Friday, March 31, 2017

House of Secrets #1 by Chris Columbus & Ned Vizzini

House of Secrets (House of Secrets, #1)My name is Brendan, and the lives of my family members took a terrifying turn immediately after we moved into Kristoff House. Our new neighbor transformed into the Wind Witch, my parents disappeared, and my sisters and I were transported to a world of giant creatures, warriors, and pirates. We now realize the home was transported into a mix-up of three Kristoff novels, and the Wind Witch is out for revenge. Our grandfather was a con man and became close friends with Kristoff before something happened. We must locate a powerful book before the witch will free us from this terrifying world, but we want to discover why Kristoff developed a hatred for our grandfather. The book can only be found by making selfish decisions, and opening it will help the Wind Witch spread more evil.

Yes, this book was written by the Chris Columbus famous for his work with the Harry Potter and Percy Jackson movies. It started off sounding like another ghost story, but it quickly evolved into much more. The mixture of characters was interesting. Cordelia was the responsible older sister, Brendan was the moody middle brother, and Eleanor was the underestimated youngest child. They were joined by various characters from the three novels including a British pilot from the early 1900's, and Cordelia immediately developed a crush on him. The setting is in Kristoff House although it's floating in the ocean most of the time. The idea was fun at first, but I became tired of it after a while. It limited the plot a bit, as the kids were constantly climbing through hidden hallways, a dumbwaiter, or on the roof. Other characters had to come to the house so events could change. The actual conflict of finding the book before being killed by pirates or other dangers was engaging, but the events could have been developed more if the characters could have moved around. The house always seemed to be taking on more water, but it took a heck of a long time to sink.

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