Friday, November 07, 2008

The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong

Here is a list of themes I've long suspected I had an affinity for (this suspicion was confirmed as soon as I began cataloging the books I read on LibraryThing): magic, supernatural, vampires, superheroes. Clearly, my subconscious wants me to be a powerful vampire magician who works with other supernatural beings to protect the world from evil. All that's left for me to do is figure out how to turn my subconscious' wish into next year's Halloween costume without resorting to vampire fangs, wand, and a sign that reads, "I work with other supernatural beings to protect the world from various forces of evil." Hmmmm. I should probably just focus on reading about those themes instead...

One book that satisfies nearly all my theme preferences is Kelley Armstrong's first teen novel, The Summoning. Set in the same "universe" as her adult novels (our world, only, unbeknownst to us, vamps, werewolves, witches, etc., exist and are *mostly* hiding their presence from we intolerant/scaredy-cat humans), The Summoning focuses on Chloe Saunders, a seemingly normal, happy fifteen-year-old. Normal, that is, until the day she finally gets her period, sees a ghost in her high school's hallway, and has a teeny, tiny, screamingly violent meltdown. The school's administrators consider her episode an indication of encroaching mental illness and insist she spend a few weeks in a group home for mentally ill teens for observation before returning to school. At Lyle House, Chloe meets her house mates, and it soon becomes apparent that their "mental illnesses" just might be supernatural in nature. And their teachers might be doing more than simply caring for the students...

This was fantastic! Armstrong's writing is exciting, her characters are richly drawn, and the story gripped me so I could barely stand setting the book down to go to work and to sleep. Unfortunately, I am forced to dole out a mere four-and-a-half stars out of five because The Summoning ends on a cliff-hanger worthy of the best television season finales. And now I have to WAIT for the next one to find out what happens next!!! ARRGGGHHHH!!!!

1 comment:

DL, Cassville, MO said...

I was just visiting your site, trying to see some examples of teen library blogs, when I read your description of this book. I had not heard of it and it sounds Wonderful! I'm definitely going to order it for my teen readers! They will be ecstatic.