Saturday, March 12, 2016

Book Review: Shutter by Courtney Alameda

Micheline Helsing is a tetrachromat—a girl who sees the auras of the undead in a prismatic spectrum. As one of the last descendants of the Van Helsing lineage, she has trained since childhood to destroy monsters both corporeal and spiritual: the corporeal undead go down by the bullet, the spiritual undead by the lens. With an analog SLR camera as her best weapon, Micheline exorcises ghosts by capturing their spiritual energy on film. She's aided by her crew: Oliver, a techno-whiz and the boy who developed her camera's technology; Jude, who can predict death; and Ryder, the boy Micheline has known and loved forever.

When a routine ghost hunt goes awry, Micheline and the boys are infected with a curse known as a soulchain. As the ghostly chains spread through their bodies, Micheline learns that if she doesn't exorcise her entity in seven days or less, she and her friends will die. Now pursued as a renegade agent by her monster-hunting father, Leonard Helsing, she must track and destroy an entity more powerful than anything she's faced before . . . or die trying. (Summary from

I actually read this a few months ago, but I liked it so much I wanted to make sure I did a blog post about it. I could not put this book down. While I was reading it, all I wanted to be doing was read it. I read on my lunch break and while cooking dinner. It didn't take long, and I was done and hungering for more. I looked up the author, Courtney Alameda, hoping that she had a sequel in the works and discovered with astonishment that she was a first time author. This was her FIRST book. But this was not the work of an amateur writer. I loved every minute of it.

Micheline is good with a camera. But she doesn't use it to merely take pictures. She uses it to capture the energy of ghosts on film. What I loved most about these stories is that they incorporated modern day elements and technology into classic supernatural stories. I especially loved how she involved the Van Helsings and Stokers together in this modern day tale, the paranormal classics mixed with science and mythology. I also liked the Micheline was also just a teenager trying to grieve over the horrific death of her mother and brother, while also dealing with her father's residual anger, judgement, and abuse.

Honestly, Shutter was a stunning story, great for fans of the supernatural and paranormal. Also, it is a little scary, but not quite as scary as the cover makes it out to be.

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