Review: Return to the Dark House (Dark House #2) by Laurie Faria Stolarz

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Book Title: Return to the Dark House
Author: Laurie Faria Stolarz
Published Date: July 21st, 2015
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Genre: YA Horror
Series: Book 2 in Dark House duology
Book Link: Goodreads
Purchase Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository

Synopsis from Goodreads
Ivy Jensen survived the Dark House once, but can she make it out a second time?

Two months have passed since Ivy narrowly escaped the Nightmare Elf’s grip, but the memories of Parker, Natalie, Shayla, Frankie, and Garth continue to haunt her. Their killer is still out there—somewhere. The police trail has gone cold, though, and it’s up to Ivy to piece together the clues to find him.

When a cryptic video arrives in her inbox, Ivy soon finds herself back in the spotlight, this time on a twisted scavenger hunt through the dark, ancient halls of a long-forgotten Gothic school building. Ivy’s not alone, either. Taylor Monroe has returned to the scene. But can Taylor be trusted? Or is she another pawn in the Nightmare Elf’s deadly game?

Laurie Faria Stolarz crafts a mesmerizing thriller that will leave readers looking over their shoulders.

Disclaimer: Library book.

Review
I don’t know if you guys remember, but I really enjoyed Welcome to the Dark House so when I heard that it was getting a sequel, I was thrilled. I couldn’t wait to dive back into this world.

Guys, the wait was so worth it!

They added an element to the story that made it even scarier and I actually loved that. This time, it wasn’t the Nightmare Elf that scared the ever loving hell out of me. It was this mysterious E. W and the boy called Ricky. The origin of these boys took this story down a path that I was not expecting.

I think the thing I was most excited about was that we got to meet Taylor this time around. She had been the girl who had left before things had even really begun. I knew after finishing Welcome to the Dark House, that she probably was important to the story. I was really curious to see what her part was in all of this.

This book was even more terrifying than the first book in this series. I would love to talk about certain things, but I don’t want to spoil you guys, so I’ll just say, READ IT. If you haven’t read the first book, then binge-read both books, one right after the other. If you enjoy horror books, you will not be sorry. 5 stars to this utterly terrifying but at the same time, captivating book.

TTT: Top Ten Books I’m Looking Forward To In 2015

This feature is hosted by the ladies of The Broke and the Bookish
This list was one of the easiest & hardest lists I’ve ever had to compile. I definitely went over ten books with this list, and probably could have gone up to 20 if I hadn’t stopped myself.

Proceed to the list I’ve created for today!

 Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge
-Yes, yes, YES. I am so excited about this book. I ended up really enjoying Cruel Beauty and was super excited to hear about this book as well. Glad I have an e-ARC-
Conspiracy of Blood and Smoke (Prisoner of Night & Fog #2) by Anne Blankman
-I loved, LOVED Prisoner of Night and Fog so when I got an e-ARC of the sequel I was so excited and happy. I cannot wait to go back into this world that Blankman created-
 Return to the Dark House (Welcome to the Dark House #2) by Laurie Faria Stolarz
-This book ended up surprising me in a really great way, so I’m excited to see where the author takes the story in book 2-
Ensnared (Splintered #3) by A.G. Howard
-Cannot wait for this book. I’ve loved the first two books of this trilogy and given how book 2 ended, I cannot wait to see what happens next!-
 The Devil You Know by Trish Doller
-I am forever grateful to my Secret Sister who managed to nab an ARC of this book for me. Not only do I have it in my possession, it’s personalized by Doller for me. I have enjoyed Doller’s previous books and am excited to see what this book holds-
A Court of Thorns and Roses by S. J. Maas
-Um, just LOOK at that cover. Absolutely stunning. I haven’t read Maas’ previous books, but I definitely want to at some point in 2015. I am so excited about this book. I can only hope the inside matches the gorgeousness of the cover-
 Things We Know By Heart by Jessi Kirby
-GIMMIE! Oh wait, I have an e-ARC of this one. I love books that have organ donation as a plot. It’s a personal thing as I have serious heart problems and may need a heart transplant someday-
Made You Up by Francesca Zappia
-I got drawn in by the cover first, and then I read the synopsis. I love books that feature mental illness. I hope it depicts it accurately or I’ll be disappointed-
An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
-Gorgeous cover alert! I am so excited about this book and I think I’m going to love this book. Cannot wait to get my hands on it-
Making Pretty by Corey Ann Haydu
-Whatever this woman writes, I’ll be excited to read it. Plus, that cover is really cool- 
What You Left Behind by Jessica Verdi
-Yet another author whose book I’ll always read. This book sounds EXACTLY like something I’ll love. I cannot wait to get my hands on this one-
The Wicked Will Rise (Dorothy Must Die #2) by Danielle Paige
-I loved Dorothy Must Die and I am so excited to get my hands on this sequel. I can only hope it is as awesome as the first book was-

