Fountain Dead by Theresa Braun
Mark is uprooted from his home and high school in the Twin Cities and forced to move with his family into a Victorian in Nowhere-ville. Busy with the relocation and fitting in, Mark’s parents don’t see what’s unfolding around them—the way rooms and left behind objects seem alive with a haunted past.
Of course, Mark keeps his ghostly encounters to himself, all the while sinking deeper into the house's dark, alluring, and ultimately terrifying history. As romantic entanglements intensify, the paranormal activity escalates. Past and present come together. Everything is connected—from the bricks in the walls to the hearts beating in their chests, all the secrets of Fountain Dead are finally unearthed.
This is a great book for so many reasons. The main characters of Mark and Emma are great, very different but both very likeable, you really get behind them. I really felt like I got to know them as the book progressed which gives the book a really emotional feel when the horror begins to hit home, (literally!)
Fountain Dead is told via two story lines which meet up in dramatic conclusion. One is Emma's tale from 1860 who is uprooted from her home leaving behind her first love. Her father wants her to marry and live out her life as someone's wife but she has other plans...
Our other main character is Mark. A teenager from 1988 he shares lot in common with Emma. He too has been forced to move with his parents when they secure teaching posts at a university and leaves his first love far behind.I really enjoyed both timelines, and as the plot progresses it gets really tense for both characters so much so that when you're reading about Emma you're desperate to get back to Mark's POV and vice versa!
I loved Mark a brilliant portrayal of a teenage boy. I don't how I know this as to the best of my knowledge, I've never been a teenage boy! For him it's a real coming of age tale where he's forced to become a man, taking control and making decisions about what's best for his family. He's got a lot on his plate in this book, figuring out who he is, what's important to him, his family and how far he'll go to protect the ones he cares about which he goes about with a great sense of humour.
Emma is also a great character who refuses to settle as someone's wife but wants to teach and help shape young minds. She goes through a lot but she's a fighter.
And of course, there's a whole load of ghosts to entertain you too!
Fountain Dead is so much more than just a haunted house story, there's a lot of elements to this tale, the importance of families sticking together through thick or thin, duty vs desire, revenge and loss.
I've read a lot of great stories by Theresa Braun over the years, all of these have been horror themed. But in this book she also shows off her abilities as an amazing romance author which really adds a lot of depth to Fountain dead. I have to admit I'm not too keen on romance, clearly horror is my jam, but the romantic subplots in this are amazing, really poignant and moving.
The ending is great too, every tiny loose end is tied up in one great big ending!
Fountain Dead is out soon, November 20th via Unnerving.