by Laurie Faria Stolarz
My rating for this book: 4 stars out of 5
For me, this story was a first. I don’t often read books with the intention of haunting. In Project 17, six teenagers break into the Danvers State Hospital for a night. It really is a creepy place, but for Derik, the organizer of the event, it seems like his only chance to make a good film before the building is demolished. The others have their own reasons for going. For Chet, it’s one night away from his dad. Mimi is only there to try and find a trace of her grandmother who died there. For Liza, it was one thing to add to her very short list of extra-curricular activities in hope of being accepted to Harvard. And for Greta and Tony, it’s a chance to be on television if Derik’s film wins a RTV contest. I think the diversity of the characters made the story interesting and very unique. The only thing I would have done differently is that I would have changed a few parts to make the story more realistic. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you which parts I would have changed without spoiling it.
As I previously mentioned, the characters in Project 17 are very diverse. I think it would be impossible for somebody to read this book and not relate to at least one of the characters. For me, it was Liza; a smart girl with her nose always stuck in a book. For others it may be Chet, the class clown, or Greta and Tony, the kids from the drama department. If I’d had the chance, I would have recommended that the author tone down Greta’s sense of self importance. Overall, you can tell that each character was well thought out and could fit in at any real life high school. Each has their own well crafted personality and drives that are sure to captivate you, given the chance.
Personally, I’m not one for re-reads, but I have admit this book had spunk. If you don’t mind dolls, spirits, clown masks and abandoned asylums, this book is for you. So grab the book and brace yourself for the fast paced story of six kids and one crazy night.