Hey guys! Well, school is back in session and that pretty much means we’re back to our regularly scheduled programming. To kick off the school year, we have a new review from Theresa! This book is called One by One by D.W. Gillespie.
One by One (Expected Publication Date: September 26, 2019)
The Easton family has just moved into their new fixer-upper, a beautiful old house that they bought at a steal, and Alice, the youngest of the family, is excited to explore the strange, new place. Her excitement turns to growing dread as she discovers a picture hidden under the old wallpaper, a child’s drawing of a family just like hers.
Soon after, members of the family begin to disappear, each victim marked on the child’s drawing with a dark black X. It’s up to her to unlock the grim mystery of the house before she becomes the next victim.
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If you like haunted house stories, consider adding this one to your TBR pile. The description of the house is extremely atmospheric, and you’ll feel like you’ve moved in along with the characters. Some of the dialogue in the beginning is not as strong as in the rest of the book, but as the story progresses, the family dynamic is realistic. Furthermore, the dramatic intrigue and how they all change after moving into the house is well-written. We see how they all cope with the new environment, and their places in it. One primary focus: petty arguments over who is responsible for the creepy drawing on the wall. All of this plays out convincingly.
The story is definitely a slow burn, which doesn’t bother me at all. I found the pace mostly consistent throughout, and I wanted to read on. Along the way, I found Alice on the mature side for her age. If an older version of herself recounted the experience, it might have had an added narrative effect. We sort of get that vibe from the epilogue anyway (which is suddenly told in first person POV). Yet a third person POV narrates the rest of the book, which was a bit jarring for me. On another note, I craved some more terrifying events/details peppered in. What’s there is ominous and full of conflict, but could have been amped up a few notches. On the plus side, it gives the book a sense of believability.
The ending? That’s difficult to discuss without ruining it for you. What I dig about it is that I wasn’t expecting it. I anticipated something entirely supernatural to wreak havoc on those final pages (how supernatural it is, you’ll have to read to find out). I suppose the degree of ghostly interaction had me somewhat disappointed. However, Gillespie pulls it off in a way that wraps up the plot and will most likely leave readers satisfied. Overall, the author has what it takes to tell a story, making this a quick read. I’ll definitely read him again.
My Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Available on Amazon