Hickey of the Beast
By: Isabel Kunkle
Candlemark & Gleam
Connie thought freshman year might suck. She never thought it'd be literal.
Bad dreams? No big deal. After all, Connie Perez is starting her first year in the prep school her mom runs. Anyone would be a little stressed, right? When she starts dreaming about strange creatures and places that don't make sense, she doesn't think much about it: there's other stuff on her mind. Then she starts noticing that the people she dreams about get sick right afterwards.
Then everything gets weird.
There's something bad on the campus of Springden Academy. Something that feeds on students and warps their minds. And, as Connie and her friends try to figure out what's going on, it starts to look like she's the only one who can stop it.
Freshman year was hard enough without having to fight evil after class.
Hickey of the Beast is a hilarious look at coming of age in a school where there are no secrets, but plenty of mysteries, and where supernatural studies take on a whole new meaning. It's a story about all the things that make growing up hell: boys, history class, annoying little brothers, and saving the world from evil. When the supernatural comes to school, it's no field day - and that's before you factor in homework.
Connie has been looking forward to her freshman year and dreading it at the same time. After all, having her Mom as the principal of the prep school she'll be attending automatically singles her out as a faculty brat, not trustworthy. Then Connie starts having what seem to be psychic dreams. She sees girls getting sick and then next thing you know, in real life they're having breakdowns and leaving school. Connie doesn't take it seriously at first, but then she realizes that she might be the only one who can stop whatever is sucking the energy from her classmates. She goes on a quest to discover what it going on and her friends support her all the way. But the answer just might be closer to home than she thinks. Will she be able to triumph over evil or will Connie just be the latest victim? This was an interesting book. The whole thing is a gigantic letter to one of Connie's friends from summer camp about this unbelievable thing that she wants to share with her. It was an original take on the draining of energy by 'psychic vampires.' I really liked Connie, she was an interesting heroine and she kept me laughing and wondering what she would do next. The book held up really well for having originally been in serialized format. I am glad I got the chance to read it and although the ending wasn't completely unpredictable, it wasn't what I thought it would be either. I would look forward to reading more about Connie in the future and I will be keeping an eye out for Isable Kunkle's future writings. Recommended for a fun, different-than-your-average-bear story.
VERDICT: 4/5 Stars
*I received an Advanced Reading Copy from the publisher, via LibraryThing. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book was published March 15th, 2012.*