Terror at White Otter Castle
Written by Bonnie Ferrante
This short novella could probably be best categorized as a young adult horror story, but it certainly will grip a mature adult audience as well. The language is simple, and the author deftly manipulates the reader into total involvement within the first few pages.
Three high school seniors are taking a summer canoe trip through the Canadian wilderness as a final get together before splitting up for college. Lauren, Aster and Beth have been together since first grade and have formed a “Power Triangle” pledging to always be there for each other in times of need. The girls are unique in terms of their backgrounds, skills and personalities. When their guides decide to camp in the shadow of the castle of James Anderson McQuat, the reader learns the legend of how Jimmy built his magnificent castle for Jane, the girl he longed to marry. Then he refused to meet her parents and their marriage plans collapsed. No one seems to know what happened to Jimmy.
Upon awakening on the beach, Aster sees a figure wearing a floppy hat and a long raincoat. No one believes her story. She mysteriously disappears and the real adventure begins. After a series of mishaps involved in the search, it becomes apparent that Aster has been kidnapped. Communication is cut and sabotage is indicated. What other dangers will the group encounter? The girls have pledged to always be there for each other, but can they find each other again and escape successfully?
There are lots of twists and turns, surprises, and a bit of horror combined to make this less than one hundred page story keep you on the edge of your seat. Next time you are looking for a well-written quick, exciting read, take a look at this one.
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