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Micheline Helsing is a tetrachromat—a girl who sees the auras of the undead in a prismatic spectrum As one of the last descendants of the Van Helsing lineage she has trained since childhood to destroy monsters both corporeal and spiritual the corporeal undead go down by the bullet the spiritual undead by the lens With an analog SLR camera as her best weapon Micheline exorcises ghosts by capturing their spiritual energy on film She's aided by her crew Oliver a techno whiz and the boy who developed her camera's technology; Jude who can predict death; and Ryder the boy Micheline has known and loved foreverWhen a routine ghost hunt goes awry Micheline and the boys are infected with a curse known as a soulchainAs the ghostly chains spread through their bodies Micheline learns that if she doesn't exorcise her entity in seven days or less she and her friends will die Now pursued as a renegade agent by her monster hunting father Leonard Helsing she must track and destroy an entity powerful than anything she's faced before or die trying Lock stock and lens she’s in for one hell of a week 


10 thoughts on “Shutter

  1. says:

    Well that was a nice little creeptastic ride I mean it's not a really huge horror book but it's a nice scary book Micheline Helsing Oliver Stoker yes part of the families and Ryder and Jude are a part of The Helsing Corps They got a call there was some cray going on over at the hospital and no one else could get there for an hour Soooooooooooooooo Micheline takes matters into her own hands and has her and the team show up They are not supposed to just do stuff like that unless told and yeah she got reamed by her dad And it turns out some funky ghost evil thing puts a curse on her and the gang I keep saying gang and now I want to watch Scooby Doo but I digress Anyway said ghost doesn't go uietly into the night when zapped with the special camera Nope it puts a curse on them all and they have so many days to break the curse or dieeeeeeeeeeee I love scary stories and thought this was great with the spin from the Helsing and Stoker parts along with a few others you can read about yourself Oh and lord I don't want to look at mirrors any They always creep me out anyway from all of the scary movies LolAs usual there are some revelations and a good ole fight and some sad stuff thrown in too I think fans of horror will like this book If your into major gore and hardcore horror it's probably not for you Happy ReadingMY BLOG Melissa Martin's Reading List


  2. says:

