review helpful.

Humorous Spook Fest!

I started this book on a chilly Pacific Northwest afternoon and read until 3 am. I didn't anticipate getting hooked, but the pacing created an irresistible page-turner that had me reading until my eyes ached. Who needs sleep? Sleep is over-rated! Darkhouse is seduct...
I started this book on a chilly Pacific Northwest afternoon and read until 3 am. I didn't anticipate getting hooked, but the pacing created an irresistible page-turner that had me reading until my eyes ached. Who needs sleep? Sleep is over-rated! Darkhouse is seductively entertaining and I'm convinced that it has some secret ingredient (like the sauce on a Big Mac or the coffee beans at Starbucks) that makes it immediately addictive. Red Fox is coming out soon and I simply can't wait (okay, maybe I'm begging a little) for the author to send me an advanced copy. What makes it so good? Perry is a reliable character: flawed, insecure, impulsive, but despite her own roadblocks she has a determination that the audience can clearly see even if she does not (yet). It is her self-awareness that makes the character appealing, trustworthy and honest. Her vulnerability provides sympathy without demanding pity. Dex is similar and it is not surprising that the Clown Lady insinuates Perry and Dex are cut from the same cloth. Their contradictions show strength of character and reveals a great deal about the individuals. For example, Dex admits he lies and by doing so disproves he's a liar because he confesses to the deceit. A true liar would never willingly reveal this deprecating detail.

The paranormal elements and spook factor are unique and provide just enough to let the imagination create the setting without coming across as silly, immature or easy to dismissed. The creepiness I experienced was real and I loved the lighthouse scenes. The splattering mentions of pop culture references were excellent and worked to create a mental map of the characters perception and thinking. I knew where they were coming from, what images came to mind during their experiences, and how they related to the world unfolding in front of them.

Frankly, I'm surprised by the lower ratings received at places such as Goodreads because this contemporary humorous spook fest might read fast-paced and easy, which it does, but the voice is not absent of substance. The language doesn't try too hard to convince intelligence and by doing so, is smartly composed to do what a story should, entertain. Don't get me wrong, there is meaning here, but the fact that the story isn't trying so hard to show (or prove it) makes it that much more clever. Darkhouse is an example of a confident and assured author's 'voice.' The writer connects with the characters, deeply understanding and channeling them onto the page. By the end I was convinced Perry was writing this story. I have no doubt that Perry and Dex are real--and they live through author Karina Halle.

posted by ccourtland on February 24, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

When I started reading this book I wasn't really sure what to ex

When I started reading this book I wasn't really sure what to expect. I couldn't find a proper synopsis of the novel so I walked into this story knowing only one thing; ghost would be involved. I honestly am a sucker for a ghost story so I jumped on board this blog tou...
When I started reading this book I wasn't really sure what to expect. I couldn't find a proper synopsis of the novel so I walked into this story knowing only one thing; ghost would be involved. I honestly am a sucker for a ghost story so I jumped on board this blog tour with excitement. While this novel does start off rather slow, once the story kicks off it turns out to be pretty good. This story is told from first person point of view, adding mystery to the story, and giving readers a look into the mind of Perry.

Perry the leading lady has a less than perfect body type (so she claimed), a witty personality, and she was borderline manic. I enjoyed all those qualities about her, and I found her relatable as a character. Now I did enjoy her having insecurities, but I wish she would have been a little bit more confident or gained confidence as the story went on, this could be something that develops as the series progresses. I just happen to be one of those crazy female readers who loves the leading woman to be strong, and ready to take on the world.

The thing I enjoyed most about this story is the creepiness of it. Karina Halle does a great job of giving you as the reader the ebbie jeebies. Halle also has a great writing style making it easy for readers to get sucked into the story. I saw something beautiful, dark, and creative about her writing style and I loved it. Just to give a quick example of her writing style so you can understand what I mean, check out the example below.

"Only it's my life turned infinitely more interesting, like every step I take, every puddle I splash or pair of eyes I meet has more meaning that normal."

Amazing right?



I am interested to see where this series goes, I definitely want to keep reading because I want to find out how these characters develops. I recommend this book to scifi, horror, and paranormal lovers.

posted by Book-Whore on April 17, 2012

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  • Posted April 17, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    When I started reading this book I wasn't really sure what to ex

    When I started reading this book I wasn't really sure what to expect. I couldn't find a proper synopsis of the novel so I walked into this story knowing only one thing; ghost would be involved. I honestly am a sucker for a ghost story so I jumped on board this blog tour with excitement. While this novel does start off rather slow, once the story kicks off it turns out to be pretty good. This story is told from first person point of view, adding mystery to the story, and giving readers a look into the mind of Perry.

    Perry the leading lady has a less than perfect body type (so she claimed), a witty personality, and she was borderline manic. I enjoyed all those qualities about her, and I found her relatable as a character. Now I did enjoy her having insecurities, but I wish she would have been a little bit more confident or gained confidence as the story went on, this could be something that develops as the series progresses. I just happen to be one of those crazy female readers who loves the leading woman to be strong, and ready to take on the world.

    The thing I enjoyed most about this story is the creepiness of it. Karina Halle does a great job of giving you as the reader the ebbie jeebies. Halle also has a great writing style making it easy for readers to get sucked into the story. I saw something beautiful, dark, and creative about her writing style and I loved it. Just to give a quick example of her writing style so you can understand what I mean, check out the example below.

    "Only it's my life turned infinitely more interesting, like every step I take, every puddle I splash or pair of eyes I meet has more meaning that normal."

    Amazing right?



    I am interested to see where this series goes, I definitely want to keep reading because I want to find out how these characters develops. I recommend this book to scifi, horror, and paranormal lovers.

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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