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Daemon Hall
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Trade Reviews

  Booklist Review

"Ian Tremblin, the King of Teen Scream, holds a short-story contest in which the five finalists spend the evening with him in a haunted mansion, Daemon Hall. The aspiring teenage authors, three boys and two girls, have to tell Tremblin their horror stories by candlelight. Any finalist who cannot make it through the night is automatically disqualified from the contest. The best of the stories is one involving ravenous human-spider hybrids. Another is a version of the familiar babysitter urban legends, updated to involve a chat room rather than the traditional telephone. Predictably, not everything is as it seems and suspense ensues when contestants begin disappearing. Whether the spooky goings-on are optical illusion or genuine supernatural malevolence is open to question, but one contestant does die tragically. Readers looking for creepy chills and thrills will find plenty of satisfaction in this fast-paced book."--"Sullivan, Ed" Copyright 2007 Booklist

  Kirkus Review

Famous author Ian Tremblin has chosen five teenagers to spend the night in his haunted mansion. The young aspiring writers and Tremblin will tell each other horror stories all night, and Tremblin will select the best storyteller, who will have a horror novel published. The motley crew of young writers is a veritable Breakfast Club lineup: Chris, the unexpectedly sensitive jock; Chelsea, the freaky Goth girl; Kara, the shy girl who doesn't like horror; Demarius, the black adolescent whose main personality trait is being less dysfunctional than the others; and Wade, the panic-attack-plagued narrator. As the night progresses, the teens learn that spending the night in a haunted house is not as easy as they might have suspected. The short stories Tremblin and his protgs tell are of indifferent quality, appropriate as campfire tales more than short stories. The framing narrative, however, builds predictable but enjoyable tension as the characters' fear and danger grow. An unexpectedly optimistic ending concludes this gentle horror tale. (Fiction. 12-14) Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Is winning a writing contest worth risking your life? <br> <br> Nothing exciting ever happens in the town of Maplewood--that is, until famous thriller writer Ian Tremblin holds a short-story writing contest with a prize that seems to be the opportunity of a lifetime: five finalists will get to spend the evening with Tremblin himself in the haunted mansion Daemon Hall, and the winner of the best short story will see publication. <br> Wade Reilly and the other finalists could never have imagined what they find lurking in the shadows of this demonic mansion. During a suspenseful night of tale-telling, strange incidents mix the realms of the real and the supernatural. What is Tremblin really up to, and can he be trusted? What about Daemon Hall--is it alive? And, more to the point, will any of the contestants make it out of this hall of horrors to tell their story? <br> In the tradition of Stephen King, this chilling novel will have teen readers on edge in anticipation of what's to come with the next extinguished candle.
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