    Trust me I would have loved for my first book in 2016 to be a winner Sadly it wasn’t and I never managed to enjoy Shutter mostly because whispers I was drawn into the 4 levels of dooooom no it’s not really a thing I do know that shhhHow much as I wanted to like it from the start I felt that something was off with the writing Perhaps because whole pages read like textbooks Welcome to REAPER 101 ”High powered uartz lenses allowed me to capture light effectively as uartz conducted a ghost’s electricity and had a high sensivity to fast moving violet light Most ghosts succumbed in a few photographs their energy whittled down shot by shot and sealed into film’s silver halide trapHelsing Research and Development optimized my flashes to slam ghosts with flares of ionized light which broke down the electrons in the air and turned my camera into a lightning rod for ghostly energy Lastly my monopod steadied my had and became a melee weapon in a pinch –“ And so on Can I mention that she is stalking a ghost at this point? All these scientific speeches were so freaking specific that they made me lose sight of what was important the PLOT and urged me to get my hands on a thesaurusNot to mention that this wordy and over specific writing emphasizes the lack of dialogues and their fakeness when the characters finally decide to talk together I mean who in the word uses a word like unpalatable in a conversation? At 16? One might argue that they aren’t our usual teenagers and I sure can’t deny that Yet it bothered me because in my opinion the relative lack of dialogues always weakens the characters dynamics More I read and I realize that I have personal peeves that can completely spoil my reading experience An invasion of metaphors is one of them and it doesn’t mean that Courtney Alameda’s writing isn’t good because I’m sure some readers will read the uotes below and love them I’m not one of those readers Don’t get me wrong I don’t mind the occasional metaphor but GOD they were EVERYWHERE The writing didn’t flow and some sentences let me frowning at my book helplessly Anger rasped in the suared breaths he took the ones for shooting and fighting and not losing your head; it deepened the shadows under his eyes and throbbed in his jugular THE FUCK? Large sprinklers dotted the ceiling like daisies with razor sharp petals the same apparatuses I’d seen on the ceilings of Seward Memorial’s Ninth Circle Those devices sprouted nerve gas in case the necros escaped their pens but why would they be needed in an evacuation tunnel?I don’t know You lost me at petals Then at apparatuses really? Definitely too much purple prose for me to enjoy reading Ah Micheline Micheline Micheline Micheline I don’t hate you but it’s allllll about you now isn’t it? Indeed I had a hard time standing how self absorbed she was Her safety The future The boys’ safety Her fault her problems her her her For a girl who’s supposed to be badass she spends loads of time whining Her friend Oliver shares a great relationship with his father? So unfair given that hers is an abusive asshole She drowns in guilt every time a member of her team is injured? It doesn’t prevent her from lying to them and hiding important information about their enemies I’ll pass over the fact that she sees every other woman as weak and Jude’s comments about punching like a girl serve her well or as a sexual distraction for her precious boys god forbid the guys develop feelings I really liked the fact that Bianca resisted and surprised her by the way but did she need to dismiss everything that didn't involve fighting kills? Medics are useful too you knowSorry guys it does seem as if I hated her yet I really didn’t – she annoyed me than everything else but I can’t deny that she was brave and strong minded Her inner pep talk and other self absorbed monologues just gritted my nerves I presume As for the other characters I won’t lie and hide the fact that Ryden made my heart beat faster in the beginning Loyal protective not an asshole what could one want in a love interest? His own personality perhaps? Given the fact that the guy doesn’t talk I kid I kidalmost I read and blurred he became yes he loves Micheline this is obvious from the start yet what does he like doing in his spare time? What does he think of all these events? What does he freaking do except acting like a bodyguard for Micheline? His whole characterization is centered on his relationship with her and in the end I feel as if I don’t know him He has no layers The only things I know about him are 1 He loves rules and Micheline2 He was adopted sort of by Micheline’s father for training3 He thinks Jude is gross with his dating Oh that he has a strong opinion about how his friend should live his sex life that he does roll eyesYou sense my frustration? You’re freaking right And don't get me started about her father slaps the assholeShutter is by no means a bad book though Indeed I found the plot really interesting and most of my frustration lay in the fact that I wanted to know what would happen but couldn’t handle the writing and the characters Courtney Alamedaa manages to successfully mix classic horror tropes and her take on the HelsingDracula myth was really well done Trust me it’s rare that I find myself captivated by a plot when a book isn’t working for me that’s why I couldn’t rate Shutter lower If it wasn’t for the info dumping the metaphors and the stiff writing I’m pretty sure that I would have overlooked my annoyance with the charactersSadly I was disappointed in the climax which didn’t live up to the expectations carefully built in spite of my other peeves I would love to state that Shutter was unpredictable but unfortunately if it was in the beginning it didn't last Yes it was well wrapped but not surprising at all and uite the easy road ► Oh well My first book in 2016 has come and gone Still 250 books in my kindle waiting for me to read them no I feel no fear high pitched voice At all For of my reviews please visit


  3. says:

