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Uninvited by Amanda Marrone

February 18, 2008

cover of Uninvited by Amanda MarroneReading Amanda Marrone‘s Uninvited is like reading an old school YA horror novel, and I mean that in the best possible way. If, like me, you cut your YA teeth, so to speak, on the YA thriller and horror novels of the early ’90s, Uninvited should be right up your alley.

Jordan is being haunted by Michael Green, her ex-boyfriend. A few nights after he died, Michael appeared at Jordan’s window and asked her to let him in. He’s done this every night for the past three months and turned Jordan into a recluse. She can’t go out anymore because she needs to be home before dark. Because who knows what this undead Michael will do to her if he catches her outside. And Jordan’s loneliness and her twisted conversations with Michael are weakening her, tempting her to maybe, just maybe, invite him in.

Marrone does a great job of setting up the appropriately moody yet believable atmosphere. The early chapters establish Jordan’s isolation, slowly building tension that stems from both the fear of what Michael, now a vampire, wants to do to Jordan and nervousness about Jordan’s psychological state. Jordan can’t tell her friends the real reason she’s unable to go out with them anymore—who’d believe her if told the truth?—and dropped cross country and the fall drama production. It’s strained the few friendships she has, and her relationship with her mother has never been exactly healthy, so the possibility of Jordan giving in to Michael is strong. And Michael. What happened to him, and what plans does he have for Jordan? After they broke up, he seemingly slept his way through half the girls in school, so why haunt Jordan?

Unlike most vampire books you come across these days, in Uninvited, vampires = Bad! Evil!! Bad!!! This, more than anything else, first got me thinking that Uninvited was like the old horror stories I devoured 15 years ago. Add to that the lone girl being haunted by something, or someone, she can’t tell anyone about (although, granted, in most old YA thrillers, Michael wouldn’t be a vampire but some random pyscho with a vendetta against Jordan), the relative lack of blood, the hint of romance, and especially Marrone’s writing style. I can’t be the only one who thinks this is a story that fits right in with D. E. Athkin’s Sister Dearest, Lael Littke’s Prom Dress, and early (back when they were still decent) Fear Street novels, but is at the same time contemporary in its details. (Okay, judging by other reviews, maybe I am the only one.)

My one criticism of Uninvited is that the vampire mythology is rather cliched and not as developed as it could be. And, for anyone considering recommending this to teens, just so you know, there are numerous references to drugs and sex, and a *lot* of drinking. Think Christopher Pike’s Chain Letter books plus Weekend and multiply it by ten or so.

Amanda Marrone has been featured at the YA Authors Cafe and interviewed at Cynsations.

12 Comments leave one →
  1. February 20, 2008 4:46 pm

    This sounds great! I am a huge fan of Lois Duncan’s horror novels, and this seems similar…

  2. March 2, 2008 6:03 pm

    Hmm, sounds interesting. I got a free copy so I’ll have to read it soon.

  3. Taylor permalink
    March 17, 2008 7:20 pm

    I read this book I LOVED IT! it grabbed my attention and inspired me to read more. This book is now one of my favorite books .

  4. elaine permalink
    July 8, 2008 4:37 pm


  5. sarah permalink
    September 25, 2008 2:27 pm

    i would like to read it, though i’m not sure if it’s good or not. I would like multiple peoples replyes.

  6. January 14, 2009 12:35 pm

    I loved the book. I just finished it today for a book report for my English III class. I totally recomend it!

  7. sarah permalink
    January 19, 2009 9:44 am

    Honestly i tried to read it and i thought it was a little dull for my taste, for some reason it just kept going over and over the same things i didn’t finish it and that’s saying something cuz i hardly ever do that. I am a person that is addicted to vampire books so if you are a hardcore vampire book reader i wouldn’t recommend it to you. I have read far better ones but if you really want to read it hey you might like. I just thought i would offer my opinion =) (no hard feelings to the people who do like it i just thought people can get another view on the other “side” you are entitled to your opinions also I’m not baggin on you ) good luck book hunting to all =)

  8. January 20, 2009 9:52 am

    sarah – No problem! Thanks for chiming in.

  9. brit permalink
    January 21, 2009 4:01 pm

    i actually thought this book was very good. i mean when i first began it, i was like wow. although she kept repeating her problems and didnt seem like she was going to do anything about it. and that girl she used 2 hang out with lara or whatever her name is (i 4got) her old best friend suddenly gets tied into i mean WTF!? then rachael?? how fast can jordan explain things bcuz she explained it all during a drive looking 4 her oldfriend. (um..spoiled srry) nd yeah. i thought it was a VERY good book. but WORTH RENTING AT A LIBRARY NOT BUYING.

  10. channy permalink
    April 1, 2009 11:46 am

    sounds good.
    right know i’m reading the host by stephenie meyer. But i almost finish, so i’m looking for another book. I think i’ll read this. it actually sounds very interesting 🙂

  11. August 18, 2009 2:38 pm

    Hello. I’m a first time author of a paranormal thriller for teens called Hybrid. Would you consider reviewing my work? Thanks, Angie Reed.

  12. Janea permalink
    August 12, 2011 7:01 pm

    I just go finished reading Devoured by her and it was a snippet of this story at the end. It got me hooked after that I have to read this!

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