Speed date with Eleanor: SOMETHING STRANGE AND DEADLY by Susan Dennard

Posted 23 August, 2012 | Mary @ TheBookSwarm | | 17 Comments

Thursday is Speed Date Night. What’s a Book Speed Date? It’s a quickie review–about 150 words or so–of any genre book. If you want to join in the speed dating fun, sign up in the Linky below. The speed date is all about “meeting” new books.
YA Historical Paranormal
388 pages, hardcover
Available now (July 2012)
Publisher: HarperTeen
Review copy provided by publisher for honest review
The year is 1876, and there’s something strange and deadly loose in Philadelphia…

Eleanor Fitt has a lot to worry about. Her brother has gone missing, her family has fallen on hard times, and her mother is determined to marry her off to any rich young man who walks by. But this is nothing compared to what she’s just read in the newspaper—

The Dead are rising in Philadelphia.

And then, in a frightening attack, a zombie delivers a letter to Eleanor…from her brother.

Whoever is controlling the Dead army has taken her brother as well. If Eleanor is going to find him, she’ll have to venture into the lab of the notorious Spirit-Hunters, who protect the city from supernatural forces. But as Eleanor spends more time with the Spirit-Hunters, including their maddeningly stubborn yet handsome inventor, Daniel, the situation becomes dire. And now, not only is her reputation on the line, but her very life may hang in the balance.

I wasn’t sure about this one (more zombies–a bit yawn-worthy lately) but I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. Eleanor’s mother made me want to tear my hair out (sooo annoying) and several of the other characters were rather stereotypical and flat but Eleanor herself was a determined and intriguing young woman (of marriageable age, of course). I liked her spunk and ability to sneak away from her overbearing mother to play detective (I rather hoped she’d flaunt society’s rules altogether but she was too genteel for that).

Mixing together historical setting, mysterious zombie hunters, a missing brother who may or may not be involved in the zombies rising, and a string of gruesome deaths then adding in a rainy day and a comfy couch makes for one happy reader.

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17 Responses to “Speed date with Eleanor: SOMETHING STRANGE AND DEADLY by Susan Dennard”

  1. I wasn’t sure about this one initially either Mary, as I’m not a zombie fan at all. However, I loved this book even if I did figure out who the necromancer was almost immediately, and I actually liked that the romance didn’t quite progress as I wanted it to. She threw me for a bit of a loop at the end there and that paradoxically made me happy and frustrated:) Win!

    • Zombies are hit or miss with me–I don’t search them out usually but this one fell into my lap. You know, I liked the way the romance worked (or didn’t work), too!

  2. I’m so happy you liked this one Mary! I’ve been debating about reading this but I think I’ll definitely give it a go. Because the zombies and the historical bits of this book make me want to read it now!

  3. I REALLY want to read this! I didn’t think it would be my thing but after reading a ton of reviews I’m dying to get my hands on it! I’m happy to see another great review!

  4. Hmmmm sounds a bit hit or miss and perhaps too stereotypical in some aspects… still kind of fun at the same time. I’m not a huge zombie fan at all, but I’ve heard from a few people who really enjoyed it.

  5. Nice review! Eleanor sounds like a fabulous protagonist, and historical settings are always fun. I’ve got this one on my shelf, so hopefully I’ll get to it soon!