Draw the Dark Review

Friday, August 27, 2010

There are things in Winter, Wisconsin, folks just don't talk about. The murder way back in '45 is one. The near-suicide of a first-grade teacher is another. And then there is 17-year old Christian Cage. Christian's parents disappeared when he was a little boy, and ever since he's drawn and painted obsessively, trying desperately to remember his mother.
The problem is Christian doesn't just draw his own memories. He can draw the thoughts of those around him. Confronted with fears and nightmares they'd rather avoid, people have a bad habit of dying. So it's no surprise that Christian isn't exactly popular. What no one expects is for Christian to meet Winter's last surviving Jew and uncover one more thing best forgotten the day the Nazi's came to town.
Based on a little-known fact of the United States' involvement in World War II, Draw the Dark is a dark fantasy about reclaiming the forgotten past and the redeeming power of love.
Taken from GoodReads.

Since his parents mysteriously disappeared, Christian Cage has been living with his uncle in the sleepy town of Winter, Wisconsin. He's an outsider, an outcast, and he's labeled the weird kid because his only means for self-expression and comfort is his art. He's begun having vivid dreams though, and he finds that in these dreams, he's a boy named David, and he can slip in and out of time - learning his town has a lot of secrets, and many of them involve the Nazi occupation of Germany. As he slips deeper and deeper into the dark past of Winter, Christian begins to wonder if he might just be able to rescue his parents in "the sideways place" in his dreams.

Draw the Dark is one of those books that I've never heard of before, but just happened to surprise me with an original plot, sound characters, and a riveting story. Written by Ilsa J. Bick, Draw the Dark is a cross between YA Sci-Fi and Fantasy, and it wholeheartedly embraces a creepy, be-afraid-of-the-dark vibe. Written in haunting prose that allows you to get inside the main character, Christian's head, you are sent on a terrifying and intense journey towards the truth with him.

Draw the Dark also turned out to be quite the history lesson. I never knew that the United States housed prisoners of war during WWII (something my text books left out - thank you, public school education.) Furthermore, Draw the Dark gets down to the psychology of the story, rather than just painting a picture of angst and horror. You will be in the midst of the story. My one problem I had with the story was that I was expecting more of a physical journey to "the sideways place," but that sort of failed to happen.

Either way, I was really very pleased with the original story and writing in Draw the Dark. I give it a 4 out of 5, I highly recommend it to fans of YA Fantasy and Sci-Fi, as well as those who love a good mystery and thriller.

I received Draw the Dark free of charge as an e-book in exchange for an honest review. This, in no way, affected my opinion or review of this book.
Release Date: October 28, 2010


  1. Well, thanks for such a nice review. I'm actually planning a sequel that might very well open up that sideways place ;-)

  2. I love how it sounds. Mysterious yet engaging. =)

  3. Ooo excellent review. Thanks for bringing something new to my attention :)

    Happy weekend :)

  4. I have seen this book, but not a review. I'd like to read it. I love the cover and something about it just draws me in.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog.


  5. I like the sound of this one...putting it on my list now. Thanks!

  6. The mix of sci-fi/fantasy and history sounds like something I'd enjoy. Love the "up north" setting. Love the cover too.

  7. Kind of difficult to discern exactly what this one's about from the blurb; your review makes me more excited for it!

  8. Found you from the hop and I'm your newest follower.
    I love your blog, literally spent the last 20 minutes reading through it :)

  9. Sounds like a great book! Stopping by on the hop. I'm now a follwer.
    I Am A Reader, Not a Writer

  10. oh, creepy looking cover! Book sounds great though.

  11. Whoa whoa whoa, I love the sound of this book! It sure sounds unique, and it's great how it's a bit educational, too! Fantastic review. I'll keep my eye out for it.

  12. This books sounds so mysterious and mixing the story with history is a great combination. Please enter me in this contest.


  13. i hadn't heard of this before either. sounds like it was a hidden gem!!!

  14. Never heard of this book, but now I've got it on my TBR list on GoodReads --- sounds like an interesting read!

  15. Hey, returning your hop! Draw the Dark sounds interesting, I hadn't heard of it before. Also liked reading your review of Prism - I was wondering about how good it was when I saw it in the bookstore. Sounds like it might be worth requesting from the library!

  16. Sounds really interesting- I'll have to check it out! Going to follow you now...

  17. Hi...thanks for hopping by my blog and following:)

    This review is great...really gives me an idea of the tone of the book as well as the story, and it is one I would be interested in. I read YA fiction from time to time and am always on the lookout for something that does not include vampires :)

    Just curious, do you still swim competitively?

  18. Great review! I'm adding this to my wish list! Thanks for the heads up!

  19. I have been trying to read more darker books this sounds like a good one.

  20. Hi there just stopping by from the hop and I love the sound of this book. Have a great Sunday!



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