Sunday, September 17, 2017

Review: Haunting the Deep by Adriana Mather

How to Hang a Witch, Book Two
by Adriana Mather
Knopf Books for Young Readers
YA Thriller/Paranormal
368 pages

OCTOBER 3rd, 2017!!!

The Titanic meets the delicious horror of Ransom Riggs and the sass of Mean Girls in this follow-up to the #1 New York Times bestseller How to Hang a Witch, in which a contemporary teen finds herself a passenger on the famous “ship of dreams”—a story made all the more fascinating because the author’s own relatives survived the doomed voyage.

Samantha Mather knew her family’s connection to the infamous Salem Witch Trials might pose obstacles to an active social life. But having survived one curse, she never thought she’d find herself at the center of a new one.

This time, Sam is having recurring dreams about the Titanic . . . where she’s been walking the deck with first-class passengers, like her aunt and uncle. Meanwhile, in Sam’s waking life, strange missives from the Titanic have been finding their way to her, along with haunting visions of people who went down with the ship.

Ultimately, Sam and the Descendants, along with some help from heartthrob Elijah, must unravel who is behind the spell that is drawing her ever further into the dream ship . . . and closer to sharing the same grim fate as its ghostly passengers.


Ghosts, mystery, witchcraft and even a bit of mystery weave together seamlessly to form a grabbing read.

Samantha hasn't completely gotten past the terrors she suffered only months before, but things appear to be looking up. When she discovers a letter which reveals that some of her relatives had survived the Titanic, things start running amok. Not only do ghosts appear but other, even stranger and spookier things occur. When the warning comes that death is on its way, Sam has no clue how she's going to escape.

I did not read the first book in this series (a mistake I'm definitely going to correct), but I still didn't have too much trouble getting into this story. So it can be read as a stand-alone, but some background information is missing. 

The author does a great job at mixing the easy read style of modern YA with a dark, multi-layered and thrilling mystery. Samantha and her friends come across as everyday teens even though the magic and dark past of Salem and its families hangs in the background like a constant cloud. The fact the author herself has both Salem and Titanic ties adds a nice touch, which gives this tale a bit more spice. And the author doesn't let this tie disappoint. The wonderful, dark touch of Salem's past is ever present, while the completely differing atmosphere of the Titanic filters in with its own touch. It's a well done mixture, which heaps on the possibilities.

The scenes and characters of the Titanic come across beautifully. Sam's version of the ship and life there draw in with the lovely descriptions. There's all sorts of delicious tidbits of historical information peppered in, which make real Titanic fans and history buffs' hearts beat faster. Still, this world is very easy to picture and get lost in. The flip-flops between the realities slide together nicely and create a thrilling atmosphere. Add this with the twisty plot and mysterious pieces, which are difficult to shove together, and the tension is complete. It's hard to put this one down, since every scene brings something new and it's hard to guess where the entire thing will end. 

Summed up, this is an engaging read for YA mystery/magic/paranormal friends. It has the dramatic feel of a YA read but layers the mystery and intrigue masterfully to create an engaging plot. I hope to see more of Sam and her friends in the future.

All About the Author!

Adriana Mather is the 12th generation of Mathers in America, and as such her family has their fingers in many of its historical pies – the Mayflower, the Salem Witch Trials, the Titanic, the Revolutionary War, and the wearing of curly white wigs. Also, Adriana co-owns a production company, Zombot Pictures, in LA that has made three feature films in three years. Her first acting scene in a film ever was with Danny Glover, and she was terrified she would mess it up. In addition, her favorite food is pizza and she has too many cats. (from Goodreads)

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