Friday, 13 March 2015

Asylum by Madeleine Roux

Series: Asylum
Author: Madeleine Roux
Page Count: 313
Published: August 20th, 2013
Publisher: HarperTeen
5 Stars ★★★★★

Dan is attending New Hampshire College Prep this summer, and his dorm room is located in the old Brookline Asylum. 

He befriends Jordan and Abby, and explores the abandoned area of the asylum, which is strictly forbidden for students to access. Soon after, he finds himself having disturbing dreams and visions, and receiving threatening notes. Researching the asylum brings to light the horrible experiments and practices that the cruel warden subjected his patients to. 

As the dreams, visions, and notes escalate, the unspeakable occurs, and Dan finds himself in the very center of the terrifying situation. Will he, and his friends, survive the summer?

There were so many amazing things about this book, I'm not sure where to start! 

I was captivated from the first chapter. Roux's writing flows smoothly and I instantly liked Dan. I like how I didn't know absolutely everything about Dan, Abby, and Jordan right away.

I need to mention that I was pleased that amongst all of the creepy paranormal and psychological stuff going on in this book, real issues were addressed through the lives of the characters. For example, Dan was adopted and had to spend some time in the foster care system. Abby's family was having problems and she was unsettled for a portion of the novel because of this. Jordan was attending the program secretly because his homophobic parents had attempted to send him to a gay conversion camp.

Another thing I loved about this book is the guessing game that was going on in my head the entire time. I couldn't decide if Dan was crazy, or if he was really experiencing the things he claimed to experience throughout the novel. 

I wondered who could possibly be behind the disturbing notes and why Dan was having such strange dreams and visions. One moment, I was suspecting one of the characters. The next, I had changed my mind and was scrambling to put the pieces together myself, to figure out who was behind all of this madness.

The photographs throughout the book really added to the creepy-factor by giving me visuals of Dan's visions/dreams and of the settings and objects the three friends came across. It enhanced the story because I was able to better imagine what Dan, Abby, and Jordan  were going through and discovering. 

I recommend this book to fans of YA, mysteries and thrillers, and to anyone searching for a genuinely creepy read.