Book Reviews of The Harrowing

The Harrowing
The Harrowing
Author: Alexandra Sokoloff
ISBN-13: 9780312357498
ISBN-10: 0312357494
Publication Date: 10/30/2007
Pages: 288
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.

4.1 stars, based on 49 ratings
Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

14 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Harrowing on + 301 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
I got caught up in this book and raced through it. Like many horror stories, the beginning and middle are better than the ending. Not that the ending is bad, it's just that the thrill of a good horror novel is in the wickedly delicious sitting-on-the-edge-of-your-seat, ready-to-jump anticipation. Endings, by their very nature, wrap things up. There aren't supposed to be loose ends, so there's nothing left to give me the shivers. So the author of The Harrowing isn't a threat to Shirley Jackson's place in the horror genre, but she's still worth reading.
reviewed The Harrowing on
Helpful Score: 4
This is SUCH a good book-I read it through in a hurry because I just couldn't put it down!! The characters and plot really keep you reading and you won't be disappointed.
reviewed The Harrowing on + 252 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
Really good ghost story, recommended.
reviewed The Harrowing on + 5 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
it was the first time i hace read this aurthor and i will be waiting for her next. it was a deep moving read at the same time scary. a must read
reviewed The Harrowing on + 424 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Very scary. It grabbed me from page one and held me to the end. I can still "hear" the last sentence of the book in my head. "Anyone want to play?" Gave me the shivers.
reviewed The Harrowing on + 11 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
The Harrowing is Alexandra Sokoloff's first novel and it is an awesome start. Within the first pages the eerie atmosphere of Mendenhall is set. Mendenhall is an old Victorian mansion which was converted years ago to a dorm on the campus of Baird College. Not far from the dorm on the campus is a long forgotten clearing where there is a marble bench with 5 names carved into it.

It is the day before Thanksgiving and everyone is leaving for home and the long holiday weekend. Robin is not going home and believes she is alone in the dorm. That first night she is desolate. The atmosphere is oppressive in the dorm and Robin is depressed. She discovers after taking some pills and alcohol both totally out of character for her that she is not alone. There are 4 other students staying the weekend at Mendenhall. All have family issues and would rather not go home for the holiday.

There is something or someone else staying at Mendenhall that weekend too.

All the students gather in the study where Lisa found a Ouiji Board. This Board is an original from the 20's, well used and even burned on the edges. Lisa convinces Robin that they should play starting a sequence of events that cannot be reversed. While they play the boys are extremely skeptical but there is a definite presence helping answer the questions.

The presence has a nameâ¦â¦â¦â¦Zachary.

Harrowing - causing physical or psychological pain.
That is exactly what happens to the remaining students at Mendenhall beginning with a simple Ouiji Board game. Unexplained disturbances, presences, and even death follow that one 'harmless' game.

Ms. Sokoloff set the tone of The Harrowing from the beginning pages and never stopped the pace throughout. She was able to bring the reader into Mendenhall feeling the tension and anxiety of this one weekend from hell. Once the book is opened it is impossible to put it down until it is finished. I hope we see more from Ms. Sokoloff.
reviewed The Harrowing on + 471 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Like so many books of this ilk (which reminded me of David Ambrose's "Superstition" which also features a Ouija Board) it sort of fell apart at the end. But getting there was a good read, and I marginally recommend it to people who enjoy ghost stories. One HUGE problem I had with this though -- and it took me out of the narrative time and again -- was the author's use of the word "jolt" way, way too often. In fact I was jolted by her overuse of the word. Someone needs to buy this author or her editor a thesaurus, quick.
reviewed The Harrowing on + 144 more book reviews
Good horrow story. Starts a little slow, but does give you the suspense and "what is it"I liked it and have put her 2nd book on wish list. Fast reading, but not filled with all the stuff you usually skip through anyway.
reviewed The Harrowing on + 114 more book reviews
Good, quick moving ghost story set in a college dorm with a few outcast students.
reviewed The Harrowing on + 16 more book reviews
It's not entirely unpredictable, but it still serves up some pretty chilling and creepy scenes. It's a haunted house story with everything from poltergeist activity to Ouija boards to demonic possession. Sokoloff even throws in some information about the origins of man, in terms of the views of a religion or two. All in all, it's a very entertaining, spooky, fast read.
reviewed The Harrowing on + 636 more book reviews
Well, this book was a little spooky and a little silly. It read very much like your typical horror movie, but that was what made it fun! A perfect read for a stormy night, home alone; I enjoyed it quite a bit, actually. It was a lot of fun, with a surprising amount of twists and turns for a short book. Interesting and chilling - Ouija boards always make for creepy stories!
reviewed The Harrowing on + 2408 more book reviews
creepy, scary,--you won't want to touch a ouija board after this.
reviewed The Harrowing on + 120 more book reviews
An excellent book!
Five college students decide to spend Thanksgiving weekend at the dorm instead of going home to their disfunctional families. Bordom sets in and someone finds an Ouija Board... Let's play.
This story really sucks you in. It is very well written, realistic horror.
The five students consider themselves outcasts or discardeed for varous reason. And their mental states make them especially suseptable to the power of the Ouija Board.
The being they contact calls itself Zachary. With a little research they discover there had been a fire in 1920 in their dorm and five students died. A Zachary Prince being one of them. But is it really the ghost of a long dead student they are contacting?
A quick read. Good all the way to the end.
reviewed The Harrowing on + 392 more book reviews
Now this was one fantastic book. It was made into a movie as well. I knew beforehand that this was the case but I have a rule that I read the book first, movie second. Of course when I do this, I constantly criticize the movie every time saying out loud, "That didn't happen, hey, that wasn't like that in the book." LOL.

I watched the trailer on YouTube but haven't seen the movie as of yet. I look forward to it though.
If your looking for a good spooky tale that you can about read in one sitting this is it. Perfect for Thanksgiving as it takes place during that time. Five students have stayed behind at their college during Thanksgiving break. In one form or another these students are outcasts, or the ones who have some tough issues going on in their personal lives. A massive rain storm as moved in and the students inadvertently come together in the main living room, beside a roaring fire. All would have been well until the Ouija board comes out. Bad idea. What they conjure leads them on a roller coaster ride towards potential death.

Loved the ending of the book. Its one of those stories that stays with you. The kind you think about days later, wishing you could read some more, wishing for another page or even just to read it again. I recommend this book!