    READ THIS ON XPRESSO READS The Helsing Corps only showed up when someone didn't stay dead Do you hear that? Those are the sounds of my tears dropping because shit just got serious and I am overwhelmed with emotions over the fact that YA does know how to write a horror filled action packed book I nearly gave up Hallelujah Huzzah HuzzahIf you liked Fatal Frame you would like this Even though I only played 15 minutes of that game it was enough to permanently scar my brain for the rest of my life Everything was going so well with the slow prologue and then a ghost appeared from out of nowhere and I threw my Playstation controller at the TV and ran out of the room like shrieking like a baby I am not kidding My little brother can attest to this While this book may not have been as scary as that intense like it has ghosts and scenes that would likely give you goosebumps all the same Ghosts here mean business And by business I mean gouged eyes dismembered hands torn and scattered teeth y'know the usual shady stuffDon't you just wish we can go back to that time when ghosts were only good for peek a boos? Childhood where hath thou gone?The best part of this book is that everything makes sense It is grounded in logic and science how ghosts appear what they are made of the process of defeating them how necros or zombie ish thingies? are made what the virus is capable of and everything is just so interesting I appreciated even the fact that it isn't dependent on science even faith is capable of exorcising them which is such a breath of fresh air because for me sometimes a collective belief in something can work wonders If enough people can deem something as holy maybe that gives it some sort of power too simply just from the hearts of the masses? It makes the world building so much complex and gives it a lot of depth because the possibilities are just endless One thing that makes it a lot similar to Fatal Frame is the MC's way of defeating ghosts which is trapping its ghostlight in a physical container in this case a roll film in a camera The game series Fatal Frame uses the same method with its Camera Obscura a couple of shots the clearer the better and the ghost is defeated which means you don't only not evade them you have to face them head on too now you know why I couldn't play the game At first I was a bit conflicted because the method was basically the same but the experience is way different when you read about it in books so it didn't bug me as much I thought it wouldIf you liked Parasite Eve you would like this If you are familiar with this game then you should be able to recognise Aya from below She's a calculating strong willed heroine from the police force who finds herself dealing and killing mutated humans and creatures She stops at nothing and is afraid of nothingNow let's go back to Shutter Meet Micheline our bad ass no nonsense calculating heroine Be it ghosts or necros or human scorpions she'll be facing them head on because she knows what is at stake and there is no other way to go about it She puts her life in her own hands and refuses to let others shape it for her that is how determined stubborn and strong willed she is She protects her friends and family and even fights them in order to save them And she is as human as you and me because she makes mistakes she can be vulnerable and she loses too And that makes her such an endearing character Meeting and reading about her made me remember Aya from Parasite EveI absolutely loved this girl She is as real as real can get It's like I see her as the best version of anyone still full of flaws but can gather bouts of courage when the situation calls for it I loved how during her times of weaknesses she doesn't go too angsty Yes she mourns and grieves but she tries so hard despite everything and that's something I'd like to emulate And besides how often do we see kick ass heroines who stay kick ass?If you liked Left 4 Dead you would like this too One of the best thing about that game is its intensity There's nothing else that can get your heart pumping than walking silently down a road only to trigger a car alarm and have a HORDE of flesh eating zombies running to get a bite of your blood filled throat Me and my mates would be scared out of our wits and would go shouting over our mics Do you hear that? Those are the groans of death HURRY UP AND RUN IDIOTIf it's action you are looking for you need not look far because Shutter is absolutely full of it lots of fight scenes that are easy to visualize and are not repetitive and a lot of non fight scenes that are eually intense Seriously I wouldn't be surprised if this becomes a movie because it kinda has the formula down pat There was this scene that was already said in the blurb so I knew it was coming but when I read it in the book it still felt like I read it blind because good lord my heart was seriously beating so fast Not only is the author capable of evoking strong emotional feelings from the reader she also knows how to make them excited tooAnd come on our mates here got chased by necros and they had to fight their way to the top floor of a building from the basement while still kicking necro ass along the way EPIC BOOK IS EPICAs for the romanceSee we have ONE heroine who is surrounded by three guys Usually you see this premise and slowly turn your head away in second hand embarrassment because you instantly expect it would be filled with cheesy drama and flirting and fighting for the girl I mean come on ONE GIRL THREE GUYS What else could it mean?But this book managed to surprise me Thirty pages in and no cheesy flirting eyebrow wiggling or any How are ye snoogum woogums? that happened Sixty pages in we get hints from the heroine and one of the guys A forbidden romance that is showcased in a very meaningful and subtle way They have a lot of scenes together but most of it are related to the plot and when they let a bit of their guard down we get teased a lot and you end up yearning for It's not overwhelming at all and not underwhelming either because every gesture they do has meaning and thought behind them which makes everything just so bloody worth itEven better? The camaraderie they have with each other They share a connection so strong that it just shows within the pages I loved how they can communicate with a few words or with a few gestures and get things done I loved the lengths they would go for each other if one's life is in danger I loved how they can talk and joke with each other with no malice no What did he mean by that? Did he like me? Do I like him? But what about this guy? ISN'T THAT AWESOME? just casual innocent banter among friends who will support each other come low or high waterAll in all? This is one book that is not to be missed It's scary it's intense and it's endearing all at the same time a combination of awesome factors you don't really see much nowadays especially in this genre This definitely sets the bar high


