Creepy, Fast-Paced

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The Suicide House is a fast-paced story whose short chapters will leave you on the edge of your seat and keep you guessing. There are times when you think you are going to learn what happened but are fooled and left hanging (albeit very enticingly). I would like to note that those looking for a novel about secret societies on campus may be disappointed, as the novel doesn’t spend much time detailing the society itself. It focuses on the crime and those involved, as well as the procedure and techniques used by those helping to solve it.

At 356 pages (this was from the print galley copy I had), I feel that the story would have been stronger had it been a bit shorter. However, Donlea utilizes some of this lengthiness to create well-rounded, three-dimensional characters. These well-developed characters are engaging and appealing and allow the reader to form relationships with them as the story unfolds.

Because I did find the story a bit lengthy, the conclusion seemed quite abrupt to me. It seemed to take a long time to lead up to it and then the book ends shortly after we find out the truth. In addition, there was something I wasn’t clear on at the end. I do not want to give anything away, but when the reader finds out WHAT is happening, there’s what I think of as a rather flimsy explanation as to WHY it happened.

Verdict: 3/5 stars. Good story, fast-paced, if a little convoluted with too much detail, engaging characters, creepy story and atmosphere.