The Invited By Jennifer McMahon

I am going to start off by saying after reading the book jacket and a small synopsis, I thought this was going to be a true ghost story, with jumps and descriptive visuals that would leave you jumping at the smallest sounds, BUT it was not. However, it was a decent ghost story that contained a lot of twists and turns.

The story starts off with you being introduced to Helen and her husband Nate. The two were both teachers living a quiet life until Helen’s father passes and leaves her questioning her life choices. She decides to go back to the country and away from city life. With Helen’s background of construction and house remodeling from working with her father, the young couple decides to build their own house and settle on a piece of land in a small rural town in Vermont, near a swamp.

As Helen and Nate begin to settle in and start the renovations to their land, weird things begin to happen in the trailer that the two are living in, as their house is being belt. Belonging begin to go missing, strange noises are heard outside their trailer and Nate sees a white deer that he can’t seem to photograph, while Helen even believes to see have seen a shrouded women near the swamp.

Things begin to get interesting when Helen starts to investigate the history of the land that they acquired. That is where the ghost story begins and the real interesting parts of the story were, for me at least. Hattie Breckenridge was a witch that lived in the swamp area that Helen and Nate now occupy and now “haunts” the area. Helen finds out about Hattie’s death which was very violent and wants to know more of her story and her heritage.

The story has a few other VERY notable characters. Olive, a girl that befriends Nate and Helen, along with her dad and aunt, Riley, who helps Helen acquire antique pieces of framework or household items to include in her house; many of which have a connection to Hattie. Lastly, without giving the whole plot away, you learn that Olive’s mom has left her. No one has seen her throughout the small town.

Each new item brought inside the home, causes Helen to see more of Hattie. As the story unfolds you begin to realize that the story is less supernatural and more on the mystery surrounding Olive’s moms disappearance. While I am all for good twist and turns, I was disappointed by the lack of actual supernatural elements from the complete story. However, for those who like suspense more that supernatural elements, this novel would be perfect for you.

My Ratings: 2.5 out of 5. I would have preferred more scares and would have given it a 3 if it had just a bit more, but the story wasn’t bad and it kept my attention to the end.

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