"I was sixteen the first time my grandmother died . . ."
Sarah Parsons has never seen Amber House, the grand Maryland estate that's been in her family for three centuries. She's never walked its hedge maze nor found its secret chambers; she's never glimpsed the shades that haunt it, nor hunted for lost diamonds in its walls.
But all of that is about to change. After her grandmother passes away, Sarah and her friend Jackson decide to search for the diamonds--and the house comes alive. She discovers that she can see visions of the house's past, like the eighteenth-century sea captain who hid the jewels, or the glamorous great-grandmother driven mad by grief. She grows closer to both Jackson and a young man named Richard Hathaway, whose family histories are each deeply entwined with her own. But when the visions start to threaten the person she holds most dear, Sarah must do everything she can to get to the bottom of the house's secrets, and stop the course of history before it is cemented forever.
Publication Date: October 1, 2012
What a perfect time of year to read this super creepy book! I haven’t read a good book about a spooky house in a long time and I really enjoyed this novel about the mysteries surrounding the Amber House.
The novel is told from the point of view of Sarah, a teenage girl who has just attended the funeral for her grandmother. While her mother sets out to sell the family home, she decides to throw Sarah a sweet sixteen birthday party. Sarah has other plans since she agrees to help Jackson, a boy who lives on the estate, to search for a set of lost diamonds that are said to be hidden within the house.
This book had something for everyone. There was romance (a hint of a love triangle between Sarah, Jackson and the senator’s son Richard). The mystery and suspense aspects were the strongest as Sarah tries to unravel the secrets of her ancestors. Also, there were paranormal touches as Sarah begins to see echoes (past memories) contained within the house.
The characterizations were expertly done. Sarah felt like a real teen girl and it was interesting to witness the growing conflict between her and her mother. Her little brother Sam was endearing and I loved every scene he had with Sarah. The love interests were mysterious, but I liked that quality about them.
When I saw the book had three authors (a mother and two daughters trio), I had some hesitation. Novels with too many hands in it can sometimes feel like the story doesn’t flow well. This is certainly not the case with the Amber House. It’s superbly written and the descriptions were eerily beautiful. One section in particular about a mother spider gave me the chills and I couldn’t get it out of my head.
I wasn’t expecting the novel to be part of a trilogy. It felt like a standalone, so I was surprised to find out there are planned sequels. I’m anxious to see what happens next!
Rating 5/5 Stars
Thanks to the publisher for a copy of this book for review!