Dom and Pat have always been inseparable twins. They did everything together, including watching their house go up in flames. Now, they’re living at their summer home in a family completely on edge. Nightmares start coming, and Dom begins acting strangely and not remembering. Then he comes. Dom is no longer Dom; he’s now haunted by a ghost, and Pat tries to save him without accidentally killing him in the process.
I loved the concept of this book. I loved the characters in this book. I didn’t love the outcome or the plot progression.
First of all, it is sufficiently creepy. The goblin-boy and the way he haunts Dom sent chills down my spine. There’s a good build up before the haunting to get the reader accustomed to the characters and actually care about them before things start to go awry. The imagery of the goblin-boy in the beginning is definitely scary, and the reader is just as confusing and frightened as Pat is.
Toward the end, though, I think the reader is even more confused. In the book blurb, it explains that Pat thinks the goblin-boy found them because of the fire. Without the fire, they were just innocent and stupid boys, but after, they hardened to the world. But that’s the only time that ever came into play. That wasn’t mentioned in the entire story, and it never explained why or how the haunting occurred save for that. See, this is why I don’t read book blurbs!
The ending was also super confusing in that I wasn’t sure if what was happening was occurring in the physical world or in a sort of metaphysical place. Pat was concerned about dying in the end, but he wasn’t actually doing those things, he was dreaming. Plus, I didn’t think they actually solved anything, but everything worked out anyway.
Speaking of everything working out (that’s really the only spoiler), I hate when everything works out! Pat and Dom are reunited, the goblin-boy and the person he was searching for are united. It’s just a big happy family by the end. Since it is a ghost story, I hoped someone would die or be severely messed up or go missing or something to add to the horror and suspense which would give a long-lasting effect. Nope. Nothing.
Overall, I enjoyed reading it, though it did feel a bit dense. It’s only around 300 pages, though, so that may have just been me being super busy or some slow-moving spots that weren’t needed. It’s a fun ghost story, but some parts don’t really make any sense and the whole situation is made out to be a bigger deal than it should be, in my opinion.
*Candlewick Press gave this book to me for an honest review.