Saturday, May 19, 2018

REVIEW: Thornhill by Pam Smy - Paige

Posted by HelloJennyReviews at 9:00 AM
Genre: Middle Grade Mystery/Horror
Recommended Age: 14+ (death, psychological horror, trigger warnings for suicide)
Pages: 544
Disclaimer: I received this book through KidLitExchange! Thanks! All opinions are my own.


1982: Mary is a lonely orphan at the Thornhill Institute For Children at the very moment that it’s shutting its doors. When her few friends are all adopted or re-homed and she’s left to face a volatile bully alone, her revenge will have a lasting effect on the bully, on Mary, and on Thornhill itself.

2017: Ella has just moved to a new town where she knows no one. From her room on the top floor of her new home, she has a perfect view of the dilapidated, abandoned Thornhill Institute across the way, where she glimpses a girl in the window. Determined to befriend the girl and solidify the link between them, Ella resolves to unravel Thornhill’s shadowy past.

Told in alternating, interwoven plotlines―Mary’s through intimate diary entries and Ella’s in bold, striking art―Pam Smy’s Thornhillis a haunting exploration of human connection, filled with suspense.

This is probably the most unique book I’ve read in my life. The book is told in duel POV. The present day is told entirely in picture format, the 1982 written version in diary format. I think this format works amazingly well for the book and I was able to connect to both of the girls. The writing was amazing, the plot was intriguing and the pacing was excellent. The world building for both time periods was also detailed and impressive as they were both done in different ways.

However, I do fear that some of the subject material in the book might be a little bit too mature for middle-grade kids. The book deals with a lot of heavy topics and while I found it amazing, I do want to caution parents to make sure your child is emotionally mature enough for some of the warnings I listed above.

Verdict:  Amazingly unique and dark. Perfect for the young horror fans.


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