BY LEA HARMON SUTTER
(April 10) Well, here I am on this island everyone calls mysterious and frightening, and I hope you are as curious as I am to find out if any of the stories are true. I tend to be skeptical. I have a bunch of older brothers who loved making up stories to terrify me, and I quickly learned not to believe any scary story anyone ever told me.
I suppose it’s odd to being a travel blog by saying that no one comes here. But before I can being to describe the unique charms and dark mystique of Cape Le Chat Noir, I really have to start with that fact.
No one comes here.
Of course, no one really believes the island is cursed. But there are too many frightening stories from its past to ignore. The dozens of Spanish ships that mysteriously sank off the island shores in the 1600s? The rumors of dark-magic rituals? The stories—that many believe to this day—of the living dead walking the island in broad daylight?
If you are an adventure traveler like me, those all seem like good things!
But the fact is, no one has paid much attention to this island of whitewashed shacks, tall pine forests, fishing villages, and eccentric islanders—despite the fact that you can almost reach out and touch the place from the Outer Banks because of South Carolina.
Located a hop, skip, and a splash from the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, vacationers have avoided Cape Le Chat Noir like—shall I say it?—a black cat crossing their path.
For you history nerds, here’s the 411: The island was annexed by the English sometime around 1650. They had little interest in it. Too small and too far from the mainland. Most English settlers chose the Roanoke Colony to the north (and we all know how that worked out).
Small groups of nomadic American Indians found their way to the island. Spanish pirates arrived later, sometimes unhappily, because they watched their ships go down just offshore.
Yes, this part of the ocean is known as the Graveyard of the Atlantic. You can Google it. Don’t bother to look for a reason why all the ships sank. No one can tell you. But this was the beginning of the island’s bad reputation.
When French traders arrived and heard the stories, they gave the island its unlucky name. I haven’t been able to find out what they were trading. Most likely rum or some concoction like it. The islander’s I’ve met seem to drink from morning till night. And it that’s your idea of travel adventure, go ahead—pack your bags.
I’ve saved the best (or worst) for last. Here’s the most interesting historical detail—and it’s definitely creepy. Especially with frightening forecasts of a big hurricane heading this way.
I don’t want to talk about the hurricane now. I’m pretending it’s not going to happen.
You see, Le Chat Noir was devastated by one of the most powerful storms in hurricane history. It was the Labor Day Hurricane of 1935. And I have ever finger crossed that history is not going to repeat itself now.
Copyright © 2012 by R. L. Stine
Witty, creepy and compulsively readable, R.L. Stine defined horror for a generation with his iconic Goosebumps series, but now he ventures back into more grown-up territory with a terrifying new novel.
Travel writer Lea Sutter finds herself on a small island off the coast of South Carolina during a merciless hurricane. Barely escaping with her life, Lea discovers orphaned twin boys and impulsively decides to adopt them. The boys, Samuel and Daniel, seem amiable and grateful, but soon dark things start happening and all signs point to the orphans being more sinister than sweet.
For the millions of readers who grew up on Goosebumps, and for every fan of deviously inventive horror, this is a must-read from a beloved master of the genre.
Hardcover Book : 384 pages
Publisher: Touchstone/Imp Simon & Schuster ( October 16, 2012 )
Item #: 13-541968
Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.25 x 0.96inches
Product Weight: 15.0 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
I remember reading all of R L Stein books at a young age.I loved them. As everything else I outgrew him. I was expecting this book to blow me away like they did when I was a teenager. Not so much. I hate putting any book down because I always want to give every single book I read, a good chance. This was a very hard book for me to finish.
I have to say I never read RL Stines young adult books, but I'd seen the movies and knew he excelled at what he wrote. When I heard he was doing an adult book, I was pretty excited.
It didn't take long to feel let down. The writing is amateurish at best. The characters were very simple and one sided. I didn't really care of any of them. The ending came out of left field. There are gruesome, gory parts, but I wouldn't say any of it scared me. I'd say this is a book perhaps teenagers might like. Quick, fast food reading. Shame, really.
I loved R.L. Stine when I was growing up. So I was excited to try this book out. I really wish I hadn't wasted my money. I had to force myself through this book. I couldn't stand the characters and the way they talked throughout the whole book was highly annoying. And I feel that the ending was god awful. It ended so abruptly and it felt like it was just slapped together. Like he didn't know what to do with the ending. I won't be keeping this one on my bookshelf.
Found it to be an interesting read.