I have been eagerly awaiting the second instalment of the paranormal thriller/horror trilogy, KASSIDY BELL by Lynda O’Rourke. In need of help with her finances since her father died, Kassidy volunteers to help with a drug trial. But little does she know just what danger awaits for her around the corner. After a bloody and gory battle with volunteers and staff at the clinic who appear to be demonic, Kassidy and her friends are now on the run from the demons, ‘cleaners’, and the police, who are believed to be involved with the cover up of what is really happening at Cruor Pharma. Strap yourselves in for another suspenseful ride as the gang who survived face more horror! (Please scroll down and enter our giveaway for a SIGNED PAPERBACK copy of DWELL – Book 2 of the Kassidy Bell trilogy!)
“…. I….feel like I’m in a bad dream…. like I’ve stepped out of reality and into hell.” (From, Drug – Book One of the Kassidy Bell trilogy.)
Author: Lynda O’Rourke
Genre: Psychological thriller, horror
Release date: May 30th, 2015
Released by: Ravenwoodgreys
Length: 187 pages
Blurb: Running from the shadows of Cruor Pharma, Kassidy Bell soon discovers that it’s not just the cleaners and police that are after her. With the drug VA20 slowly working its way through her veins, Kassidy has become an irresistible target to all those looking for somewhere to dwell.
Desperate to find a place of safety and somewhere to rest, Kassidy and the other volunteers set off in search of the Bishop’s house – the last place they know of that Max’s brother, Robert, may have headed for.
But who can Kassidy trust? Can she even trust her own decisions and feelings, especially when it comes to Doctor Ben Fletcher?
‘DWELL’ – Book 2 in the #1 bestselling paranormal thriller series by Lynda O’Rourke.
Lynda O’Rourke had us all gripped with her début, DRUG, the shocks and suspense, the fear and horror. And, she has done it again with DWELL. After cutting it fine and managing to escape the hospital, Cruor Pharma, Kassidy is now on the run from the demonic staff and the police helping to cover up what is happening there. It is certainly not a drug trial in the ‘normal’ sense that she believed she was volunteering for. Now with her veins filling up with the thick, black VA20, her body has survived and is the perfect host for a demon to ‘dwell’. But, Kassidy is also concerned about what will happen once her whole body is full of the stuff.
Max’s brother, Robert, had previously had the VA10 drug and had survived. The Bishop’s house was the last place they knew he was going to and Max was desperate to see his brother again. And so, Kassidy, Max, Raven and Jude aim to visit the Bishop’s house to find out if Robert had made it there, and where else he may have left for.
On their journey they stop off at, Kassidy’s friend, Heather’s flat to clean up. During which there are some scary scenes with plenty of dark horror. One scene happens when Kassidy is in the shower, and although her friends hear the sounds of a struggle, there is nothing else out of place to convince them it was anything paranormal. Kassidy questions what she has experienced but her gut still tells her it was real. The horror scenes are shocking and can make you a little jumpy due to their detailed descriptions that make them realistic, and making it a perfect read for this genre. The reader will certainly be on full alert reading Dwell.
The gang all share a little hope that being at the Bishop’s house, around holiness, will keep out the demons. However, things are not always as they seem. And, staying with the Bishop and Mrs. Gables was a little awkward and eerie. There was a dark atmosphere from the large, quiet but old home they lived in. It was unclear whether Mrs. Gables wanted them to leave or stay. She doesn’t seem too pleased of their arrival. And what is it with keeping the fires constantly lit in every room? Not to mention the amount of birds they have getting stuck in the chimneys, and the noise from the derelict third floor. The atmosphere of the house and of the dialogue between the characters is brilliant for creating the tension and fear of the reader.
Aside from the horror, Dwell is also quite an emotional part of the gang’s ordeal. Kassidy is frustrated, angry, scared and exhausted from everything they have all been through, what she has witnessed and what her mind is trying to understand about it all. Lynda O’Rourke‘s language and description is so powerful and moving at this point that the reader feels everything that Kassidy does as she reflects on what has happened to her and her friends. We feel her despair as well as her strength.
(Whilst her friends are taking some time to rest)“… Why couldn’t I rid myself of these awful images that were screwing up my head? Why wouldn’t my brain just shut down and give me some peace? I could feel myself filling with anger – frustration. I just wanted to sleep. I wanted to escape my own mind and sleep was the only place I could forget. I kicked out at the chair. It topple over – clattering onto the bare floorboards. I didn’t care if I woke the others. Why should they sleep so peacefully? I was fired up. Ready for a fight. I wanted to hit someone – anyone. I wanted to vent my anger. Make them feel the pain I was suffering – hurt them like I was hurting – spill their blood like mine had. I grabbed large clumps of my hair in both fists and yanked down hard, gritting my teeth. I wanted to scream at the top of my voice – yell so hard – go on some mad frenzy – smashing everything up that I came across. I wanted everyone to feel my pain.”
This also shows that sometimes the power of writing in first person is very strong. When the reader knows exactly what is racing through the characters minds it makes it so much easier to connect with and understand them. It brings out more realism and the reader can place themselves in the story, making the danger, the emotions and the action so much more intense. Lynda O’Rourke has used this brilliantly.
Kassidy hasn’t had a perfect life, with her dad being an alcoholic, now this, and so she reaches the point where she is beginning to feel completely broken. She doesn’t know what to do, she just needs someone, some comfort. There is a ‘moment’ between her and Jude as Jude’s character begins to show his more serious, sincere and caring side. However, Kassidy doesn’t really know what she is doing, and it is over before anything serious has begun. I loved this scene. It shows perfectly how Kassidy’s character is flawed, giving in with a moment of weakness. It is something that many of us can relate to or at least understand, making her more believable. It was also great to see the different side of Jude and see his character and his relationship with the others develop.
But, what of Doctor Ben Fletcher? He’s a host to an evil demon, yet he did help Kassidy to escape. Her true feelings, I feel, lie with him. But how can she possibly be anywhere near him? She knows that the true human person is still present inside of him, but the demon could change all of that. Is there still a part of her that wants to see him again?
“…If Ben… had no control over his actions or couldn’t remember the things he did, then could I really blame him for what had happened to me?”
Their hope of survival lies with Doctor Langstone, a demon, yet a doctor who was against the drug trials at Cruor Pharma and left because of them. Maybe he can offer answers, or will be drawn to the group from his demon side. Either way, there will be plenty more horror and surprises. I cannot wait to read book 3, Demon!!
A copy of DWELL was provided by the author for the purpose of a fair and honest review.
Lynda O’Rourke is kindly offering one winner a SIGNED PAPERBACK copy of DWELL (The Kassidy Bell trilogy #2).
For a chance to win all you have to do is type your name in the comments box at the bottom of this post. Alternatively, you can enter on our FACEBOOK page, again by adding your name in the comments of our post on DWELL.
The closing date is Friday 19th June 2015.
The winner will then be randomly chosen and e-mailed (or private messaged on Facebook).
Good luck to all entries! And, a big THANK YOU to Lynda for this great giveaway!
You can find more info, along with my review, on DRUG (The Kassidy Bell trilogy #1) here.
Reviewed by Caroline Barker