Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Griffin's Castle by Jenny Nimmo

Desperate and neglected, Dinah is a girl who has been bounced around from place to place her whole life. When her young, irresponsible mother lands a job that allows them to temporarily live in a very old and decaying mansion, the fiercely independent Dinah is determined to transform it into the home she has always dreamed of. Unfortunately the house is owned by her mother’s current boyfriend, a cold man who doesn’t like Dinah. In her isolated loneliness, the girl finds herself forming a very real bond with several stone animals carved into a wall she passes each day on her way to school. One day she speaks to one of the statues inviting it to come with her. To her surprise—it gets down off the wall and accompanies her home. Over time, more statues soon follow. But are these magical creatures really her friends?

Griffin’s Castle has the same chilling atmosphere as a good ghost story. Readers who are easily creeped out might want to steer clear of this slightly darker tale. Those who love a good thrill (like myself) will enjoy reading this thoroughly engrossing book. My only complaint was the ending. There were many things that are left unexplained and the ending was a bit too nice and neat to be realistic, especially after everything that had happened. Despite these flaws, I still liked the book and would recommend it to anyone who likes to be deliciously scared.

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