The Haunting of Alaziabel Cray by Chris Wooding

Being in a world with mythical beings and jobs that wouldn’t exist in our reality would be very interesting experience. Chris Wooding’s novel The Haunting of Alaizabel Cray, gives the reader a very vivid interpretation of this alternate world. With the demonic creatures of the wych kin and the dangerous job of the wych hunters who hunt them, Chris Wooding brings these elements together to make The Haunting of Alaizabel Cray a very exciting, suspenseful and a must read for teens.
Chris Wooding was born in Leicestershire, England in 1977. He attended the University of Sheffield and is currently a full time writer still living in England. He has won many awards for his writings such as the American Library Association Best Book for Teens Designation for The Haunting of Alaizabel Cray and the Children’s Book Council Outstanding International Book Award for Poison. With his numerous award winning novels, he is a must read author for teens.
The author in this book does a very good job at describing the various settings of the book. He vividly describes each location where, at that point, the characters are: “it reared over the surrounding buildings like a claw, a vast gothic monolith, a cathedral of spite that loomed a jagged a malicious evil. Towers and spires scratched the sky, leering gargoyles swarming over its surface, frozen in stone. Portions of it seemed to have melted into others, while some sections were sharply defined by rows of twisted blades and balconies. High arched windows soared above massive round blossoms or red glass.” This example shows the vivid detail Chris Wooding shows in describing his settings. With this, I as a reader can almost visualize this structure. Along with the vivid setting descriptions, he also incorporates vivid character descriptions. In the story he the author describes on of the characters as, “she was tall, a little too tall in proportion to her body, giving her the slightly graceless quality of a newborn foal. Her face, neither pretty nor ugly, was nevertheless infused with an inner radiance that lit her features from within and made them mesmerizing to watch.” Chris Wooding’s description of this woman makes me feel like I am standing right next to this person. As a reader u could visualize her standing next to you. This book also shows the reader the dark side, and shows why there is “haunting” in the title. The author very good at describing settings and characters and there is no exception to death. With a serial killer the author gives this killer and vividly describes how he kills his victims, “’Stitch-face!’ she breathed, and she knew then, as her eyes traveled to the long knife in his hand, that her bad star had got the best of her.” The reader can infer that the woman met her unexpected end and the killings only get worse as the epic story continues.
In my opinion, this book is a must read for teens. The only downside of this book is its abrupt ending and their being unanswered questions. Besides that, it is a very good read. It would have to be one of the better books that I have read this year and am definitely interested in looking for more novels by this author to read.





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