Arc Review: What Lives in the Woods by Lindsay Currie

Title: What Lives in the Woods
Author: Lindsay Currie
Genre: Middle Grade / Horror / Paranormal
Publication Date: September 14th, 2021
Publisher: Sourcebooks Young Readers
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you to the publisher and netgalley for an earc to review! All opinions are my own.

“Welcome to the decrepit Woodmoor Manor…where something in the woods is always watching. From the author of Scritch Scratch comes a chilling middle grade story about a creepy mansion and sinister creatures in the woods

All Ginny Anderson wants from her summer is to relax. But when Ginny’s father—a respected restoration expert in Chicago—surprises the family with a month-long trip to Michigan, everything changes. They aren’t staying in a hotel like most families would. No, they’re staying in a mansion. A twenty-six room, century-old building surrounded by dense forest. Woodmoor Manor.

Locals claim the surrounding woods are inhabited by mutated creatures that escaped a mad scientist over a hundred years ago. And some say campers routinely disappear never to be seen again.

When the creaky floors and shadowy corners of the mansion seem to take on a life of their own, Ginny uncovers the wildest mystery of all: there’s more than one legend roaming Saugatuck, Michigan, and they definitely aren’t after campers.

They’re after her.” (Goodreads)

After reading this author’s spooky Middle Grade book last year called Scritch Scratch I wanted to read her new book! I actually didn’t find out about it until searching through Amazon, haha, but luckily I was able to get it on Netgalley even after it was released. I was so excited to get the email!

The book has one point-of-view and it comes from Ginny. She’s a soon-to-be 8th grader, if I remember correctly, and she is off for the summer. Ginny wanted to go to a writing class but her parents have other plans in mind especially when it comes to her dad’s job. It isn’t the summer she expected but it is one she will never forget.

Ginny loves a good mystery and her favorite author is Agatha Christie. I haven’t read a book by her yet but she is on my tbr. I can understand why Ginny would feel the need to solve what is going on in the house even if she is scared. She has that drive and maybe it is caused by the books she read, heh. She also is trying to use it as a way to prove to her parents that the legends are true and get back to Chicago. I really don’t blame her!

She does have an older brother who is on the athletic but goofy side who also likes to tease her. He is the typical brother! I did like their bond and how he knew when she was absolutely scared that he would take charge on the mission and help her.

There is a guy who comes to this town every summer that is introduced early on as Will. He is very much like Ginny and enjoys to read too. He also tells her of his own experience with the mansion and ends up trying to help her as well. The book doesn’t have any relationships since it is middle grade but it does elude to maybe they like each other? I did like their friendship!

I’m always intrigued by what author’s will come up with when it comes to a setting and this one didn’t disappoint! I liked learning about the mansion as well as the surrounding town when Ginny would go out. The mansion was definitely a very spooky place that had me scared but continuously reading into the late night as I needed to know what would happen next. I wasn’t exactly sure what would come of the rumors/legends that were spread around about the mansion. There were instances I thought it would go one way but it surprised me and went another direction. The history of the mansion was a nice touch and it gave me that historical connection I like about paranormal stories.

My only complaint about this book would be that the ending felt a bit more anti-climatic than her last book. It just felt like it wrapped up too quickly. It is a decent ending though and I liked the added epilogue to show us what would happen for Ginny and her new friend Will.

Overall, this was an excitingly spooky read! If you haven’t read a book by this author, I’d definitely recommend her for this upcoming season!


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