Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Harrowing” as Want to Read:
The Harrowing
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview read book

The Harrowing

by
3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  1,185 ratings  ·  235 reviews
Baird College's Mendenhall echoes with the footsteps of the last home-bound students heading off for Thanksgiving break, and Robin Stone swears she can feel the creepy, hundred-year-old residence hall breathe a sigh of relief for its long-awaited solitude. Or perhaps it's only gathering itself for the coming weekend.

As a massive storm dumps rain on the isolated campus, fou
...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published August 22nd 2006 by St. Martin's Press
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Harrowing, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Harrowing

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley JacksonHell House by Richard MathesonSorrow's Point by Danielle DeVorThe Woman in Black by Susan HillHeart-Shaped Box by Joe Hill
Best Haunted House Fiction That Isn't 'The Shining'
46th out of 119 books — 114 voters
Pet Sematary by Stephen KingThe Wide Game by Michael  WestCinema of Shadows by Michael  WestSpook House by Michael  WestPoseidon’s Children by Michael  West
Spooky Books
73rd out of 113 books — 31 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,243)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Trin
A simple ghost story stretched rather too long and with a bit too much emo for my tastes. Robin is a college student with angst—do you hear me? ANGST—who stays in her dorm over Thanksgiving instead of going home to her crazy (and ANGST-causing!) mom. She meets four other outcast-types, and then they all accidentally raise an evil spirit. As one does.

The first few séance-y scenes are the best in the book; Robin’s emo, which makes the first section drag, is finally sidelined, and there’s some fun
...more
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Angels Weep For Goodreads)
The Harrowing was a pretty good book to read around Halloween. It was nicely scary, and the story idea was quite interesting. Ms. Sokoloff integrated Jewish creation lore into this story. I thought that it gave this story an individuality for a ghost story/supernatural horror story. This was a major strength of this novel.

I also really liked Robin, the main character. She starts this story at a complete low, but shows courage, ingenuity, and strength of character that is crucial for the ordeal
...more
Charlene
I read this with my horror group at Shelfari. I picked up this book during a free promotion by the author.
This is a story set at a Midwestern college campus. A handful of students are staying on campus over the Thanksgiving holiday. Of course, this is when things start to happen.
One of the students finds a Ouija board and together the group makes contact with a former student at the college, Zachary. From there, things go from bad to worse.
I don't want to spoil any part of the plot, but I can sa
...more
Kasia S.
As much as I wanted to adore this novel from beginning to end I have to say that it was a mixed bag of nuts. The first half was brilliant, well not literary genius but tantalizing and gripping, I was at the book's mercy as it kept tugging at me, begging to be read some more. The second half took a nose dive into the juvenile corner that it never managed to climb out of, overall I liked it but the ending fizzled out, if the author kept the momentum and originality going and actually made it scary ...more
Jeannie Sloan
This is a scary book.I read it in one sitting on a rainy day and boy was I spooked.The atmosphere outside may have had something to do with it but even if it was sunny I think that this book would have scared me quite a bit.
I think that my Goodreads friends will do themselves a favor by reading this book(especially Danielle and Grace).
There were interesting characters and the plot moved right along so that I didn't need to skip any pages which I tend to do with most books because they can get bo
...more
Bookaholics
The Harrowing by Alexandra Sokoloff
Mass Market Paperback - October 30, 2007
4 Stars

Robin Stone is a troubled young woman. Her means of escape from her unbalanced mother was by running away to college paid with guilt money from her absentee father.
Still, she remains unhappy and depressed in the academic arena and feels like a shadow nobody will miss if she's gone. When Thanksgiving comes, she stays in the echoing Mendenhall dormitories rather than going home to her mother for the long holiday
...more
Carrie Hinkel-Gill
One of the things that I've noticed about many good books is that the first chapter gets overlooked in the revision process in favor of getting the rest nearly perfect.

That was the case here with this book. The beginning felt clunky. I honestly felt that the book should have started on page 7 with the following sentence: "In the two months she'd been at Baird, she made zero friends."

It wasn't until this point that I was actually drawn into the story. All the stuff before that felt, unnecessary
...more
Carolyn (Book Chick City)
The Harrowing is marketed as 'Scream meets The Exorcist' and I'd say that is a fair description. This is the debut novel of an author who's also a screenwriter, and it shows. This book reads like a movie; it's scary, jumpy, spine-chilling and keeps you on the edge of your seat. It's well written and yet has a nice easy flow to the prose without being too simplistic. The imagery is vivid and the atmosphere is tense.

