Sunday, 5 April 2020

Crater Lake by Jennifer Killick

Link to Goodreads

Published: March 2020, Firefly Press

👍👍👍👍👍

Don't.Ever.Fall.Asleep...

No chance reading this book!

It's been a long time since I read a seriously spooky story and I'd forgotten how much I enjoy them. Taking me right back to the days of Goosebumps and Point Horror, this fantastic read by Jennifer Killick kept me wide awake and reading late into the night.
Staying awake may have been easy for me but it's not so easy for the group of Year Six's taking a residential trip to the newly opened Crater Lake Activity Centre. Yet, Lance and his tightknit gang of friends soon realise that if they have any chance of surviving the creepy camp then that's exactly what they have to do.
With Lance's group being the only ones left standing, they must do everything in their power to protect themselves from a sinister alien fate. But waspish Miss. Hoche is on their trail, the exits are guarded and all phone signals are unavailable. Do they stand any chance of saving their classmates and getting out alive?
The first brilliant thing about this book is that you won't have to wait long to be gripped. The plot kicks off with an unnerving incident which immediately draws you into a fast-paced and twisty journey of zombies, alien spores and the urgent need to escape. Whilst the book has a classic feel of both horror and sci-fi about it, the story offers an original and spine-tingling take on familiar themes.
The tale is perfect for middle-grade readers looking for something daring, exhilarating and very, very spooky. The heart-thumping narrative will leave them gasping for breath but isn't too frightening to be age inappropriate. Counter-balancing the horror is a spot-on and very heart-warming account of group friendship which I found to be the highlight of the book (and tantamount to the group in The Goonies). Lance's group are a loveable mix of characters - savvy, contemporary, smart and everything that is wonderful about the youth of today. I loved their style, their language, their warmth and their loyalty and was left feeling full of hope and promise at the end of the novel (plus desperate to meet them again).
Jennifer Killick's writing is outstanding. She interweaves a web of horror and intrigue with the comforting safety blanket of kinship. I don't think there will be any stopping this novel...film? cinema? TV? I certainly hope so!

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