Title & Author: The House Next Door by Darcy Coates
First line: I live next to a haunted house.
Summary: Jo has never been inside Marwick House; her cats won't even enter its yard. And she's never met any of its occupants either, mostly because none of them stay for very long. Until Anna moves in. She seems nice, and a little fragile, and Jo tries to warn her that sometimes strange things happen in Marwick House, but Anna doesn't seem to mind. Not even when she sees the ghost of Helen Marwick who died a very unhappy death there years ago. But things change when Helen starts to make her presence known.
My thoughts: I love novels about haunted houses and Darcy Coates writes some good ones. At first, Marwick House seems fairly benign. There's a little ghostly activity here and there--flickering lights, doors that open and close, haunting piano music in the hall--but it's not until the second half of the book that things ramp up and start to get really suspenseful and scary. I was intrigued by Marwick House itself, and I liked the quiet build up at the first, and how I almost felt sorry for Helen. Jo and Anna were a little too passive at times for me to really like them, but Jo made up for it at the end. And what an ending! Although I thought the The Carrow Haunt was better, I liked this ghostly tale enough to give it 3.5/5 stars.