The Orphan Queen (The Orphan Queen #1) by Jodi Meadows
-This book looks amazing. I read the sample I got from Edelweiss and was obsessed with it. Now I need the full version. Plus, look at that cover, guys?-

So what books are you really looking forward to in 2015? If you did a TTT, leave me the links so I can go check out your list.

Review: Welcome to the Dark House (Welcome to the Dark House #1) by Laurie Faria Stolarz

Book Title: Welcome to the Dark House
Author: Laurie Faria Stolarz
Published Date: July 22nd, 2014
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Genre: YA Horror
Series: Book One in Welcome to the Dark House duology
Book Link: Goodreads
Synopsis from Goodreads:
What’s your worst nightmare?

For Ivy Jensen, it’s the eyes of a killer that haunt her nights. For Parker Bradley, it’s bloodthirsty sea serpents that slither in his dreams.

And for seven essay contestants, it’s their worst nightmares that win them an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look at director Justin Blake’s latest, confidential project. Ivy doesn’t even like scary movies, but she’s ready to face her real-world fears. Parker’s sympathetic words and perfect smile help keep her spirits up. . . at least for now.

Not everyone is so charming, though. Horror-film fanatic Garth Vader wants to stir up trouble. It’s bad enough he has to stay in the middle of nowhere with this group—the girl who locks herself in her room; the know-it-all roommate; “Mister Sensitive”; and the one who’s too cheery for her own good. Someone has to make things interesting.

Except, things are already a little weird. The hostess is a serial-killer look-alike, the dream-stealing Nightmare Elf is lurking about, and the seventh member of the group is missing.

By the time Ivy and Parker realize what’s really at stake, it’s too late to wake up and run.

Disclaimer: I received this book from Disney Hyperion via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Review:
Now this is how you do a horror book. 

I probably enjoyed it even more than I would have originally, because I read it in the dead of night. It was so creepy and I couldn’t put it down. I was up until nearly 4am because I had to know what happened and I had to know how it ended. After finishing it, I found out that it was book one of a duology, so YAY. I cannot wait to go back into this story next year. It’s gonna be a long wait.

It started off normally enough, with us meeting Ivy, Parker, Shayla, Natalie, Garth, Frankie, and there’s a 7th contestant, Taylor, who we don’t see much of in this book. I am definitely hoping we see more of her in book 2 because I think she has a lot to add to the story. The book is split up into six different POV’s and I was worried that I would have difficulty following the individual stories, and I did at first, but it wore off quickly.

Things start getting creepy that night and it only continues into the next day as they arrive at an abandoned amusement park. A whole lot of stuff goes down, and it’s truly scary stuff, I mean I had nightmares after I finished the book because of the stuff that happens in the amusement park.

Oh let’s not forget Nightmare Elf, hands down the scariest part of the book for me. It made me think of what would happen if you mixed The Elf on the Shelf with Chucky, and that was enough to give me massive goosebumps while I read this book. The Nightmare Elf visited me in my nightmares after I finished the book.

I have to admit, I love being scared in books, so I was really glad I read this book. I am seriously excited for book 2, and it’s definitely going to be a long wait, especially given the cliffhanger that this book ended in. It was a near perfect read for me, and I’m giving it 4.5 stars. If you like the Horror genre, I would definitely recommend this book. If you are easily scared, I’d avoid this book.