Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Review: Sheltered by Debra Chapoton

Living together unsupervised, five troubled teens confront demonic forces and are compelled to deal with their problems in distinctly different ways. Paranormal meets psycho meets Goth in this story of a supernatural haunting and budding love.

High school junior, Ben, hacks into his step-father's real estate holdings and provides rooms in an old two-story house to various outcasts: the schizophrenic kid, the angry Goth girl, and the homeless girl who worships him. When Megan needs a place to live she comes to the rooming house with a different set of problems and the ability to confuse and attract Ben.

One by one strange and mysterious occurrences stretch the teens’ beliefs in the supernatural. How they deal with demons, real and imagined, has tragic as well as redeeming consequences.

First line:  “Emily knew the precise moment that Ben returned, she felt him in her scars.”

I was actually really disappointed with this book. I was expected a huge thriller. Something creepy from start to end. It was just too unbelievable for me. Sure it’s a paranormal story, but it seemed like the characters would just go on with their normal lives after some freak of nature incident. I couldn’t get into it.

Honestly, if the paranormal was taken out, I might like it more. The characters are people with a lot of problems and I’d like to hear more about their stories without demons and such. Ben is the cute guy who is way too mature for his age; Megan is the teen mom who’s fighting for custody; Emily is the cutter; Cori is the druggie; and Chuck/Adam is the schizophrenic. These teens all end up living together without parental supervision. Without the paranormal, this would have created a really interesting story.

But there is paranormal stuff going on. Mostly demonic possession. By the end of the book I was starting to notice that it was really a religious thing. All the characters who happened to get possessed were those who were weak, without a god, and susceptible to the possessions. The possession scenes were super creepy, but I feel like they could have been incorporated into the book in a better way.

Overall, I probably wouldn’t recommend this, sadly. I had high hopes for this book, but was let down.

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