  4. says:

    Micheline Helsing is the last of the line of Van Helsings of monster slaying fame In this version of the tale Micheline slays ghosts and otherworldly beings by capturing their visages on film thereby taking away their power and banishing back to the realms where they belongOne night Micheline and her team has a mission go awry and now because of a curse they are going to die Unless they can find the ghost that caused the sickness rid the world of it and save themselves The clock is ticking Shutter was a Brom Stoker award nominee for Best First Novel That's what drew me to this creepy taleHorror isn't my usual genre and the scary parts of this tale really scared the heck out of me If horror is your thing this one might not be scary enough Reading is such a personal experience you know? It's hard to predictAlameda was at her best during the truly terrifying moments which in my opinion were the undead creatures and anything scenario involving a mirror Everybody has mirrors in their homes What if hypothetically these were portals into other worlds and things could come crawling out of them into this one eeeeeekI didn't enjoy the so so character building teen angst or abusive relationship with the father That could be a potential trigger tooMicheline is the type of teen heroine that I met in the Divergent trilogy and wasn't impressed with then not trusting anyone in authority with her problems even though they could potentially help her throwing herself into life threatening situations without proper planning and therefore putting her friends in danger too and pining for the lantern jawed guy with the ridiculously pumped up fighting skillsIf it wasn't for the insanely entertaining parts with the ghosts mirrors strong friendships with her team and tragic back story this would be a two star book instead of a four But I believe that its positive attributes outweighed the negatives Again reading is such a personal trip You may disagree And that's okFor a debut book Shutter is really very good I read the last couple chapters of this in a rush because I was terrified for the well being of the main charactersIf you love young adult horror tales you should give this one a read Some read alikes Jackaby or 13 Days of Midnight Shutter is scarier than either of those but they have similar themes


  5. says:

    I'm starting to have a complex about all the books I am not liking this year I thought this would be scary but I realized very early on that it was not scary and it was not for me The writing felt forced There were too many technical terms too many explanations too few scary moments 2 starsIs it me or do these types of stories always have someone named Ryder?


  6. says:

    5 stars? PFft This is a freaking night sky of stars kind of bookBefore I try to put my thoughts into a somewhat coherent review let me just say one thing no matter what I write I feel like I will never be able to do this book justice In fact I believe only an interpretive dance at the edge of a cliff on top of the highest mountain wearing nothing but a crown of flowers could come somewhat close to doing Shutter justice And it would probably still fall short So yeah Good luck to me Saving people hunting things Family business Dean; Supernatural TV showBoy oh boy what a ride Shutter is completely and utterly mind blowing Fans of kick ass supernatural thrillerhorror stories will be delighted to discover this book And if like me you happen to be a fan of Supernatural the TV show and classics such as Dracula Helsing and Frankenstein you will absolutely love all the references I have a duty to do a duty to others a duty to you a duty to the dead and by God I shall do itIn short this book is about fighting evil exorcising ghosts and making sure no mundane humans get hurt in the process Micheline is a Helsing and one of the last ones in the lineage at that Her hunting partners are Jude a boy who can predict your death if he touches you; Oliver a computer genius and tech whiz; and Ryder the hottest Aussie on the planet who also happens to be completely out of limits for Micheline The story line involves a ghost hunt that gets crazy out of control a death curse with a 7 day deadline lots of eye popping action and a mystery to solve a mystery that will blow your socks offColt guns Harley motorcycles uija boards hunting ghosts with cameras and loads of wicked bad assery Shutter is my new obsession I love ghost stories from possessions to evil poltergeists demons Bloody Marries you name it and if they come with witty dialogues an awesome cast of characters and really complex world building I just can't resist I'm sold I am a fan I am a FANThere is not a single thing I could complain about here Not a thing I didn't like I loved every second of this book every little nuance every bit of reference every joke all the dialogues all the blood chillingly terrifying scenes ALL THE THINGS and FEELS and TWISTS To me this book is perfection I feel like I've been waiting for it my whole life Now I know not everyone will feel the same some of you might not get it at all I guess it's just a matter of taste but if your taste is anything like mine dark creepy stuff cool gadgets guns cars motorcycles cameras references to classic horror icons and characters that are so well written they become your imaginary friends then you will probably be just as stoked to read Shutter as I was OK now let's talk about the scary I am a total wuss when it comes to watching horror movies I love them but I can't watch them all by myself And even if I watch them with someone else you can bet your panties I will be screaming like a little girl jumping up at all the right moments and hiding under a blanket at least half the time BUT here's the thing while I love reading horror books not many of them actually scare me There is maybe a handful of books that really scared the living soul out of me and had me so terrified I could not sleep And Shutter is one of them Courtney is disturbingly good at setting the mood and describing blood chilling situations She had me holding my breath and looking anxiously around the room I could not look into the bathroom mirror at night without breaking out in cold sweat Shutter is seriously creepy at times It's cool and kind of nerdy and really magnificently badass Heck it's even funny at times And a helluva a lot sexy But for the most part it's really truly undeniably scary What do you want? I shouted at the entity pushing back to my feetVengeance it rasped I'll rip the heart right out of Helsing starting with youPart mystery part twisted ghost revenge story Shutter is one helluva debut novel It's so well written and so fantastically plotted it's really kind of hard to comprehend how this could be someone's very first book Alameda sure knows how to write She bursts into the YA book scene with a phenomenal story and I really can't wait to see where she'll take us next I am going to be obsessively stalking her carrier for sure and I don't even care how creepy that sounds


  7. says:

    45 starsI remember starting Shutter with a certain amount of skepticism cynical soul that I am In my own defense good YA horrors are few and far between – mostly they’re just creepy enough to justify the label and not a bit But Courtney Alameda proved me wrong in no time at all By page 30 I was gripping my poor Kindle tightly disgusted terrified and oddly thrilled all at the same time In all honesty I haven’t read a YA horror so scary and exciting since The Waking Dark by Robin Wasserman Shutter is exactly what I want all my YA books to be exciting different and most importantly romantic It has all the right ingredients but they’re put together in an entirely new way which makes it one of the best books I’ve read in a good long while Alameda combined mostly excellent characterization with an incredible sense of pacing to give us a truly memorable readThe basis of Alameda’s worldbuilding is a biological rarity – tetrachromacy – to which she gave paranormal properties Micheline Helsing descendant of the Van Helsing is a tetrachromat which allows her to see and classify ghosts better than anyone else Her family has always fought against the dead and Micheline carried on the tradition and obligation even after losing half her family to ghosts She and her father are the only remaining members of the Helsing family and they are both members of the Helsing Corps an agency that defends the cities from the supernaturalFor the most part Alameda’s characterization is superb Micheline and her crew are excellently developed each with a very distinct personality Their group dynamic is also very interesting as is Micheline’s relationship with Ryder However Micheline’s relationship with her father was somewhat exaggerated and his complete blindness to her needs seemed entirely too unrealistic As the main antagonist of the story at least emotionally Micheline’s father came across as completely self absorbed utterly mean and perhaps even two dimensional His character brought a very strong emotional layer but didn’t otherwise contribute Otherwise though Shutter was practically flawless The entire experience was reminiscent of Anna Dressed in Blood – the surprise the horror the excellent writing and the creepiness of the story which seems to be Alameda’s special talent Shutter seems to be a standalone which I usually support but in this case I feel that there’s room for and I hope she’ll decide to go back to these characters The sooner the better