Robin, the main character, starts out as a very paranoid, self-pitying young woman
...more
Kathleen Valentine
This is quite a nice little ghost/monster story! Five "discarded" college students, with nowhere to go for Thanksgiving, stay at school in an old dormitory where they discover a dilapidated Ouiji board. They decide to see what it has to say and - well - you can guess the rest. There are no great surprises but it is well-written and nicely paced with wonderful atmosphere and some very interesting characters. I thought it was a bit like "The Breakfast Club" meets Ghost Story but it also reminded m ...more
Annie
"The Harrowing is a basic haunting tale, but Sokoloff’s dreamed up an origin tale that draws from a source I haven’t really seen utilized before. I was impressed with her fresh take on a familiar template, and pleased that she managed to scare me."

http://superfastreader.com/the-harrow...
Peter
Baird College Mendenhall dorm will be empty for this Thanksgiving break. Well almost empty! Robin Stone decided that she has nothing to go home for. Little did Robin know that there were four other students who had the same plans. The others were Patrick, a jock; Cain, a musician; Lisa, a tease; and Martin, a scholar. A massive storm dump wind and rain on the isolated campus.The five stumbled upon each other in the student lounge.Right from the beginning they felt that there was a presence in th ...more
Kate
Robin is spending the Thanksgiving holiday alone at her dorm, and she's plenty happy to be alone (even if it's a bit creepy)... but she isn't alone. Neither are the four others at the dorm, not after they pull out a Ouija board and call up a spirit. The spirit claims to be the ghost of a student named Zachary, but Martin thinks otherwise. He's convinced they are accessing Jung's collective unconscious, and he wants to keep it going as an experiment, despite the creepy stuff happening now...

I was
...more
Elizabeth
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lisa
This was an excellent read - but be warned, I wouldn't advise reading this at night. Or on your own... Unless you like scaring yourself to pieces.

The uneasy atmosphere of the story creeps up on you slowly and subtly and it's one hell of a ride from start to finish. With sympathetic characters, a fascinating creation myth, and one incredibly scary adversary, there's lots to enjoy.

Yes, there are the gothic story tropes: the Ouija board, the misfit students, a deserted dorm building. But tropes are
...more
Gokce ~Muslin Myst~
I gotta admit I didn't expect so much from this book, so it took me a while to actually read it until now. The plot remainded me so much of a teen slasher movie plot, you know, the ones where young people come together, for a ghost seance in an gothic looking school during Thanksgiving holiday as in this one, and one by one they get murdered, after unleashing an evil spirit that is. These movies usually go with a line as lame as, 'what started as an innocent game has become a race against evil.. ...more
Dianne
May 23, 2012 Dianne marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-have
Free TODAY 5/23/12

Baird College's Mendenhall echoes with the footsteps of the last home-bound students heading off for Thanksgiving break, and Robin Stone swears she can feel the creepy, hundred-year-old residence hall breathe a sigh of relief for its long-awaited solitude. Or perhaps it's only gathering itself for the coming weekend.

As a massive storm dumps rain on the isolated campus, four other lonely students reveal themselves: Patrick, a handsome jock; Lisa, a manipulative tease; Cain, a br
...more
Kristen
"The Harrowing" by Alexandra Sokoloff is about a group of five misfit college students who come together one Thanksgiving weekend when they each decide, separately, to stay on campus rather than to go home for the holiday. The story really takes off when one of the five, Lisa, finds a Ouija board and suggests they try to contact spirits. While I found that I felt the need to finish the book, it wasn't because I couldn't wait to find out what happened, but because I felt like I had already put to ...more
Stephen
Ever since Shirley Jackson's The Haunting of Hill House scared the living hell out of me at age 11 (even if I didn't completely understand it all at the time), I've enjoyed stories that involve supernatural nasties. I love gloomy old houses, spooky woods, creaking noises at night, and all those things that hint at the existence of unseen entities lurking at the edge of the real world. Something about ghosties and ghoulies can still hit a few vital nerves that the most awful of real-world horrors ...more
Mia
Deep sigh. Another book my library recommended for fans of Sarah Waters' The Little Stranger. I can only surmise that library staff believe that having a photograph of a large building on the cover makes the books enough alike to carry that recommendation. Or perhaps they recommend The Harrowing because, like The Little Stranger, it is printed on white paper with black ink.

