Chill and Thrills: A Review of SOMETHING STRANGE AND DEADLY by Susan Dennard

Something Strange and Deadly (Something Strange and Deadly #1) 
Something Strange and Deadly
Susan Dennard
400 pages
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: July 24th, 2012
Source: ARC from Publisher
Rating: LOVED

The year is 1876, and there’s something strange and deadly loose in Philadelphia…

Eleanor Fitt has a lot to worry about. Her brother has gone missing, her family has fallen on hard times, and her mother is determined to marry her off to any rich young man who walks by. But this is nothing compared to what she’s just read in the newspaper—

The Dead are rising in Philadelphia.

And then, in a frightening attack, a zombie delivers a letter to Eleanor…from her brother.

Whoever is controlling the Dead army has taken her brother as well. If Eleanor is going to find him, she’ll have to venture into the lab of the notorious Spirit-Hunters, who protect the city from supernatural forces. But as Eleanor spends more time with the Spirit-Hunters, including their maddeningly stubborn yet handsome inventor, Daniel, the situation becomes dire. And now, not only is her reputation on the line, but her very life may hang in the balance.

   Infused with the romantic period of the 1800’s and the apocalypse, Susan Dennard’s Something Strange and Deadly is a thrilling read. It’s The Forest of Hands and Teeth meets the Victorian era. It’s perfect.

   Eleanor Fitt of the Philadelphia Fitts is a witty, strong-headed main character readers will love to love. Her sarcastic comebacks and unfailing love for her older brother make her an all-too-relatable protagonist and one readers will root for till the end.

   While Eleanor strongly impacts the story, what really defines Something Strange and Deadly is Susan Dennard’s plot. The plot winds and weaves. Chills and thrills. You’ll hear creaks in your empty house, leave the lights on as long as you can, and still never put it down. Because it’s impossible to shut the book until it’s done. And even then, the debut will linger in your mind, as concluding as the ending is.

   Something Strange and Deadly is unputdownable at its best. It’s unpredictable, though I figured out a major plot twist long before Eleanor did. The characters are a dynamic bunch, each with their own set of unique characteristics, and with their own story to tell.

   Something Strange and Deadly is a must-read. If there is one novel to look out for this July, it’s Susan Dennard’s debut. Trust me. It won’t disappoint.

Find Susan on Twitter | Website | Goodreads


Hafsah Faizal is a YA author, designer, and blogger. Her designs have graced the sites of New York Times bestselling authors, bloggers, and more. She resides in Texas, with her family.



  1. Reply


    July 7, 2012

    I am really excited for this one! Great review.

    Teresa @ Readers Live A Thousand Lives

  2. Reply

    Little Miss Becky

    July 7, 2012

    A must-read!? I'm going to have to make time for this one! Glad to hear you loved it!

  3. Reply


    July 7, 2012

    I'm glad you liked this one. I've been seeing this beautiful cover for so long, but haven't read many reviews. It's going on my list! Thanks.

  4. Reply


    July 7, 2012

    I'm really looking forward to this one. It sounds awesome!! Great review!!

  5. Reply

    Mary @ BookSwarm

    July 7, 2012

    I do love unpredictable. With reading so many book, it's hard to surprise me with plots sometimes–guess I appreciate books that have those twists even more now. Definitely going to have to read this one!

  6. Reply


    July 7, 2012

    Wow. I absolutely have to read this now! What a great review!

  7. Reply


    July 7, 2012

    Wow! What a great review Hafsah! I'm convinced this is a book I must try! I really love the idea of the setting and the plot. On my pile it goes…

  8. Reply

    Mimi Valentine

    July 7, 2012

    The Forest of Hands and Teeth meets the Victorian era? Okay, I'm absolutely sold! x) Wow, I was never thinking of reading this book before, but after everyone's raving reviews for it, I can't wait to give it a shot! I love steampunkish books and I'm starting to really love zombies too, so I think that mixing the two together is nothing short of genius! :)

    Amazing review, Hafsah! <3

  9. Reply


    July 7, 2012

    ARRR GIVE ME THIS ONEEEEE Y_____________y i'm dying to read it….

  10. Reply

    Courtney N.

    July 7, 2012

    This book sounds amazing :D
    (Oh, when you click the picture, it takes you to the book The Selection on goodreads, not to this books)

  11. Reply

    Vyki @ On The Shelf

    July 8, 2012

    I am really looking forward to this one. Love the set up of your blog, new follower!

  12. Reply


    July 9, 2012

    I was very impressed with Something Strange and Deadly. This was my official first zombie book and it didn't disappoint. I seriously couldn't put this down and it only took me three nights to read. I am very much looking forward to A Darkness Strange and Lovely.

  13. Reply

    Danielle West

    July 28, 2012

    Zombie's and the Victorian era? Yes. And the cover is gorgeous!

  14. Reply

    Two Chicks On Books

    July 29, 2012

    LOOOOVVVEEEEDDDDD This book and your review!!! I actually participated in the blog tour a few days ago, and Susan wrote a kick ass and really long scene from Daniel's POV it was awesome :D


  15. Reply


    August 7, 2012

    Your review was like reading a book. It had me ready to hunkerdown for a scary story. Made me want to go pick it up now!

  16. Reply


    November 9, 2012

    I really liked this one. I only wanted MORE zombies. Yes I know. Crazy, but I can't wait for book 2!!

  17. Reply

    Wren B.

    December 15, 2012

    The cover is really amazing and I love the title.

  18. Reply


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  19. Reply

    Alyssa Susanna

    January 29, 2013

    Sooo, I have a copy of this book, this means that I should read it, right?! I have been putting it off (along with quite a few others), because I know that I own them and that they are not going anywhere! I will read this one soon! Great review!