Monday, March 3, 2014

Book Review: Constructing Marcus, by Danielle DeVor

About the Book (from Goodreads):
Sixteen-year-old ghost hunter, Emma Hoffman thought that moving into an old Victorian was going to be awesome– ghosts galore.

Much to her delight, she discovers that the house is haunted—not by a ghost, but by a construct (a spirit created to be a servant). As she gets to know Marcus, the construct, he asks her to help him avenge his maker and find her killer. Emma’s not too sure this is a good idea, she’s a ghost hunter after all, not a detective, but she agrees to help him anyway.

While trying to discover more information about the killer, Emma begins to have feelings for Marcus- feelings she isn’t ready to admit. Then the sorcerer who killed Marcus’s maker shows up at Emma’s house with an insane plan to capture Marcus and absorb his power- Emma isn’t having it. Marcus is hers.

When the killer performs a spell that begins to steal Marcus’s life force, Emma risks losing him. It’s a race against time for Emma to figure out how to stop the sorcerer and his spell before Marcus fades away and disappears from her life forever.


Not all the darkness in this YA tale comes from the ghosts and witchcraft that our protagonist searches out. Even darker are the emotional and family issues she must deal with. No wonder she wants to hunt ghosts instead.

They prove far less scary than her real life.

Emma is snarky sixteen year old whose family recently moved to Boston. With her clique of ghost hunting buddies back in Florida, she seems at a loss how to deal with her new dwelling, a truly haunted old house. When she starts seeing evidence of ghost activity and finds an old leather spell book, she knows she needs to figure out what's going on.

Told in first person POV, Emma is your typical self-absorbed teen, totally consumed with solving the mysteries of her new home. But her obsession with ghosts is a distraction from dealing with her reality. Her mother is an anorexic on a scary downward spiral, and her father is a workaholic doctor with little time to devote to his newly uprooted family.

Ms. Devor doesn't shy away from the dark and difficult subject of dealing with this particularly insidious disease. Anyone who has dealt with a loved one with an eating disorder will immediately recognize Emma's distress and emotional upheaval. Paired with the lack of support from her supposedly "functional" parent, Emma has her hands full even without ghosts and witches.

There are no easy answers. Emma can't fix her mom. What she can do is use her ghost hunting skills to solve the mysteries of her new home, and unlock the secrets to a murder that happened more than a hundred years before. In the process, she meets Marcus, who isn't quite human, but he is someone that she's able to help. And someone who might just steal her heart.

Buy the Book HERE.

About the Author:

Danielle DeVor spent her early years fantasizing about vampires and watching “Salem’s Lot” way too many times. After living briefly in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, she moved back to her hometown to write. When not writing and reading about weird things, you will find her hanging out at the nearest coffee shop, enjoying a mocha frappuccino. 

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