Down a Dark Hall

( 91 )

Overview

Why does the exclusive boarding school Blackwood have only four students?

Kit walks the dark halls and feels a penetrating chill. What tterror waits around the next corner?

Suspicious and uneasy about the atmosphere at her new boarding school, fourteen-year-old Kit slowly realizes why she and the other three students at the school were selected.

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Down a Dark Hall

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Overview

Why does the exclusive boarding school Blackwood have only four students?

Kit walks the dark halls and feels a penetrating chill. What tterror waits around the next corner?

Suspicious and uneasy about the atmosphere at her new boarding school, fourteen-year-old Kit slowly realizes why she and the other three students at the school were selected.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780440918059
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 9/28/1990
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Pages: 192
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Lexile: 750L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 4.19 (w) x 6.87 (h) x 0.55 (d)

Meet the Author

Lois Duncan is an acclaimed suspense author for young adults. She has published nearly 50 books for children, including I Know What You Did Last Summer, which was adapted into a highly-successful horror film, and Who Killed My Daughter?, a non-fiction book about the harrowing experience of her daughter's murder.

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Read an Excerpt

It was twelve-thirty--half past midnight--on the eighth day of September, and Kit lay sprawled across the bed, writing a letter to Tracy. She knew it was late to be writing letters. If she had been at home with her light on at this hour her mother would have been rapping at the door, calling in a worried voice, "Kit? Is anything wrong, honey? It's much too late for you to be up."

At Blackwood nobody sounded a lights-off curfew, and Kit was glad. Although she had been at the school for well over a week now and was adjusting well on most counts, she still did not feel at ease at night. The light at the end of the hall had not been fixed--"It's almost impossible to get electricians to come out this far," Madame explained apologetically--and though Kit's own room was often lightened by moonlight, she could not shut out a strange nervousness about the oppressive darkness on the far side of her closed door.

She did not sleep well at Blackwood. She dreamed. She knew that she dreamed, for when she woke in the mornings the feeling of the dreams still clung to the edges of her mind, and yet in most cases she could not remember what they had been. She needed to be very sleepy to turn off the light and settle into slumber, and so she had begun to form the habit of studying and writing letters during the early part of the night.

"Dear Tracy," she wrote now, "I'm sorry to have been so long in writing. I got a note off to Mom the first day here so that she would have mail waiting for her in Cherbourg, and then I got snowed under with schoolwork. The work here is harder than it was in public school, mostly, I guess, because the classes are so small. There are only four of us here--can you believe it? Four students in the entire school! So it's almost like having private tutors. I'm taking math and science from Professor Farley, a dear old goat of a man with a funny little bear --really sweet--and literature from Madame Duret. And piano from Jules! I guess I'd better put a row of exclamation marks--!!!!!!!--to give you an idea of what he looks like. All of a sudden I'm getting interested in music.

"The three other girls here are very different. My favorite is Sandy Mason--she's shy and quiet, but nice, and I've started to stir her up a little with plans to short-sheet the other girls' beds and maybe raid the kitchen one night and bring the food up to the rooms for a midnight feast. Lynda Hannah and Ruth Stark knew each other before. They went to the same prep school last year, and when Ruth's parents decided to switch her to Blackwood, Lynda persuaded her mother to let her change schools too. Ruth is homely but very bright, and Lynda is the opposite, awfully pretty but not much in the brains department. They seem to balance each other.

"I still don't understand how we four were selected. Professor Farley says we have the special attributes the were looking for in their students, but I can't imagine what they might be. We seem to have nothing in common with each other, and I don't see how you could have failed to get accepted if I was. I tried to ask Madame Duret about it, but she only said that she didn't discuss test results.

"I wish I could say I like it here. In a way I do. Everybody's very nice to me, and the classes are interesting. But there's something--I don't know how to put it into words, and you'd probably laugh if I did--but I've got this creepy feeling that something's wrong. I felt it first when we entered the gates and started up the driveway, and I feel it more and more every day, as though--"

Somebody screamed. Somewhere in the blackness on the far side of the door. It was a funny scream, choked off in an instant as though a hand had been pressed suddenly to cover the mouth.

It went through Kit like an electric shock. Her hand jerked, and the pen made a lurch across the page, so that the word "though" ran off the side of the paper.

Pulling herself upright on the bed, she sat, tense and shaken, listening. There was nothing but silence.

But I heard it, she told herself. I know I heard it.

Somewhere in the quiet dormitory someone had shrieked. In pain? In terror? Perhaps only from a nightmare, and yet, perhaps for some other reason. For--help?

I won't, Kit thought. I can't. I just can't open that door and go out there.

And yet, what if one of the other girls were ill? No one screamed without reason. Was someone lying even now in one of the rooms along the hall, wretched with fear or in physical agony, praying that her cry had been heard and would be answered?

Slowly, as though impelled by something other than her own will, Kit got off the bed and crossed the room and opened the door. The terrible blackness of the hall stretched before her, lessened only by the patch of lamplight that fell from her own doorway. Beyond this there was nothing but stillness and dark.

Kit stood with one hand on the door jamb, listening. The only sounds she could hear were the thud of her own heart and the quick, sharp noise of her breathing.

Perhaps I imagined it, she thought. Perhaps I dozed off a little, there on the bed, and dreamed.

And then she heard it--not a scream this time but a little moaning sound, half a sob, half a wail. It seemed to come from the end of the hall where Sandy had her room.

Well, that does it, Kit told herself resignedly. I have to go.

