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Anderson Castle

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Length: 139 pages2 hours

Summary

Archie is seventeen years old and lives in Jersey City, New Jersey, he loves reading horror books but, unlike his friends, he has a special power: he is a psychic, he can foresee the future and he can sense things that the human consciousness ignores.

One day he receives a letter, without the return address, that informs him about the mysterious death of a distant relative from England, Lord Archibald Anderson III. The Lord appointed Archie as his only successor, and bequeathed an ancient castle near London to him, on condition that the boy arrives at the manor house strictly before the 31st of October, without explaining the reason.

Archie arrives at Anderson Castle in company of three classmates: the funny and affable Penny, the cocky womanizer Rigger, and the snob and very rich Daphne.

The four friends are welcomed by a man named Frank, who introduced himself as Archie’s uncle, the deceased Lord’s brother. However, the uncle seems eager to throw them out before the Halloween’s night begins.

The four friends find out very soon that the castle is actually haunted by furious demonic ghosts that will try to kill them in every way, and that Lord Archibald’s death is linked to the mystery of Anderson Castle.

Anderson Castle is a fantasy horror for teenagers, intentionally ironic, and its theme is typical of the ‘Haunted’ series, the haunted house with ghosts, following the novel series ‘Goosebumps’ from R.L. Stine.

The whole novel is a tribute to the book The Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde, since it follows its irony, the soft horror and the funny situations.

Hamlet by William Shakespeare is another book often cited: it’s not a coincidence that the title of every chapter sums up the happenings in Anderson Castle with a phrase from this famous tragedy.

The third important point is the exorcism of death. The four protagonists are threatened by supernatural beings that will bring each of them to reconsider their relationship with death, discovering new fears that they didn’t imagine.

The ghosts are not beings who live in peace, they mirror the flaws and weaknesses they had in life, and the demons are not an exception: their traits make them even more human than the protagonists.

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