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Summer of Fear Paperback – 19 Apr 2011

4.8 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 226 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers; Revised edition (19 April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316099074
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316099073
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.9 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 260,628 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Lois Duncan is an acclaimed suspense author for young adults. She has published nearly 50 books for children, including I Know What You Did Last Summer, which was adapted into a highly-successful horror film, and Who Killed My Daughter?, a non-fiction book about the harrowing experience of her daughter's murder.


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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A deftly written and chilling supernatural tale for teenagers, with writing quality that can also be appreciated by adults. Rachel Bryant is a kind, bright 15-year-old girl growing up in New Mexico. So, when her aunt and uncle are killed in a car crash, she joins her parents and brothers in eagerly welcoming cousin Julia to the household. But soon, Julia begins to make Rachel uneasy. Why is Rachel's beloved wire-haired terrier so hostile to her, and why does he fall ill so soon after Julia's arrival? What's making Rachel's brothers - and her father - so obsessively devoted to the new arrival, and so hostile to Rachel? When Julia takes Rachel's boyfriend, Rachel's unease veers into dislike - and soon into fear as she realizes that Julia may in fact be practising witchcraft. But what is it that Julia ultimately wants?

Warning - spoiler alert but I'm not sure I can review the book without it:

I re-read this book recently after a 20-year gap, and I was in many ways very impressed. Duncan vividly evokes what it is like to be 15/16, and Rachel's anguish as her happy family life is destroyed. Julia is a clever creation - you can see why the other characters are drawn to her, and yet she is - subtly - terrifying. And I liked the way in which Duncan had researched the witchcraft plot, making it rather convincing, and cleverly leaving the ambiguity at the end about whether Julia really was a witch or not. However, re-reading the book as an adult, there were a few corners where Duncan could have been tighter plot-wise. For example, there's no hint of a family estrangement between the Bryants and the Grants - but in that case, why didn't the Bryants ever see photographs of Julia?
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Was hoping for the story I originally remembered, but has been 'added' to and mentions Harry Potter which ruined it for me.
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By A Customer on 3 Nov. 2000
Format: Paperback
I first read this book years ago and have always loved it. A perfectly thrilling read for a teenager who has a love of suspense and all things sinister!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Loved it
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars 94 reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great for any age 23 Aug. 2000
By Jason Paul Collum - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I first read SUMMER OF FEAR in high school and found it to be the first book I couldn't put down, actually reading it all the way through in one sitting! Lois Duncan takes typical teenage angst and self-conscious paranoia and spins them together in a web of horror and mystery.
Rachel is the number one priority of her family until her cousin Julia (parents recently deceased) moves in. The two bond as sisters at first, but when Julia begins to receive all the attention, Rachel's jealousy kicks into high gear. The spin here is when "accidents" and deaths become common place. Rachel suspects Julia to be responsible, but the jealousy Rachel's family has witnessed lend them to believe Rachel is just looking for attention, leaving her to discover her "cousin's" evil secrets and legacy.
A great suspense novel I still reread occasionally. Check out the movie starring a teenaged Linda Blair as "Rachel" and Fran (The Nanny) Drescher as her best friend!
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This is an awesome book! 6 Oct. 2000
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book is awesome until the last gripping page. When I checked this book out at the library I was a little nervous because the cover art looked really scary. It turned out to be one of my favorite Lois Duncan titles yet.
The book starts out when Rachel's aunt and uncle die and their teenage daughter Julia comes to live with Rachel's family. Julia is incredibly beautiful and Rachel is jealous of her right away. Then she starts trying to steal Rachel's boyfriend and Rachel's brother. Rachel finds really strange things in the room she shares with Julia, things normal teenage girls wouldn't have. Rachel tries to warn her Mother and Father but they just brush it off as jealousy. Then the things go from bad to worse. You just have to read the story to find out!
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lois Duncan has done it again with the book Summer Of Fear 25 April 2003
A Kid's Review - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The author, Lois Duncan, has brought out the characters in this book, giving each of them unique traits. Lois Duncan has written yet another mystery novel that is filled with suspense and excitement. The story opens up with Rachel a seventeen-year-old girl remembering a summer when a strange incident happens. Her cousin Julia comes to live with them. Julia ruins Rachel's life and plans to take over. Julia starts by stealing her boyfriends and her girlfriends. During this story Rachel tries to convince her family and friends that Julia is bad. But of course her family does not believe her.
As Duncan travels the characters through the book she brings them through all of her troubles. I thought this book was great and I hope you will want to read it too.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book from Lois Duncan! 24 Dec. 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have read many other Lois Duncan books. I was not planning on reading "Summer of fear" until my friend recommended it to me. She said that it was really good, so I took her suggestion and read it. I agree with her. It is a wonderful book about a 15 year-old girl named Rachel who lives in Albuquerque with her parents and her 2 brothers when her aunt and uncle and a buisness associate drive off the side of a cliff in the Ozarks. Her parents go to pick up Rachel's aunt and uncle's daughter Julia. Strange things start happening and Rachel is convinced that Julia is somehow connected to them. The rest of the family thinks she's crazy. Lois Duncan is an amazing writer and this book is surely one of her best books. So buy "Summer of Fear" and start reading!
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cousin of Fear 4 Feb. 2003
By Daniela - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
A reader's first impression of Summer of Fear will more then likely be a story of horror and murder. But they may find out that the book is more then horror, it is a suspenseful thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat. The book also contains a type of love that over powers everything and could save the lives of your loved ones.
Rachel Bryant had a normal life with loving family and friends and the perfect boyfriend, but once her aunt and uncle die in a car crash her cousin Julia, that she hasn't seen since she was 3, comes to lives with them. Rachel is excited about having another girl in the house but once she finally meets Julia her feelings change toward her. She feels some type of magic that surrounds her but it isn't pleasant magic, it's sort of like black magic. Things start changing around Rachel and her family and Rachel is getting suspicious; her family starts to surround Julia with ever lasting love and is very protective about her feelings. Her mom and dad say that they need to help Julia (her cousin) with this awful tragedy, but it doesn't seem to be affecting her in any way at all. She doesn't really care that her mom and dad died a horrible death. When she first got there Julia seemed ok about the event that occurred, like she never cried. When her parent's things arrived from their house she didn't want to look at them at all, like she didn't care that they were actually gone. She never seemed to cry or feel any guilt when someone mentioned her parents. She never ever talked about them! Then when she got a letter from a friend she seemed to ignore it and not care about what was in it or about the sender.
More weird things change around her; her brother Peter gets googol eyes for Julia and becomes this sensitive guy towards girls that he has never shown before. Rachel's best friend Carolyn starts being best friends with Julia and leaves Rachel out in everything. Her boyfriend Mike falls madly in love with Julia like she is this beautiful girl that can only appear in dreams. Her dog trickle starts growling at Julia, which is a very unusual behavior he has never shown before, sort of like he knows that there is something wrong with Julia and is just protecting his family. Rachel can't help getting annoyed and suspicious for all these weird exotic changes, because they all changed the night Julia arrived at their house
Rachel one day finds this odd shape wax figure in Julia's drawer; it has four legs, a body and a head and white hair sticking out of it. Rachel thinks it looks like a dog, but no it couldn't be for only witches use and make things like that. Could Julia be a witch? No, not Rachel's cousin! Or is she? Rachel knows that there is something more to her cousin then everyone thinks, and since they are blinded by her she will prove to them that Julia isn't who they think she is.
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