Hollow by Rhonda Parrish


My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Many thanks to Net Galley and Tyche Books for a chance to review this book.

Hollow is YA horror fiction that hits all the right notes. Personally, I have not held much stock in the classification of YA and this book kind of reinstates it. Well, for someone who can still read and watch Harry Potter any number of times, YA classification is a moot point for me. Even so, Hollow by Rhonda Parrish is clearly a book that can be read by all fans of horror fiction.

Morgan has lost her brother Aric in an accident. At 16 years, of course high school is a nightmare, her ex-boyfriend, Keith, making her life more miserable, her 7-yr old sister Amy requiring constant support and parenting as her mom is bound to a wheel chair and suffering from depression. When the whole world seems dark and gloomy, the only sunshine in her life is her best friend Sevren who has been with her thru thick and thin. Morgan’s passion for running and her penchant for photography always takes her around an abandoned hospital which is the local haunted and ‘dare you’ spot for the children. Rumors abound the place about Dr.Woods, haunting the hospital after having died in a most horrific and gruesome way. Morgan has always steered clear of the place but during a routine run, trying to avoid confrontation with Keith, she trespasses into the hospital and finds an old antique camera. A very peculiar off-color magpie seems to be following/protecting her but Morgan is not too sure of the bird’s warnings. Before long Morgan realizes that the camera has adverse effects and that the horror in her life has just begun. When Amy leaves a selfie for Morgan to find, she knows, come what may, the cause of the ugliness brought about by the camera has to found and with the help of Sevren sets about for the task.

The story works well as psychological horror as Morgan is left to face her worst nightmares and every obstacle in her path a quest to save her friends and her sister. Rhonda Parrish has written a well-defined horror fiction and being YA, the gore and violence is conveniently absent. It is more of mind involved horror that keeps the reader hooked and turning the pages quickly. But what I absolutely loved about the story is the deep friendship between Morgan and Sevren, that gives a generous feeling of warmth.
Recommended for all fans of horror fiction.

Blurb

A car accident shattered sixteen-year-old Morgan’s family. Now her brother’s dead, her mom’s paralyzed in more ways than one, her dad lives at work and her seven-year-old sister Amy tries too freaking hard to salvage everything. What’s more, high school is its own special kind of hell, where her ex-boyfriend delights in spreading rumors that shred her reputation and make her feel like a loser.

When she finds an old camera in a creepy abandoned hospital, it seems like her luck is finally changing. And it is changing–from bad to worse. Because of course it is. Each time Morgan photographs one of her classmates they become corrupted versions of themselves. It’s like the camera steals their goodness, their essence, and leaves them hollow.

Then her sister uses the camera to take a selfie.

No matter what the cost, Morgan will find a way to reverse the effects of the cursed camera and save Amy, before her already-fractured family completely self-destructs.

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