Thursday, April 16, 2015

Review: Shutter by Courtney Alameda

From Goodreads: Micheline Helsing is a tetrachromat - a girl who sees the auras of the undead in a prismatic spectrum. As one of the last descendants of the Van Helsing lineage, she has trained since childhood to destroy monsters both corporeal and spiritual: the corporeal undead go down by the bullet, the spiritual undead by the lens. With an analog SLR camera as her best weapon, Micheline exorcises ghosts by capturing their spiritual energy on film. She's aided by her crew: Oliver, a techno-whiz and the boy who developed her camera's technology; Jude, who can predict death; and Ryder, the boy Micheline has known and loved forever. When a routine ghost hunt goes awry, Micheline and the boys are infected with a curse known as a soulchain. As the ghostly chains spread through their bodies, Micheline learns that if she doesn't exorcise her entity in seven days or less, she and her friends will die. Now pursued as a renegade agent by her monster-hunting father, Leonard Helsing, she must track and destroy an entity more powerful than anything she's faced before ... or die trying.

My Rating: 4.5 hearts 

Thoughts on the Novel: With its creepy cover, Courtney Alameda’s Shutter was a book that I had no plans on reading … until I got a copy of it for review. So, I decided to give it a try, hoping that it wouldn’t be too terrifying.

Surprisingly, I ended up really enjoying Shutter. I don’t generally read horror novels so I don’t know how effective mirrors and cameras are in actually capturing and trapping violent ghosts, but Alameda’s explanations seemed pretty believable to me. I also liked how Alameda incorporated references to Dracula throughout Shutter.

Furthermore, I liked Micheline and all her friends, and thought they had a great group dynamic. In particular, the relationship between Micheline and Ryder as they transitioned from friends to something more was pretty cute and believable. I would have preferred it though if Micheline’s relationship with her dad had been less clich├ęd and if there had been more females in the novel.

Ultimately, if you loved Kendare Blake’s Anna Dressed in Blood, you’ll probably enjoy Shutter as well. It’s just as violent and gory, but has a slightly more predictable plot.

Shutter was released by Feiwel & Friends in February 2015. 

Comments About the Cover: It’s so dark and scary-looking! 

In exchange for an honest review, this book was received from the publisher (Raincoast Books) for free.


  1. I am so SO glad you liked this! It surprised the hell out of me too, and while I'm not a fan of the cover, the rest more than made up for it.

  2. Yay, I'm glad you liked this one because it makes me think that I will enjoy it too! The characters sound pretty great, and the dynamic they all have together sounds like it works out pretty well. I really like "if you loved Kendare Blake’s Anna Dressed in Blood" because I thought that book was great!

  3. I just had a teen come in and ask for any latest horror books so I'm glad to see that you enjoyed this one. The cover didn't really appeal to me, but I've read nothing but great reviews of the book. I'll have to order it.

  4. Ooh don't you love it when a book that you weren't expecting to like ends up a totally happy surprise that you loved? Doesn't happen often, I find, but it's always nice :) This one isn't one that I would pick up on my own either, both because it's not my genre and because I hadn't read any reviews for this one yet. Until now! May need to check this one out closer to Halloween :)


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