Drawing a deep breath as if in readiness for a dive into icy water, she stood poised for a moment on the edge of the patch of light. Then, bracing herself, she stepped out into the darkness.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 91 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(64)

4 Star

(17)

3 Star

(7)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(2)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 91 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 20, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    THIS IS SUCH A GREAT BOOK!!!

    WOW!!! This is such a great book I did not want to put it down.I read every chance I got, my friends thought I was a different person cause they saw me READING.Lois Duncan is such a good auther all of her books are great.This book got me hooked since i started reading it felt so real sometimes it felt like i was in the room with Kit.if you really want a good book you should get this one!!! :)

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted January 24, 2009

    Blackwood

    I like this book because it's about a girl called, Kit Gordy. Her father had died and her mother had suffered a lot. But then her mom met Dan Rheardon which she got married to. They decided to go around the world for their honeymoon so they had to leave Kit somewhere while they were gone.They took Kit to a private school named, Blackwood. Once they left her there she already had strange feelings about this place, it was old and surrounded by dusty tall gates. Then she met Lynda, Sandy, and Ruth her new classmates.Throughout the whole book spirits little by little start to get inside them which eventually start controlling the girls. These spirits are famous musicians and artists who died and didn¿t have enough time to finish their music notes or paintings. Mme Duret, the woman in charge of Blackwood, gets all the work which she uses to sell them and get money in return. I like this book because it has a lot of mysteries these four girls have to solve. The way these spirits use these girls is pretty clever.Once you start reading this book you won't stop that¿s why I suggest you read this book if you like mystery books.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 3, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Remarkable book.

    It kept me guessing until the very end. Love the creep factor and mystery. If you've read any Lois Duncan book or enjoy a good mystery I recommend this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 11, 2009

    Interesing book

    This book was very interesting. <BR/>I recommend it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted February 24, 2015

    MEMORABLE

    I read this a few years ago and found myself talking about it at a gathering when someone asked me about my favorite books, though I couldn't remember the title. I was looking through my archived Nooks and realized it was this one all along. So glad I found it. (:

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

    Posted October 7, 2014

    Hi

    Wut is this book about????????????????????????????????????????????????PLZ RESPOND

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

    Posted January 31, 2013

    1junebug6

    I could be in the same room as kit

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

    Posted December 30, 2012

    Read me!!!!!

    Ive read this book before an its absolutly amazing!!!!! Absolutly 5 stars ~derp face

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

    Posted October 28, 2012

    such a good nook book

    this book is really descriptive from what i read. I couldnt stop reading it. i sat and sat and sat until finally my alarm scared me this was sooo good and i can wait to finish it.

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

    Posted September 28, 2012

    Amazing.

    I had to read it for school. Just finished it today! I told my teacher I have to finish it TODAY! Just a warning it is a semi cliffhanger. I didnt think it was but my friemd said that it is.

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

    Posted May 24, 2012

    Pretty darn good...

    I've read pretty much read all of Lois Duncan's books and I have to say this book was probably the best out of all of them. (And I can say I didn't enjoy a lot of them.) Creepy and full of suspense. Took off a star because of the ending.

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

    Posted January 10, 2012

    Still as great!

    The same great story, with subtle updates. Bonus author interview at the end.

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

    Posted December 28, 2011

    Down a Dark Hall Rating

    This is an amazing book so far. It is full of fun, adventure, mystery, and few girls dreams coming true in the wrong way. Read this book or you'll be sorry . . .

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

    Posted December 2, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    Chilling!!

    I read this book and I loved it! Apart from R.L. Stine and Christopher Pike, Lois Duncan is a really good author! She makes good books that will have you on the edge of your seat. Down a Dark Hall is a mystery that will keep you wondering whatever happened to them? So I highly recommend this book to young adults and adults.

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

    Posted November 26, 2011

    Fabulously Creepolicious

    It is great i can't stop reading it .

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 2, 2011

    Fabulously creepy

    Even though this is a YA book, it is one of my favorite horror/thrillers. Kit is a terrific protagonist and you feel her fear every second of the book. My biggest issue with this Duncan thriller is that it ends too quickly. I'm a huge Lois Duncan fan and think this would make a terrific film.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 24, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    One book I'm not a fan of.

    I've been a Duncan fan since the 5th grade. I graduated high school in 2009. I had been wanting to read her books again, mainly some newer ones I hadn't read. This... was probably my east favourite out of all the ones I've read from her. I was a little bit bored and by the time I was nearing the end, I skimmed. Sped read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 15, 2009

    ONE WORD--&gt;WOW!!!

    Okay, first off this was a very good book. I personally didn't pick it out...it was one of those books that someone puts in front of there house for someone to take and read....so I took it. It was really strange though because it was the only book they had out and it's not a kinda book I really read. However, I loved it (scary, mystery, realistic, creepy..etc) I was slighty dissappointed by the ending though...it was just one of those books that your like "Nooo!! I want more...I wanna know what happens!! Gosh, and there's no second book" =( lol
    Great book anyway!!!!!! 5 stars!!!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 9, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    Didn't let me sleep!

    I had to read this book during the summer. At the begining I said to myself I'm not reading it and once I read the first chapter I couldn't sleep at night saying i want to know what happens next. I love suspense and I have to say this that the author gave me the goose-bumps in a super cool way.

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

    Posted June 26, 2008

    I read this book in one day!!!!!!

    This is an awesome book to read if you like books that are bone chilling. You will never be able to put it down. This book is about 4 girls who are at a boarding school and some how someone or something is taking over their actions.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 91 Customer Reviews

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