The girls were playing with the Frozen Charlotte dolls again.
If you want a fast-paced, gripping Halloween tale to get you through the witching hour this eve, then look no further – Frozen Charlotte is the book for you!
When Sophie and Jay start mucking around with an Ouija board app, they think nothing of it until a haunting voice emerges and devastating events tear Sophie’s world apart. She travels to the Isle of Skye, determined to discover the truth behind the mysterious death of her cousin Rebecca in hope of finding some salvation – but has she just travelled further into the lion’s den?
The premise of this book is genuinely terrifying but Bell has created such an addictive story and written with such an effecting voice that you race through it. I was completely expecting sleepless nights but I managed to survive nightmare-free and I think that’s because I didn’t give myself time to overthink, I just wanted to read on! The pacing of the book is electric, the suspense is unbearable and the atmosphere created is gothic and tense.
There is an unpredictability to all of the characters, meaning that the narrative rollercoasters deliciously throughout. The cousins Cameron, Piper and Lilias are all so different and contradicting that you never know who to trust, putting both Sophie and the reader on the back-foot, second-guessing reality the whole way through the story. I loved the unpredictability of Frozen Charlotte. Just when you think you’ve figured out how, who, what, where and when, Bell pulls you in a completely different direction, unsettling everything you thought you knew!
The only criticism I could level at the book is the opening precursor to the novel (set in 1910). Nothing really happens with the backstory of the Charlottes and it was something I desperately wanted expanding upon. I felt there would have been more terror to the creepy china dolls if their history was embellished with flashbacks but that’s 100% my preference. I promise not having them isn’t detrimental to the tale, it’s just that the story just makes you want to know and understand everything that’s been before and since!
Bell holds her readers right up to the Jumanji-esque ending (where an unsuspecting child is lured towards the suitcase of Charlottes) and as there is a sequel due out next year, here’s hoping for a follow-up that’s just as rewarding a read as the first…