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From the Camp Murderface series, volume 2

by Josh Berk & Saundra Mitchell

Pub Date: May 25th, 2021
ISBN: 978-0-06-287166-4
Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

There’s something in the water in the creature-feature sequel to Camp Murderface (2020).

After unraveling the haunting of Lake Sweetwater and helping the ghosts to rest, Tez is ready to kick back and make the most of the few weeks of summer camp they have left. Corryn, however, is convinced the horror’s merely on hiatus. When Ew tells Corryn her strange dreams about the lake, Corryn’s on high alert and the first to notice the counselors’ fixation with getting kids in the lake—and the subsequent memory loss experienced by those kids. While the dual narration works well for filling in missing memories, sometimes it results in repetitive exposition, and it may put readers too far ahead of the characters in solving parts of the mystery. Once too much dangerous weirdness piles up, the heroes’ bunkmates want to join the team, which they dub the Murderfaces. The characters’ humor and interpersonal dynamics keep the book lively in the face of injuries and body horror. Tez’s Marfan syndrome enhances his vulnerability throughout. The grand finale is a lengthy summer blockbuster of a climax in which, despite help from unexpected sources, it’s up to the kids to save themselves. The camp population has implied diversity; Corynn presents as White, and Tez’s grandmother is from Guam (the rest of his heritage is not specified). The end hints at some horror remaining after the happy denouement.

An exceptionally fun read.

(Horror. 8-14)