Publisher: Mass Market Paperback
Age Group: Young Adult
Release Date: 1974
Why does the exclusive boarding school Blackwood have only four students?
Kit walks the dark halls and feels a penetrating chill. What terror waits around the next corner?
I liked Down A Dark Hall. It was a really fast read, and the plot progressed nicely. A lot of the scenarios were pretty cliche, though, and I had to keep reminding myself that when this book was published, the storyline wasn't super overdone and cheesy like it is now.
The main characters (the four students) were good MCs. Kit told the story well, though she reminded me if a young child because of how naive she seemed at times.
The professors were creepy, and that definitely added to the story.
Duncan was very good at the descriptions of the setting and the characters. She provided a wonderfully eerie description of the boarding school, so much to the point where I could picture it in my mind, and I got the chills when imagining myself in the school.
I liked the ending; it was exciting up until the very end, and still left room for us to wonder what happens next.
But, I would have liked to know what had happened to the other characters, the professors, and how Kit's parents reacted to the whole ordeal. I think if the author had written an epilogue, and included all of that in it, this book would have had the perfect ending.
The cover is simple, yet still gives us an insight into the creepiness of the book. But if I had my way, I would have liked the cover to pop a little more, and be more eye-catching.
"Of course, I'll like it," she said thickly. "You and Dan have a wonderful honeymoon. You deserve it, Mom, if anybody ever did. I'm sorry I've been such a pill. I'll be happy here --- I promise."
There had been a question nagging at the back of her mind. It slid away now and was forgotten. It did not really matter why her bedroom at Blackwood had a lock on the outside --- but not on the inside --- of its door.
The Final Verdict:
Lois Duncan is a classic thriller writer. I think that everyone should read at least one of her books, and if you have to choose one, I definitely suggest Down A Dark Hall. :)