The Wrong Girl by C.J. Archer

July 24, 2013 Review 0 ★★★

The Wrong Girl by C.J. ArcherThe Wrong Girl by C.J. Archer
Series: Freak House #1
on May 25, 2013
Genres: Fantasy, Steampunk, Young Adult
Pages: 218
Format: eBook
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It's customary for Gothic romance novels to include a mysterious girl locked in the attic. Hannah Smith just wishes she wasn't that girl. As a narcoleptic and the companion to an earl's daughter with a strange affliction of her own, Hannah knows she's lucky to have a roof over her head and food in her belly when so many orphans starve on the streets. Yet freedom is something Hannah longs for. She did not, however, want her freedom to arrive in the form of kidnapping.

Taken by handsome Jack Langley to a place known as Freak House, she finds herself under the same roof as a mad scientist, his niece, a mute servant and Jack, a fire starter with a mysterious past. They assure Hannah she is not a prisoner and that they want to help her. The problem is, they think she's the earl's daughter. What will they do when they discover they took the wrong girl?

The Wrong Girl is a Gothic-styled novel, complete with girls locked up in the attic. Hannah Smith is a narcoleptic low-born girl who has been locked up in the attic with her best friend, an earl’s daughter who just so happens to set things on fire with her mind. But when Hannah is kidnapped and mistaken for the earl’s daughter, Hannah decides to pretend that she is the fire-starter they are looking for.

Hannah is taken to a place commonly called “Freak House” by Jack Langley, another fire starter who is determined to help Hannah learn how to use her gift. While she’s reassured that she’s not a prisoner, the truth is that when she tries to escape she is dragged back and put under a watch to make sure it doesn’t happen again. Sooner or later, though, they’re going to find out that Hannah isn’t the earl’s daughter.

This was a good book, with enough drama to keep it interesting, especially since so much of the book is all over the place. They take trips to London, and Hannah meets new friends along the way. The relationship between Hannah and Jack just doesn’t work for me as it doesn’t really feel real. Part of that is due to the fact that they can’t really touch, I’m sure, because touching set them ablaze and makes the fire start racing out of control.

At the end of the book a lot of questions are unanswered, and while there is going to be a next book, I’ve never been fond of the endings that are left open for the next book. I wish authors would remember that it’s going to be quite some time between books for the readers, so tie up those loose ends, please. Or at least enough of them so that when I get around to the next book I’m not completely lost.

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