Narrator: Bahni Turpin
Length: 9 hrs 26 min.
Published: 26 September 2017
Publisher: Listening Library/Duttons Books For Young Readers
Category: Young Adult/Horror/Contemporary/Mystery
Scream meets YA in this hotly-anticipated new novel from the bestselling author of Anna and the French Kiss.
One-by-one, the students of Osborne High are dying in a series of gruesome murders, each with increasing and grotesque flair. As the terror grows closer and the hunt intensifies for the killer, the dark secrets among them must finally be confronted.
International bestselling author Stephanie Perkins returns with a fresh take on the classic teen slasher story that’s fun, quick-witted, and completely impossible to put down.
Rating: 3 Stars
I am a big fan of horror movies, especially this time of year. What better time to pick up Stephanie Perkins’ newest book, comped as a Scream meets YA book? There’s a chill in the air, pumpkins are on front stoops, and Halloween is a week away.
This book certainly had the hallmarks of a teenage slasher movie. There was the new kid in school, the cliques in high school that are either suspects or victims, the typical stupidity of people in horror movies. You expect these things when you’re watching a movie or reading a book in the genre, almost, because they’re classic.
Then again, you also need something fresh to make the story unique, otherwise you’re just following the same out path through the corn maze that you can tell has been beaten down by hundreds of people before you. That was the problem I had with There’s Someone Inside Your House. The writing itself was alright and I didn’t outright hate it, but the story felt bland, like I was watching a horror movie that had billed itself as a 2017 R rated film that ended up having the budget of an 80’s G movie. That’s not a great surprise, really.
One of the cliches I’m surprised wasn’t used was that of one of the core members of the friend group being accused (seriously) of being the killer or actually turning out to be involved. There are rumors about one, but nothing really comes of it.
Halfway through the book, we learned who the killer was and I kept waiting to discover another twist, something that would make learning this information worth it so early on. It was around page 170, I think, in the physical book and in the audio book there were four hours of listening time left. Four hours was a painful amount of time to keep waiting and waiting and ultimately have little to absolutely no payoff. There was no surprise twist, no secret partner or huge motive. It was a letdown, to be honest, regarding the killer.
There’s also the main character, Makani. Her characterization was disappointing, considering she was the new girl, the one who was the focus of the majority of the book. If this were a film, she would have been the one the camera tracked 90% of the time it didn’t spend on victims. It felt like I knew nothing about her and that had nothing to do with the secrets she was keeping about her past for most of the book. I felt more connection with her grandmother, the church going elderly woman who enjoyed putting puzzles together and simple things like a Halloween doughnut.
The best part about listening to There’s Someone Inside Your House was the narrator. Bahni Turpin has been a star from the firs time I heard her narrating The Sun Is Also A Star. She also narrates Everything, Everything and The Hate U Give. The emotion she puts into her primary character gives them body, even when the writing doesn’t support it.
I have read Perkins’ books in the past, her Anna and the French Kiss series, and this hasn’t put me off her entirely, but I think I might consider twice before buying a horror book by her again.