Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon (thoughts)

I adored this book!  In fact, I found myself so completely enthralled in the pages of this novel that I couldn't get anything accomplished while reading it.  The author did such an amazing job with the atmosphere in this book!  It was super creepy and was perfect for a cold winter night.  This book literally gave me the chills at certain points!  I had this book on my most anticipated reads list for 2014 and it certainly didn't disappoint!

This book tells two stories in one:  the story of Sara Harrison Shea who died under mysterious circumstances in 1908 and the story of Ruthie and her family who now live in Sara's old farmhouse.  When Ruthie's mom goes missing it will be up to Ruthie to figure out both the mystery of her mother's disappearance and the mystery of what happened to Sara all those years ago. 

McMahon does a marvelous job of intertwining those two storylines in a way that makes the reader not want to stop reading.  I just had to keep reading because I needed to see what was going to happen next!  And the atmosphere!  This book had this dark creepy tension feel to it that just wouldn't let up.  But my favorite part of the book was the isolated feel that the author created.  She used the snowstorms, the farmhouse, and the two storylines to create this layer of isolation for the characters from the outside world.  It felt like a living, breathing part of the story itself.  I loved it!  When you have two different stories being told, chances are that the reader will prefer one over the other.  Myself, I preferred Ruthie's story as I wanted her to find her mother.  Sara's story was really interesting though because it had hints of the supernatural.  In fact, the author also did a really nice job of taking those hints and managing them in a way that made them almost believable.  Which was quite horrifying when you think about it!  (Those that have already read the book will understand what I mean).  The ending was done quite nicely and while I didn't get all of the resolution that I wanted, I was left feeling satisfied.  Because sometimes it is best to be left guessing, and there were some threads to this book that definitely left me in the dark. 

Books like this are why I adore reading so much.  I am hard pressed to come up with a single complaint for this book so I just won't.  Instead, I will continue to gush because it was that good and this author is fast becoming one of my favorites.  It is early in the year to say this but I'm guessing it will be one of my favorites for the year.  And considering that I'm still thinking about it after finishing it a few weeks ago tells you how good this book really is!  Highly, highly recommended!

Bottom Line:  A book brimming over with atmosphere and creepy tension that kept me caught up within its' pages!

Disclosure:  I was lucky enough to receive a copy of this book for review from the publisher courtesy of NetGalley.  Thoughts are my own!


  1. >>Books like this are why I adore reading so much.

    It's awesome when you read a book that makes you say this! Some years it happens all too rarely, and some years it seems like it's every third book you read.

  2. Wow Sam, you've made me add The Winter People to my wishlist. Sounds fantastic.

  3. Yes, yes and yes! I adored this book as well! And I agree, I think I preferred Ruthies storyline ad well. So glad to get your thoughts on this one. And I do believe it will be in the running for my top reads at the end of the year and I can't wait to see where she goes next!!

  4. So, you think I should read this one? ;-)

  5. I am glad you liked this. I just started the audio earlier today and I all ready enjoying myself!

  6. Totally on my list to read! I do love spooky tales and thought this would be good for the Fall but everyone keeps talking about it I may just try it out sooner rather than later!


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