Here is the book summary: After experiencing a bad breakup and some disturbing dreams, a young psychology professor from California decides to get a fresh start by taking a job at Duke University. She soon becomes obsessed with the files from the world-famous Rhine parapsychology lab experiments, which attempted to prove if ESP really exists. Along with a handsome professor, she uncovers disturbing cases, including one about a house supposedly haunted by a poltergeist, investigated by another research team in 1965. Unaware that the entire original team ended up insane or dead, the two professors and two exceptionally gifted Duke students move into the grand, abandoned haunted house to replicate the investigation, with horrifying results.
The Unseen is Sokoloff’s most thrilling novel to date: a story of deception, attraction, and the unknown.
Although it takes a lot for a book to scare me, ghost stories usually spook me out just a bit, no matter what. I really wanted to be spooked by The Unseen. I just wasn’t. I felt the first 80% of the story toyed with the idea of being a ghost story. It was filled with tidbits of the history of Paranormal Research, the various scientific methods of recording Psi, ESP and Psychokinetic phenomena, although interesting, left little room for character development and a the all important building of eeriness and fear you see in books like Haunting of Hell House by Shirley Jackson. I am not saying there was no character development, just not enough for me to invest myself in them.
The paranormal activity near the end was well written but just didn’t pack a punch. I felt no creepiness at any ‘unseen’ entity and even though the main character constantly reminded me she felt she was being watched, I saw no evidence of it. That may not make sense to some but a well written book can use atmosphere to build tension, fear or any strong emotion.
I will say that, for those of you that prefer to ‘toy’ with light ghost stories. You will probably enjoy this. I realize that I am somewhat jaded when it comes to scary stories.