The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong

(Cover picture courtesy of In Between Writing and Reading.)

My name is Chloe Saunders and my life will never be the same again.

All I wanted was to make friends, meet boys and keep on being ordinary.  I don’t even know what that means anymore.  It all started on the day that I saw my first ghost—and the ghost saw me.

Now there are ghosts everywhere and they won’t leave me alone.  To top it all off, I somehow got myself locked up in Lyle House, a “special home” for troubled teens.  Yet the home isn’t what it seems.  Don’t tell anyone, but I think there might be more to my classmates than meets the eye.  The question is, whose side are they on?  It’s up to me to figure out the dangerous secrets behind Lyle House…before its skeletons come back to haunt me.

Do you like urban fantasy but are sick of all the clichés that usually come with it?  Well, have I got the book for you!

The Summoning starts out as a typical urban fantasy novel: the protagonist, Chloe, seeing something no one else can see.  But soon the plot twists and Chloe ends up in a group home where all is not as it seems.  When Chloe learns the truth about Lyle House, she decides to act, but is betrayed by someone she thought was her friend.

Chloe is a realistic and believable character with flaws that will help readers identify with her.  She can be kind and caring, but also selfish and petty.  It is these seemingly contradictory characteristics that make her such a complex, believable character, which is what Kelley Armstrong was going for.

The only thing I think fell short was the fact that there was never really an adequate explanation for the source of Chloe’s powers.  It may just be me, but I like it when writers explain the source of magic in their books.  It makes the world-building seem a bit more complete.  What do you think?  Do you like it when writers explain magic to you?

I give this book 4/5 stars.

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