Thirteen year-old Jessie lives in an emotionally abusive home with an all but absent father and a stepmother who goes out of her way to make life a living hell for Jessie. With twin stepsiblings thrown into the mix, this is a modern day Cinderella with a twist. There is no prince this time. Instead, Jessie has three friends who make her life enjoyable and try to protect her from the evil that lurks in her home.
Secretly, the kids have been doing odd jobs and saving the money for a faraway camp that will take Jessie away from home for the entire summer. Knowing her stepmother will never allow her to go somewhere fun, a friend’s understanding parent concocts a letter stating how awful the summer camp is, the manners and behaviors Jessie will be forced to learn and other non-pleasant promises. Of course, step-mommy thinks this is ideal for Jessie, who was going to house sit while the rest of the “family” went on a lavish summer vacation.
The summer camp is not your normal camp. The staff uses the death of two campers as fodder for scaring the teens during the first night’s campfire. Jessie soon learns one of those campers was her mother, who has yet to cross over to the hereafter. In time, Jessie learns of her connection to her mother’s family and her mission to end the evils at the camp. Filled with the supernatural and normal teen-age antics, Camps Covered Secrets is a fun story that will keep the reader captivated to the very end.
The characters are well developed and readers will find it easy to empathize with Jessie’s blights at home and camp. The teenage “romances” are realistic. Even the odd, bewitching parts of the story are easy to believe. Losing one’s self iin the story will happen quickly and naturally. On the down side, the characters all have a terrible and distracting habit of pausing and saying “um.” On several pages there are half dozen “ums.” The other disappointment was at the end. It would be greatly satisfying to read of Jessie’s home life and the use of her powers against those evils. And where was “Dad?” How did Jessie deal with him after the things she learned at camp? Those are two gapping wholes left hanging.
Camps Covered Secrets is a fun story that you can find yourself immersed in quite quickly. The pages do not seem to turn fast enough when Jessie and her friends are dealing with the camp’s evil sectors. Teens as young as thirteen, and those on the brink, will love this story. If you like paranormal stories but do not want anything extremely dark, Camps Covered Secrets will satisfy quite nicely.
I received a complimentary copy of Camps Covered Secrets as a member of the Dorrance Publishing Book Review Team. Visit dorrancebookstore.com to learn how you can become a member of the Book Review Team. To view the Dorrance Publishing catalog click HERE.