The Gathering

the-gatheringShadow House, #1

Written by Dan Poblocki


Five children, Dash, Dylan, Poppy, Marcus and Azumi, receive invitations to attend the Larkspur Academy. Their invitations are personal to their particular circumstances. But it isn’t until they meet that they find out these differences and what appeared to be exciting is anything but. Something is very wrong with this house: hallways lengthen, doors disappear, and ghosts of children appear and vanish. And there is no way out.

The Gathering, first book in the Shadow House series by Dan Poblocki, is delightfully mysterious and creepy. There is a dark, eerie feel to the story, although written just right for upper grade elementary or anyone who loves spooky stories. I would recommend parents preview for younger readers who might scare easily. I think Mr. Poblocki has written characters kids can relate to. There is also a Scholastic App that readers can download for free to add to the scary storyline. And what really creates an even more eerie effect are the illustrations. Made to resemble photographs (some of children in creepy animal masks), these black and white pictures are incredible. Oh, and the cover is creepy too! I love scary stories and really liked this book and look forward to reading the second one called You Can’t Hide that will be available on December 27th. If you love spooky stories, especially around this time of year, this is the book for you.

Review by Renee Larsen, Hillside Elementary Media Center
Rating: ★★★★★ (5 stars)
Interest Level: Grades 4-8 or anyone who loves scary stories

Shadow House, #1
The Gathering
Written by Dan Poblocki
Scholastic Inc.
215 pages
Release Date: August 30, 2016
A review copy was provided by the publisher.

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