Book Review: Asylum by Madeleine Roux

Daniel Crawford is a high school student attending a summer program at New Hampshire College Prep. He is serious about academics, in particular history. Students in the summer program are staying in the Brookline building, a former insane asylum that the college purchased and turned into a dorm. As soon as Dan arrives in his dorm room, he finds an old photo in his desk drawer of a man with his eyes scratched out. To top it off, his roommate, Felix, seems to be a little unusual.

Soon enough, Dan meets Abby and Jordan who are also attending the NHCP summer program. Abby is an attractive art student who has no problem making friends; in fact, it seems that people are just drawn to her. Jordan is a gay teenage boy who is a budding mathematical genius and lied to his parents about where he was going for the summer. After Felix tips them off, Dan, Abby, and Jordan sneak in to an off-limits area of the dorm. There they discover old inner offices and abandoned asylum rooms, each room more eerie and mysterious than the others. All four end up returning to the old parts of the asylum for more answers as to why they are receiving mysterious notes and photos, as well as intense nightmares that make them all sleep deprived and irritable. Tension builds between them all and each one becomes obsessed with a former resident of the asylum. Eventually, the group uncovers more information about themselves and their families, which may explain why they are all at Brookline. Once Dan, Abby, Jordan, and Felix uncover their resident’s story and the program ends, they go their separate ways. But are they really leaving Brookline behind?

Madeleine Roux’s first young adult series is unforgettable. Relatable characters, creepy scenes, dark plot, and eerie asylum photos make this an excellent thriller! This book has just enough thrill and spine-tingling action for anyone seeking a good scare, but not hardcore horror and gore. Critics of this book have said that it is not as scary as American Horror Story Asylum; that’s because it is NOT American Horror Story. Roux has created a young adult thriller series that will leave readers creeped out and not able to put this book down.

This is an absolute must-read for young adults and for adults looking for an addictive fiction during the Halloween season that will just give you goose bumps!

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