  8. says:

    An unsolicited Advanced Reader Copy was provided by the publisher for reviewMicheline Helsing is a descendant from the Van Helsing lineage She's a hunter of monsters spirits and ghosts alike When one of her hunts goes awry and her and her team end up being cursed by a soul chain she learns that all of their lives are at stake Willing to defy her father she goes off with her team in search of the ghostBloody well done I was on the edge of my seat most of the time And it wasn't so scary as the cover seems to be Though there are certain scary scenes that I pictured the writing is just so easy to digest that I pretty much read this in one day It didn't drag on at all because there was so much action scenes it hardly stopped The whole capturing ghosts in cameras but isn't anything new since there's that video game that has the same theme but the whole Helsing aspect of it was uite good And I really liked Ryder's and Micheline's relationship Nor was it the focus I love books where romance isn't necessarily the main reason for the character to do anything But there are exceptions to my own rule Micheline is very stubborn and doesn't realize she loves the love interest romantically and I uite liked that She's so busy trying to save everyone that she doesn't know what to do with her heart or who to give it to Out of all the secondary characters I found Jude to be the most hilarious He just had the most funniest things to sayPick this one up if you love action with a side of romance and a smidgen of mystery I was expecting something else entirely but what I got was a page turner of a bookRATING 45UOTESI don't need you to save me I can save myself 70Was loving someone different from being in love with them? 238The extraordinary existed in what we did in life not in who we were 286We are not defined by our lack of fear—but rather by what we choose to do when facing the nightmare 342


  9. says:

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  10. says:

    I want to thank NetGalley and Macmillan Children's Publishing Group for allowing me to read this eARCShutter is a fast paced kick ass ghost storyMicheline Helsing is the descendant of Van Helsing That's right The one that put Dracula in his grave Van Helsing along with Mina and Johnathan Harker Dr Seward and the ever trusty historian Bram Stoker made up the elite suad of undead hunters Fast forward a few centuries and you have Micheline the last descendant to this legacy Micheline is a tetrachromat That means she can see the spiritual auras of the undead Zombies glimmered red Paranecrotic monsters emitted a pus colored yellow or orange light Hypernecrotics glowed in greens and icy blues and vampires were supposed to be cobalt They are mostly extinct so Micheline isn't certain Micheline is a ghost hunter She unlike everyone else can see ghosts Their violet light can not be seen with normal visionAt the beginning of the story we are thrown into a battered St Mary's Hospital Micheline and her team are there to identify the undead and take it out The boys in her team Ryder and Jude are somatic reapers they take care of monsters with rot and bones They also keep Micheline from being killed Last on the team is Oliver the last descendant of Bram Stoker He chronicles all their kills and makes sure everything is recorded he is also their techie Now that you know about the main characters Micheline and her boys What is this story about you ask? Well it's about an unstoppable ghost A baddie with a different ghostly makeup then Micheline is used to Not only does the ghost taunt her and her friends from the start the ghost puts a timer on their lives The ghost gives the crew one week to catch it or they will all die Of course the ghost doesn't tell them this they have to find all this out the hard way with research This book had me at the seat of my pants you could say Nail bitingthe whole nine yards It was a great ride I can't wait to read from this author in the futureConstantine Ghostbusters Dracula a kick ass female AWESOME