In other words, the two books have nothing in common. Reading the Harrowing is like reading the screenplay to a highly unori
...more
Matt
Rare (I suppose) is the horror novel that uses Kabbalah as its jumping-off point. Rarer still, these days, at least, is a novel in which cell phones are only minimally present, and in which the characters visit an Internet cafe. First published in 2006, though, Alexandra Sokoloff's The Harrowing (A Ghost Story) exists in that interstitial period between the advent of the Internet and its omnipresence via smart phones and wireless networks. And guess what? Those anachronisms work in The Harrowing ...more
Jonathan
A well-crafted ghost story that showcases Sokoloff's history as a screenwriter. This story straddles the line between psychological thriller and paranormal chiller, as five outcast students (each with his or her own baggage) stay behind in their secluded college hall during semester break.

The five gravitate toward each other out of boredom and loneliness and also due to a historical discovery of a tragedy that occurred in the same hall to a former student many years ago.

Throughout the book, Soko
...more
Jim Dooley
When I finished reading the book, I remembered that a film had been released some time ago called OUIJA, and how I would absolutely have to see it if this had been the source material. Well, it was not...and I suppose Hasbro might have had a few concerns about the stronger elements. Still, it was a missed opportunity.

One of my all time favorite genres is the ghost story, which is surprising considering how often the stories are barely adequate. This one, though, really delivers and kept drawing
...more
»jαу
The Harrowing by Alexandra Sokoloff is probably one of the best horror books that I've read; however, it's not like I've truly gotten into many horror novels. It really had the vibe of The Breakfast Club, but The Breakfast Club meets Caspar the unfriendly ghost. In the beginning of the book the main character, Robin, was quite annoying with her melodramatic "I wanna die" scheme but after reading a few chapters I got over it. I was definitely hooked by the book as soon as I started reading it. I ...more
Gill
This is a goodun! I was really hooked from the first chapter. I enjoyed the plot, pace and characters.
Helen
Thoroughly enjoyable ghost story, creepy, atmospheric, quite fast-paced and not too predictable, as many of these types of story often are. It was good to read something with genuine tension and atmosphere without being overly reliant on the gore-factor (which I enjoy as well, but gotta have variety!). Would highly recommend for those who enjoy paranormal/ghostly novels.
Victoria
Well, this book was a little spooky and a little silly. It read very much like your typical horror movie, but that was what made it fun! A perfect read for a stormy night, home alone; I enjoyed it quite a bit, actually. It was a lot of fun, with a surprising amount of twists and turns for a short book. Interesting and chilling - Ouija boards always make for creepy stories!
Eric
I don't know about you, but I loved The Breakfast Club when it first came out (1985, I think). And so, apparently, did author Alexandra Sokoloff. The Harrowing turns the iconic John Hughes movie into a ghost story. Fair warning: You'll have the song "Don't You Forget About Me" by the Simple Minds in your brain the entire time.
Jo
I don't know if this would be considered New Adult or not. The protagonists were college age. There is a lot of language, sex and alcohol and drug abuse. It was a well done story, and I really liked the character of Robin. She transforms from an outsider to a girl who knows her worth and the value of her life.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 74 75 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Nightmare House (Harrow House, #1)
  • Asylum Lake
  • Dead Spell
  • The Home
  • Twisted Vengeance (Twisted Vengeance, #1)
  • Loss
  • The Grave Artist
  • Haunted House
  • Dark Corners
  • Naomi's Room
  • Night Stalks the Mansion: A True Story of One Family's Ghostly Adventure
  • The Tower
  • The Painted Darkness
  • The Real
  • A Soul to Steal (The Sanheim Chronicles, #1)
  • Berserk
  • Asylum (Birch Harbor, #1)
  • Manchester House
552457
I'm the Thriller Award-winning and Bram Stoker and Anthony Award-nominated author of the Amazon bestselling crime and supernatural thrillers The Harrowing, The Price, Book of Shadows, The Unseen, The Space Between, and the new Thriller Award- nominated Huntress/FBI thriller series: Huntress Moon, Blood Moon. The New York Times Book Review has called me "a daughter of Mary Shelley" and my novels "s ...more
More about Alexandra Sokoloff...
The Unseen Huntress Moon (Huntress/FBI Thrillers, #1) Book of Shadows The Price Blood Moon (Huntress/FBI Thrillers, #2)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »