Review: Asylum by Michael Chambers

Asylum by Michael Chambers

Kiersten and her friends love ghost hunting; their idea of a good time is rooting around haunted houses. Tonight was supposed to be no different. Kiersten is hoping the night’s spooky antics will take her mind off her troubles. This time they’re exploring Creighton Asylum, but tonight it’s not ghosts who threaten them.

Kiersten and her friends must try and survive as a very real killer chases them through the halls of the locked asylum. He knows every inch of the building by heart, and he has some nasty surprises in store for them.

Can Kiersten and her friends survive a night in the Asylum?

Asylum is basically every teen horror movie in novella form. If you’ve seen a few of those movies, there’s nothing new here, and it’s so short (99 pages) that there wasn’t time to flesh out the characters before they started dying off. I’ve seen a dozen horror movies just like it and I’ll see a dozen more.

Fortunately, I like this type of story. It’s not important to care about the characters. That’s not why I watch — or read — these horror stories. It’s the action, finding out who’s going to die and how, and who, if anyone, is going to make it out alive.

I was a little disappointed that there was virtually no focus on the ghost-hunting aspect of the trip, since that’s the type of read I was looking for when I first discovered this book. I love watching ghost-hunting shows, especially the ones set in abandoned mental hospitals. But of course it would be ridiculous to concentrate on hunting for ghosts when your friends are being killed off one-by-one, so I do understand why it’s not important.

If you like horror movies the way I do, this is a worthwhile read. If not, you probably won’t like Asylum.

3 stars



  1. I just read this tonight because of this review and now I don’t think I’m going to be able to sleep. I’m convinced I have a maniac lurking nearby!

    Good book though. The typos and such annoyed me but that stuffs easily irks me.

    • Lock your doors! Hm, I didn’t really notice the typos, but maybe I just overlooked them. This book kind of reminded me of one of those Wrong Turn movies (minus the inbred hillbillies). I saw a couple of them recently and one was set in an abandoned mental hospital. Of course, they weren’t as good as the original with Eliza Dushku.
      Jenna recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday: Better Off FriendsMy Profile

      • I’ve only seen the first one and I liked it.

        Do you have any recommendations for other books like this? I don’t love movies with gore but I don’t seem to mind reading about it.

        • Wrong Turn 3, 4, and 5 are on Syfy on Sunday.

          I haven’t read any other books like this, but the author has written some others. Maybe they’re along the same lines? Goodreads has some lists for popular YA horror. It might take some digging, but there are probably some on there like this. Anna Dressed in Blood, which tops both lists, was a DNF for me but I know a lot of bloggers loved it. Miss Peregrine was also a DNF for me.
          Jenna recently posted…Review: A Witch’s Aura by Devon VolkelMy Profile

          • I was looking through Michael Chambers’ other books and found one that you might like called Bad Girls.

            “Pine Hollow School for Girls isn’t the typical private school, and the students aren’t typical rich girls. The staff is top notch, the food is phenomenal, and the curriculum is cutting edge.

            Now if they could just do something about the murder rate…”