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Erik Therme. Kindle Press, $2.99 e-book (220p) ASIN B01C3FFIYC
Therme’s (Mortom) first book for teens has a promising premise but doesn’t make the most of it. Kaylee has just moved to a new town with her mother following her parents’ divorce. After some prodding, Kaylee agrees to go to a party, where host Jamie introduces a scavenger hunt to be played in Resthaven, an abandoned retirement home. After an argument between Kaylee and Jamie, the party attendees find themselves locked inside and separated from each other. While looking for the others, Kaylee stumbles on a young boy, as well as an old man who seems determined to keep them locked in Resthaven. Therme’s characters have a wide variety of realistic backgrounds and circumstances, but while the setup naturally leads to some tense moments, the story too often strays into melodrama and heated emotional outbursts. The girls often act younger than their age would suggest (oddly, they are described as being both 15 years old and in middle school), leading to some dubious choices, including hiding in a freezer and participating in what’s essentially a kidnapping. Ages 12–up. (BookLife)

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly on 04/14/2017