Harrow Lake by Kat Ellis – TheWriteReads Blog Tour
I’m happy to share with you another blog tour where I will be reviewing a new book. Thank you to The Write Reads for inviting me to be a part of the tour and the author and publisher for giving me a free copy in exchange for an honest review. So let’s get right to it!
Welcome to Harrow Lake. Someone’s expecting you . . .
Lola Nox is the daughter of a celebrated horror filmmaker – she thinks nothing can scare her.
But when her father is brutally attacked in their New York apartment, she’s swiftly packed off to live with a grandmother she’s never met in Harrow Lake, the eerie town where her father’s most iconic horror movie was shot.
The locals are weirdly obsessed with the film that put their town on the map – and there are strange disappearances, which the police seem determined to explain away.
And there’s someone – or something – stalking her every move.
The more Lola discovers about the town, the more terrifying it becomes. Because Lola’s got secrets of her own. And if she can’t find a way out of Harrow Lake, they might just be the death of her.
This was an interesting book for me. The plot is a great one and it was certainly the thing that drew me into wanting to read this. I think that it’s a perfectly fine book, with a lot of super creepy and even scary moments, but it wasn’t exactly what I thought that it was. That is not to say that that is a bad thing, sometimes those twists and unexpected turns are great in a book. Here it felt like the story was a highly original idea and then it turned into something that has been told before.
Lola is an appealing character, she’s more mature than you’d expect for someone her age. Which some could dislike about her but frankly I felt like the author did a good job of explaining why she was the way she was. Her overbearing father that seemed to want to keep a tight grip on her was told very well to me. You don’t get much characterization about Nolan, her father but you get an idea of him through the thoughts and words spoken of him throughout the story.
I don’t know if it was just the formatting of the ARC copy or what but there were a lot of times where I had difficulty knowing who was speaking. The story was choppy in that there wasn’t any clear definition of when one scene changed into another so it felt like things just got cut off in the middle of a scene. It was hard to follow the story like this sometimes but again that could just be the way that the copy was laid now and not a true reflection of the book however I note it because it could have been done on purpose as well.
The townsfolk that we get to meet in Harrow Lake are a mix of nice and creepy. The town itself is creepy and the things that happen there are written well. There were things that didn’t make much sense in that it isn’t quite how those things work in real life. I did enjoy watching Lola’s descent into figuring out what was going on, either with her mother or her grandmother or even her father.
It was interesting to see how a story told to scare children could be transformed into something more sinister and terrifying. The author did a good job of Lola questioning what was real and what was imagined in her own head. I, however, didn’t like the twist at all. It felt cliche and overused. It was disappointing to have it end like that. Overall the book was decent, it was creative and it had a good plot. I wish it had ended differently but I think that some of the best stories are the ones that leave you feeling frustrated by how things end.
Give this one a try, it just might surprise you.
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Make sure to check out everyone else that is on this tour and their thoughts on Harrow Lake. Thank you again to TheWriteReads, the author and the publisher for the chance to read this book.