Alexandra Sokoloff’s first novel following a successful career in adapting novels and suspense/horror scripts for Hollywood studios met with some success when it was published in 2006, earning her a Bram Stoker Award (horror) nomination.
The Harrowing is a little on the predictable side but an enjoyable read, as Ms. Sokoloff’s writing style is unstilted and flowing, with an easy-to-follow plotline that allows her characters to develop in the reader’s mind’s eye.
Five students at Baird College decide to hang around campus during Thanksgiving vacation, each with an unvoiced reason for disdaining a holiday trip home.
They come together – an unlikely group, each as unique as the other – in the dark, Victorian depths of Mendenhall, where an old Ouija board is found. Should they “play” it? Or not? To no reader’s surprise, they gather ‘round the board and begin their adventure.
Five students. Five students and … and what? The ghost of students past who died horrible deaths? Or something more evil and sinister?
Their discoveries continue to haunt them when the rest of the students return from Thanksgiving vacation. The five cohorts delve deep within themselves, bringing to surface their own prejudices and fears.
Their final confrontation with the Ouija entity is a fiery affair that whets one’s appetite for more stories by Ms. Sokoloff. She’s written two more since – The Price, and The Unseen. And she’s got another one (as yet untitled) on the way in 2010.
She also blogs on Murderati.com.