Within These Wicked Walls #bookreview #netgalley

Ciao, amici! I made a slight departure from my typical reading genre to a YA horror book. I read a compelling review of Within These Wicked Walls by Lauren Blackwood on the Tessa Talks Books blog, and I knew I needed to check it out. I’m glad Tessa encouraged me to do so. I really enjoyed it. If you’d like to know what she thought, here’s a link to her review. Mine is below


Rating: 4 out of 5.

Great Possession Tale

I saw a review for Lauren Blackwood’s Within These Wicked Walls, and it sounded amazing. So I snatched it right up. And I’m glad I did.

I don’t read a lot of YA, but this isn’t the angsty YA that would turn off a lot of adults. It’s intelligent and complex. The heroine, Andromeda, has lived a hard life and grown up fast in her scant nineteen years. She’s sent to the castle of twenty-year-old Magnus to rid him and his home of a curse that ten licensed debteras (essentially exorcists) had failed to cleanse. Why was she chosen? Because she was unlicensed, thrown out by her instructor, the most powerful and famous debtera ever. And she accepted because she had nowhere else to go. That makes for a desperate alliance that’s compelling to read about.

The supporting cast is as rich as the two heroes, and it was a pleasure to learn about each of them. Of particular note were the character arcs of Saba, Jember, and Kelela.

The atmosphere in the castle is dark and foreboding. Blackwood paints a horrific picture of a cursed home that is sometimes chilling, sometimes shocking, and always a little uncomfortable. She excels and making the reader sense the undercurrents that live in the house.

I really enjoyed this story and recommend it to anyone looking for a gothic horror tale. Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a gratis copy of the book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.


‘Tis the season for all things scary. If you’re looking for a tale to make you look over your shoulder at the creaks and groans in your house, this is the one. Saluti!

50 thoughts on “Within These Wicked Walls #bookreview #netgalley

  1. I’m on the fence about this one. I’m so intrigued because I love Gothic but I normally shy from most books involving possession. Still, between your review and Tessa’s, I think I need to keep it on my reading radar.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I know where your aversions lie. I don’t think you’d have a problem with this. It doesn’t venture into the angel/demon/devil/God aspects of possession. This is more curse/monster-oriented. Kind of like Beauty and the Beast or werewolves. The exorcism at play doesn’t call on priests as we know them and relies on the debtera creating amulets to cleanse the evil. It’s really more myth and monster than religion-based.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this story, Staci. The cover is unique and would make me take a second look. The setting is intriguing and perfect for a horror story. Congrats to the author for this wonderful review!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m so glad you took a chance and actually enjoyed it! It is gothic done right and I rarely see that in current fiction. If a book about ghosts can make me forget to feel scared, then it’s got to be exceptional ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ciao, cara!
      I know what you mean about seeing this book on the blogosphere. I was intrigued by Tessa’s review of it and decided to take a chance on it. I’m glad I did. If you read it, I’d love to know what you think.
      Buona giornata!

      Liked by 2 people

      • And Tessa does have such great taste! I absolutely intend to read this as soon as I get my hands on it.. and that would be nice, thank you, it’s so interesting to see what everyone takes away from their reading experience! 😊
        Buonanotte and Happy reading!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Tessa’s responsible for many of the books on my Kindle.

          I agree with you. I love seeing what people get from different books. Everyone takes away something different. That’s one of the many wonderful things about reading (I think).

          Grazie, Sheri. And happy reading to you, too.

          Liked by 1 person

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