20 September 2018

Small Spaces by Katherine Arden (Musical Playlist)

Series: N/A
# of Pages: 256
Publication: September 25, 2018
Source: Copy provided by publisher
Genre: Middle Grade, Horror
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Bestselling adult author of The Bear and the Nightingale makes her middle grade debut with a creepy, spellbinding ghost story destined to become a classic After suffering a tragic loss, eleven-year-old Ollie only finds solace in books. So when she happens upon a crazed woman at the river threatening to throw a book into the water, Ollie doesn't think--she just acts, stealing the book and running away. As she begins to read the slender volume, Ollie discovers a chilling story about a girl named Beth, the two brothers who both loved her, and a peculiar deal made with "the smiling man," a sinister specter who grants your most tightly held wish, but only for the ultimate price. Ollie is captivated by the tale until her school trip the next day to Smoke Hollow, a local farm with a haunting history all its own. There she stumbles upon the graves of the very people she's been reading about. Could it be the story about the smiling man is true? Ollie doesn't have too long to think about the answer to that. On the way home, the school bus breaks down, sending their teacher back to the farm for help. But the strange bus driver has some advice for the kids left behind in his care: "Best get moving. At nightfall they'll come for the rest of you." Nightfall is, indeed, fast descending when Ollie's previously broken digital wristwatch, a keepsake reminder of better times, begins a startling countdown and delivers a terrifying message: RUN. Only Ollie and two of her classmates heed the bus driver's warning. As the trio head out into the woods--bordered by a field of scarecrows that seem to be watching them--the bus driver has just one final piece of advice for Ollie and her friends: "Avoid large places. Keep to small." And with that, a deliciously creepy and hair-raising adventure begins.

First let me start by saying that this book was AMAZING. I enjoyed every single book and I must confess that it really did scare me. I don't find many authors or books that are capable of making the hairs on my arm stand up. Instead of doing a review I've come up with a playlist of 5 songs that I aligns with the plot, characters, and theme of the book.

This Is Halloween: This song is not only one of my favorites, but it also best describes the atmosphere of the book. While it doesn't take place during Halloween, I definitely got some creepy vibes from all the scarecrows in the book.

Come Little Children: Okay, so this song not only freaks me out, but it definitely fits perfectly with the book. As Ollie and her classmates are spending time at the farm, they eventually are lured into a pretty bad situation where their bus breaks down and they have the possibility of being kidnapped by the smiling man and his associates. 

God Must Have Spent: So this song is a little more sentimental and while it doesn't sound as though it would fit into the parameters of the book, it reminds of the relationship Ollie had with her mom. They were really close and I know that she looked up to her mom and valued her so much. N'SYNC wrote this song for their moms and I think that the lyrics work perfectly with how Ollie feels about her mom. 

Thank You For Being A Friend: This song doesn't even need an explanation. I loved that Ollie went from being a loner to actually making friends. Their friendship is beautiful and I'm glad that it was the friendship that helped her make it through dealing with the smiling man and the loss of her mother.

Thriller: This list honestly wouldn't be the same without Thriller. Every time I hear this song I think about those scary behind pumpkins and how they were trying to kidnap children. It's literally the perfect song for this book. 

I honestly can't say enough about this book. It was completely and utterly fantastic. If you're looking for a good, spooky middle grade novel than this is the book to choose. 


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