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The Well

3.42  ·  Rating Details ·  118 Ratings  ·  31 Reviews
If Hamlet thought he had issues, he should have talked to Cooper Warner.

His mother’s normally sunny demeanor has turned into something—homicidal.

And what’s worse, she has help in her hunt for Cooper: A ravenous monster living at the bottom of the old well in the woods behind their house. She’s determined to deliver her 14-year-old son straight into the creature’s eager clu
Paperback, 336 pages
Published September 21st 2009 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2009)
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Apr 12, 2010 Tez rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Robert Beveridge
A. J. Whitten, The Well (Graphia, 2009)

I've been having problems coming up with a decent review of The Well, because there's not a great deal to say about it. It's competently written, but no more than that; decently plotted, but no more than that; with characters who are adequate... you get the idea.

Supposedly based on Hamlet (though the connection is tenuous), The Well is the story of Coper Warner, a high-school student whose mother is trying to kill him. At least, that's the way he sees it; h
Drew Nickerson
Jan 13, 2010 Drew Nickerson rated it really liked it
The Well was moving from the first page you read. The author A.J. Whitten does a very good job describing the whole book. My interest was caught the whole book. If your in for a good book read this one.
Aug 07, 2009 Ann-kat rated it it was ok
Too shallow.
Too long-winded.
Too many analogies.
Too long-winded.
Too much repetition.
Too long-winded.
Not enough story development.
(Did I mention it was long-winded?)
Sep 27, 2012 Desmond rated it it was amazing
It was Cooper and Megan's three month anniversary. Cooper had wanted to have a nice dinner with Megan and a decent birthday, but that all went wrong thanks to the creature at the bottom of the well, at the back of the vineyard, behind his house. The creature had lured Megan down by using mind control. It was up to Cooper to climb down the well and take care of the creature, before it took care of them. So, Cooper climbed down the well and after 30 pages of suspense, Cooper triumphed over the hid ...more
Leigh Collazo
Aug 07, 2012 Leigh Collazo rated it it was ok

More reviews at Mrs. ReaderPants.

REVIEW: The Well is the perfect book for bona fide horror fans—it has a creepy cover, lots of gore and violence, slowly-building suspense, and a hero with a beautiful girlfriend. Although supposedly inspired by Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the book compares better to Stephen King’s It because the creature lives in a dark, damp, underground environment and communicates with and traps humans in order to live. Like King’s It, the creature is able to control the minds and b
May 24, 2011 Renae rated it it was ok
Shelves: why-did-i-bother
This book was a joint writing effort between bestselling author Shirley Jump and her teen daughter. It wasn't bad, but I had some issues...

1. I believe that it takes skill for someone to write convincingly as the opposite gender. In the case of this one, I couldn't quite buy it. I could sense the female brain behind it.

2. The narrative was peppered with conveniently placed, cliche pop culture references, usually in metaphors and comparisons. "The entire New England Patriots defensive line could
Jenni Merritt
Mar 15, 2011 Jenni Merritt rated it really liked it
Why I picked up this book:
I blame it on the synopsis. In all honesty, I don't really like the cover. But how could I resist a synopsis about a crazy mom, a monster in a well, and Hamlet?

My thoughts:
I have to start with a bit of a confession here: I am not a Shakespeare fan. I know... I have lived my whole life acting on the stage and devouring books as fast as I can snatch them. It almost seems an unwritten rule then that I must love and adore Shakespeare. But... as much as his writing is amaz
Sep 12, 2011 Jess rated it it was amazing
How nice of Cooper to bring me dinner, his body said, and his tongue, or what was left of it, came out to taste the air, to slither across what was left of his lips. And if I save a little of her for later...Such a sweet, sweet dessert.

When I pick up a horror or thriller novel I want it to appeal to me in a new way. A way to top any other books. The thought of a creature in a well is always creepy and a inserting idea to me so when I stumbled upon this book I new I found gold.

A.J. Whitten finds
Nov 09, 2009 Ann rated it liked it
Ages 12+ (a few "shits," zombified thrills)

14 year old Cooper's mother is trying to kill him. First by drowning him, then by pushing him into an abandoned well on his stepfather's property. Fortunately his brother was around to throw him a rope. But that's not the least of his problems. Because Cooper's pretty sure that there was something in the well with him. Something that wants to lure him back into its clutches. And the thing is, he's not wrong.

I wasn't so sure about this book at the beginn
A good scarey, but horrific novel. I'm not sure if it YA or adult. I think either age group would enjoy it.
Aug 28, 2013 Rebekah rated it it was ok
It had a good story and I liked the idea, but it just gave me a bad feelings. I don't know if I liked the book as a whole, but it wasn't a terrible book. I was slightly distracted by all the pop culture references in the books beginning. I honestly didn't want to keep reading it, but since I was reviewing it I had to finish. The last third of the book drew me in and I then became interested in the ending.

I have read somewhere that this book has similarities to Shakespeare's Hamlet, but I do not
Jun 14, 2011 Andrea rated it it was amazing
It is an amazingly awesome book and enjoyed reading it. My mom actually read it before me which was new, she also finished it at about the time I was ready to read it. While reading it I loved how it kept getting intense. I LOVE it when a book gets so intense where I start to ignore everything around me and I just can't stop reading. I look forward to reading Cellar and hope they may write more, even though they may not. I just love it so much that I want them to write more, so I have more of th ...more
Aug 14, 2011 Ally rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
I thought this book was very good. I love scary stories and this was perfect for me! At some parts in the book it got gruesome, but sometimes I like that in a book; it makes it unique because some scary stories dont have anything scary about's just creepy, not scary. However, I did not like that ending very much. It was weird and pretty stupid to end a good book like that. Anyway, I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and it's a great thriller to read at night! Great recommendation Katie!!! : ...more
Jul 23, 2011 Katie rated it it was ok
This book was...strange. I really thought I wasn't going to be able to put it down when I started reading, but I was a little disappointed. The plot seemed to drag on during some parts. About two-thirds of the way through the story became more interesting, and luckily this book was saved by its ending. I think I would probably recommend this book to others solely because of the last few chapters, but unfortunately I was probably happier than I should have been when I reached the last page.
Oct 15, 2011 Jess rated it it was ok
Hmmm...I checked this book out because I thought it was listed on a best of read for Halloween....turns out there's a different book of the same name. I was surprised they had it for Kindle at the library since I don't think they even had a paper copy when I searched for it. :|

But, I spent all night and read this one really quickly. I guess it was kind of scary, but overall I just thought it was a bit jumpy and disconnected. Ah well, a night spent reading a book you didn't mean to read.
Tinae Goodell
Nov 15, 2015 Tinae Goodell rated it really liked it
Another interesting book by this author. I like the twist on hamlet. Interesting
Mar 25, 2010 Anne rated it liked it
Excellent choice for those who like Stephen King and Dean Koontz.

Cooper's mom tries to kill him by throwing him down a well where there is a 200 year old blood crazed monster dwelling at the bottom. He manages to escape, but no he can hear the monster's voice in his head. Somehow he must kill the monster before it kills him - and the rest of his family, his girlfriend, and his dog.
Catalina Sennett
Aug 13, 2010 Catalina Sennett rated it it was ok
I thought this book sounded interesting so I gave it a try, but I kept skipping through most of the book. There wasn't really anything there to keep satisfied. I did like the story, I thought it was a very original idea, but it could have been better, much better.
Aug 12, 2009 Eric rated it liked it
Quick fun read, but repetitious and too many product placements and long winded analogies. Predictable plot, with weak character development. I would recommend this for those freshman in highschool, but not for adults. It reads like a horror flick.

Aug 02, 2009 Ken rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya, finished-in-2009
More hilarity than horror here (unintentional, I think). Creature at bottom of well covets the life of a 15-year-old boy so he can walk the earth again (and not be all wet, like the book). Too long. Too everything.
Gabe Densmore
Sep 18, 2013 Gabe Densmore rated it really liked it
I got this book thinking that it was going to be a terrifying book, but it was more like a thriller that had page-turner moments. It was good though, I recommend it.
Oct 27, 2009 Jennifer rated it liked it
Good read for middle school kiddos who like suspense. The ending leaves it open for a possible sequel.
Oct 11, 2010 Kelaine rated it liked it
Shelves: teens, gothic-horror
Creepy horror. Ties to Shakespeare's Hamlet. Written by teen/adult writing duo.
Mike Kic
Excellent horror/mystery that will especially appeal to reluctant readers.
May 26, 2014 Hannah rated it it was ok
Ok. I just remember that this book scared the bejeebies out of me.
Oct 12, 2013 Heena rated it it was amazing
This book was just incredible. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.
Mar 20, 2013 Anne-Lyse rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jenna P.C
Apr 18, 2010 Jenna P.C marked it as to-read
looks creepy and good :)
Jun 07, 2009 Martha rated it it was ok
Shelves: teens, middle-school, 2009
Very intense.
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A.J. Whitten is the pen name for well-known romance author Shirley Jump and her teenage daughter, Amanda Jump.
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