Natalie has returned to her small, mostly white Maine town for the summer, primarily to figure out why she’s having vivid nightmares about a derelict house.
While there she’s less interested in making peace with the three bullies who assaulted her and her brainy cousin, Teddy, with a gun a couple of years previously—an event that ended with the shooting death of a fourth miscreant, Peter. In her dreams, the house is icy cold. During visits to the house with ever intrepid Teddy, she’s transported back in time to 1948, when an evil resident of the house is just beginning a career as a serial murderer. As disquieting as those surreal experiences are—since she can only observe and not intervene to save the three victims—the present is also disturbing. She repeatedly encounters her former attackers: Lowell, who seems reformed and is becoming increasingly attractive to Natalie, and the intimidating pair of scarily out-of-control Jason and unstable Grace, who is devoted to, or perhaps controlled by, him. French neatly manages the complications of three intertwined storylines: Natalie’s emerging peril in the present, the terrifyingly depicted past inhabited by the three well-realized victims, and the third thread of what actually happened on the day Peter died.
Chilling and suspenseful, this paranormal thriller with a touch of romance will keep readers on the edges of their seats. (Paranormal thriller. 12-18)