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by Dale Bailey
New American Library, December 2003
384 pages
ISBN: 0451210794

Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

The towers of the Dreamland Housing Project were built to give poor people a decent place to live. This didn't happen. Crack dealers and gangs quickly took over the buildings and soon Dreamland became just another slum.

Strangely enough, one of the buildings in the project had more of a bad reputation then the usual. People were killed, raped, and murdered in this building, but the people who committed these crimes had no real knowledge of performing the acts. The residents of the building soon started to move out. Some mentioned they left because of the building's notoriety, some said they moved away because it wasn't safe, but in fact, they were all afraid to say why they really moved. The building was haunted. Whispers could be heard in its elevator shaft, and even though the elevator had been broken for years, it sometimes was heard to run.

Soon the building was completely deserted. No one squatted in it, none of the gangs or drug dealers did any business in it, even dogs were afraid to enter it. Everyone in the neighborhood knew that the one building in the Dreamland projects was just waiting to become fully awake, and when that occurred, they all were afraid of what would happen then.

Eventually all of the vacated Dreamland and its towers were slated to be bulldozed. One by one the buildings were torn down except for the one haunted building and that was left standing because multi-millionaire, Ramsey Lomax, paid the city to stop the demolition. Lomax was curious about all the stories he'd heard and wanted to see what was going on himself, so he gathered some special people to live in the building and discover its secrets.

Four people were invited to spend two weeks in the building with Lomax: a doctor, a writer, a psychic, and an ex-police officer. All of them had dark secrets that led them to agree to stay there. They were all searching for some kind of answer and thought that the building might give it to them. Lomax too had a secret and the building's lobby held the answer that he needed to know.

HOUSE OF BONES brings back the good old fashion haunted house story. It's surprisingly well written with an intricate plot, solid characters, and a fantastic sense of suspense. Dale Bailey goes into a lot of much-needed detail for each person and he tells us enough to suspect what's going to happen but he manages to leave a lot of things unsaid so that when the inevitable happens the reader is still surprised. Masterfully done!

Most of the book is a build-up to the last 100 pages when most of the action occurs. But take it from me, just because the really good stuff happens at the very end, it doesn't mean that the first couple of 100 pages were boring. Far from it. Very far from it!

If you're in the mood for a good horror HOUSE OF BONES is a book not to be missed. It's well written, well thought out, and so scary it will knock your socks off!

Reviewed by Sharon Katz, December 2003

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Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)

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