Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Review: The Vanishing Game

Synopsis: Jocelyn's twin brother Jack was the only family she had growing up in a world of foster homes-and now he's dead, and she has nothing. Then she gets a cryptic letter from "Jason December"-the code name her brother used to use when they were children at Seale House, a terrifying foster home that they believed had dark powers. Only one other person knows about Jason December: Noah, Jocelyn's childhood crush and their only real friend among the troubled children at Seale House.

But when Jocelyn returns to Seale House and the city where she last saw Noah, she gets more than she bargained for. Turns out the house's powers weren't just a figment of a childish imagination. And someone is following Jocelyn. Is Jack still alive? And if he is, what kind of trouble is he in? The answer is revealed in a shocking twist that turns this story on its head and will send readers straight back to page 1 to read the book in a whole new light.

My Review: I have to say, when I first started reading this, I was severely creeped out.  Fifty pages in and I couldn't stay up too late reading this at night.  The author definitely plunges you right into the story.  When Jocelyn first receives the letter you can only infer from the synopsis as to what it really means. The beginning kind of jumps abruptly from the letter to Jocelyn trying to find Noah.  Everything is explained when Jocelyn tells Noah about what has been happening. Not a day back in her childhood town and her car has already been stolen along with most of her possessions.  Noah is her only hope of getting back on her feet and finding out whether or not her brother is still alive.  

Facing the horror of Seale House is more difficult than Jocelyn ever expected though.  Not only is she starting to hallucinate and black out while in the house, but some of Seale House's nightmares might be real.  When some troublesome kids run her out of the house she comes face to face with one of her childhood friends from Seale House.  Except it isn't a happy reunion, he wants to kill her.  But he is the least of her problems.  Someone else is out there stalking her, waiting for the right time to get to her.  

As Noah joins her on her search for Jack, they discover the first set of clues.  Their childhood games of hiding clues has now turned into a race to find Jack before whoever is chasing them catches up and finishes the job.  As the identity of their pursuer is discovered, the company Jack worked for is implicated in the whole mess.  Did Jack fake his own death to hide? Or does he have something the company wants? 

I have to say I was completely sucked in from beginning to end.  I couldn't say for sure what was going on the entire book.  I did end up guessing the plot twist, but I honestly didn't think I was right.  I was just throwing out completely ludicrous plot twists in my mind and ended up guessing it.  Though I have to admit I was NEVER for sure.  There seemed to be so much contrary evidence.  For one minute I was sure Jack was dead, the next that he was alive, and the  most of the time I just plain didn't know.  Definitely kept me on my toes the entire story.  

I really liked Noah too.  Despite all the shit going on around them, Noah and Jocelyn connect.  He wasn't your typical heart throb.  He was a very complex character and I loved his tough guy attitude and yet he was incredibly smart.  Usually computer programmer and taekwondo don't mix, but I liked it XD

I really liked the ending as well.  It wasn't picture perfect, if you get my meaning.  It still had a good conclusion and Jocelyn was trying to move on and live her dream.  I definitely would say the author left a possible opening for a second book, but I don't really know where she'd go with it.  I just think that Jocelyn's story isn't over yet.  This was definitely a refreshing read.  Haven't read something that got me this spooked in a while.  The clues were fantastic and clever and just really added to the mystery of the story. 


Alexa said...

Idk about this one I'm usually not one for scary books. It does sound interesting though and I'm glad you enjoyed it! :)

Thanks for the great review.