Small Spaces #2

Dead Voices by Katherine Arden

Publication Date: August 27, 2019

Summary from NetGalley:

Having survived sinister scarecrows and the malevolent smiling man in Small Spaces, newly minted best friends Ollie, Coco, and Brian are ready to spend a relaxing winter break skiing together with their parents at Mount Hemlock Resort. But when a snowstorm sets in, causing the power to flicker out and the cold to creep closer and closer, the three are forced to settle for hot chocolate and board games by the fire.

Ollie, Coco, and Brian are determined to make the best of being snowed in, but odd things keep happening. Coco is convinced she has seen a ghost, and Ollie is having nightmares about frostbitten girls pleading for help. Then Mr. Voland, a mysterious ghost hunter, arrives in the midst of the storm to investigate the hauntings at Hemlock Lodge. Ollie, Coco, and Brian want to trust him, but Ollie’s watch, which once saved them from the smiling man, has a new cautionary message: BEWARE.

With Mr. Voland’s help, Ollie, Coco, and Brian reach out to the dead voices at Mount Hemlock. Maybe the ghosts need their help–or maybe not all ghosts can or should be trusted.

ARC provided by Penguin Group via NetGalley for an honest review.

Confession:

Wow, I thought that Small Spaces was creepy and scary, but this new story is perhaps even scarier. The ghosts are creepier and the setting is quite spooky. I can’t wait to tell my students about it and get it into their hands.

Ollie, Coco and Brian are all back, having survived their ordeal in the corn maze and with the Smiling Man. But now they are stuck in a haunted lodge with some seriously creepy ghosts. This book is told from both Ollie’s and Coco’s point of view. It was great learning more about Coco. I really liked her in the first book, but she really starts to shine in this story. She is super brave and smart and really comes through to save everyone. Ollie also does an awesome job of figuring things out and making sacrifices to save her friends and father. Brian did not have that big of a role this time around, but he is still able to be there and help when things get tough.

The setting of the ski lodge that used to be an orphanage was so perfect for this story. I also liked the addition of the stuffed animals, they added to the creep factor, especially when they started to move. The ghosts were scary and very well done. I also loved their use of the Ouija board to communicate not just with ghosts, but each other. Mr Voland, a ghost hunter who shows up during the storm, was a great addition to the story. He gave the story a needed touch of the supernatural at the beginning. But of course he proves to be not at all what he seems by the end of the story.

I don’t want to say much more about the book for fear of spoiling it. I haven’t yet started this author’s Winternight trilogy, it has been on my TBR for awhile now. But if it is anything like these two middle grade books then I am all in. This is an author to check out if you like books with atmosphere, believable characters and a spine tingling story.

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