Friday, October 29, 2010

Just in Time for Halloween! UNEARTHLY ASYLUM, by PJ Bracegirdle!!!

It's that time again for all things creepy! My favorite time of year! In celebration, I'm reviewing a new middle-grade novel UNEARTHLY ASYLUM, by PJ Bracegirdle (provided by Simon & Schuster).

UNEARTHLY ASYLUM is the 2nd book in THE JOY OF SPOOKING series. But don't despair if you have yet to gobble up Book I, FIENDISH DEEDS. UNEARTHLY ASYLUM can stand on its own two feet! I had no problem digging into this book and Bracegirdle does a quick and seamless job of catching the reader up on what transpired in Book I.

Joy Wells isn't like most other girls - not that she much cares. Obsessed with famous horror writer E. A. Peugeot, Joy spends her time dressing up in a dead woman's tweeds and investigating paranormal activity around her hometown of Spooking. Meanwhile the mayor's assistant Mr. Octavio Phipps has also trained his sinister sights on the mysterious asylum. As Joy already knows, the embittered ex-punk rocker will stop at nothing in his nefarious quest to destroy her beloved town. When her pet frog Fizz becomes trapped behind the walls of a mental asylum, Joy must mount a rescue operation that brings her into conflict with Mr. Phipps again. Along with her brother Byron and their strange playmate Poppy, Joy soon uncovers mind-bending secrets straight from the pages of her favorite author. Can Joy get everyone out alive, or will they be trapped in the unearthly asylum forever?

The Writing. Bracegirdle is very literary. No spoon feeding in this book, which I love!

The Spooky Factor. This is perfect for readers who want to read under the covers with a flashlight. It's spooky enough to get kids' minds whirling with the supernatural, but not enough that they won't be able to get to sleep.

The Villain: Those of you who know me, know I love a well rounded villain! Bracegirdle's Mr. Phipps is just that. He has layers. You want to know more about him (for example, Phipps is an ex-punk rocker, which I think is pretty cool). Best of all, you love to hate him.

The Author: PJ is one cool cat! He has pretty much the craziest (creepiest) bio ever! He's worked in a haunted Scottish theatre and pushed laundry carts along dark tunnels under an insane asylum, just to name a few creepy jobs! You can find out more about him on his site at, along with the official JOY OF SPOOKING website,

Oh, and one last thing: There will be a 3rd book in the Joy of Spooking!! Go PJ!


xoxo -- Hilary


  1. hi miss hilary! happy halloween! wow my wanna read list is just getting soooo big. for sure this ones going on it cause i love spooky scary stuff. thanks to saying what it about cause that helps me know if i want it or dont want it. i hope you have a real fun halloween weekend.
    ...smiles and hugs from lenny
    p s nightshade city is sooooo good!!!

  2. OOoo. More reading material. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Oh that book looks great. Also the author's name reminds me of a Hobbit, so of course I love that.

  4. Thanks so much for the great review!

    By the way there's contest running to win both books in the series. And it's looking like great odds! Ends Halloween night: On My Bookshelf

    And yes, Melissa, Bracegirdle does appear in LOTR as a hobbit surname. Nicely spotted!

  5. The book sounds great and the cover is delish!

  6. Oh! This book sounds creepy-licious. Will have to check it out.

  7. The book is awesome, guys!!!

    Lenny, I'm so glad you're liking Nightshade City! w00t!

    I may have to name a rat Bracegirdle, I like it too, PJ, sorry! ;)

  8. Sounds like a 'must' read!

    Happy Halloween :)

  9. Shana K10/30/2010

    This sounds perfect for spooky lovers!!!

  10. Sounds like a good and different read! Thanks for the review.

  11. Great review, Hilary! PJ sounds like one interesting dude...

  12. Fabulous review. This sounds like good fun that I'm sure my kids will enjoy. Thanks. :)


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