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Peek Inside 8 Souls

When Chessie falls for a cute boy harboring a big secret, pieces of her life start to fall into place.

8 Souls

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Spending the summer across the street from the famous Axe Murder House in Villisca, Iowa isn't something Chessie Carpenter is looking forward to. But when she runs into David Higgins at his father's hardware store there's something about the cute boy that feels so familiar. If only she could pinpoint why.

When the "ghost squad" she calls to help her deal with the spirits invading her room turns out to be David and his friend, Mateo, the three sort out the clues that would explain the century old murder mystery. But the closer Chessie gets to David, the more everything she learns points to him somehow being involved. As her time in Villisca runs out, Chessie must figure out the ties that connect her, David, and the spirits haunting the Axe Murder House before it's too late...for all of them.


“This was a story with twists, murder, suspense and so many moments of shock!” -Laurie B., NetGalley

“I found the entire story intriguing.  It is well-written and so interesting, so much that I could not put it down and finished it in one sitting.  Definitely worth reading and I will be looking for more from this author!” -Jennifer S., Goodreads

Deliciously creepy!” -Erika C., NetGalley

“I could not put this book down! From the small town setting to the spooky goings on, I was totally hooked.” -Natalie K., NetGalley

“This book was SO creepy! There were times that I had to turn on all the lights in the house just so that I could continue reading (I can only read a t night!). My only complaint is that it ended too soon, I could have read another 200 pages easily.” -Arin B., NetGalley

Additional Details

ISBN: 9781640637948
Release Date: May 6, 2019
Page Count: 400
Imprint: teen
Genre: ghosts, paranormal, young adult
Tropes: coming of age/family/social issues, overcoming odds

Select Featured Reviews

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Geez, I wasn’t expecting this book to take the turn it did, totally caught me off guard.

Chessie has had scary dreams for years and I mean scary! And she is sent to spend some time with her grandparents. Wellllll... ye olde grandparents live across the street from a house where a family was murdered ...more

By Carrie May 31, 2019

8 Souls by Rachel Rust is a young adult read that is a paranormal fantasy with a bit of horror and a little romance. This fictional read is actually based on a real life tragedy that took place in Villisca, Iowa on the evening of June 10, 1912. Six members of a family and two guests staying with the ...more

By Schizanthus May 02, 2019

Seventeen year old Chessie dreams about the old farmhouse every night. She learned to keep her mouth shut about her dream house when she was young; it turns out that telling people you have a recurring dream about a house where eight people were murdered can land you in a psychiatrist’s office.

Ches ...more

By Evie April 22, 2019

Welcome to another Off Theme Review, my lovelies! This week’s read was an utterly fantastic Young Adult ghost story from Entangled Teen by one of my Speilburg Literary Agency sisters in arms! As many of you know, YA reads are a bit of a struggle for me. However, Rachel Rust’s 8 Souls was superbly ha ...more

By Sue May 06, 2019

8 souls by Rachel Rust.
All her life, seventeen-year-old Chessie has had recurring dreams about a little white farmhouse. Quaint? Not quite. The house is the site of the unsolved murders of Villisca, Iowa, where eight people were slaughtered in 1912. With her parents on the verge of divorce, Chessie ...more

By Jessica July 23, 2019

I am behind on feedback for things, but it is definitely past time for me to talk about how much I enjoyed this book. 8 Souls had a premise that I haven't seen in a story before, and I think that's probably what made me love this the most. See, Chessie has been having dreams about an old house for y ...more

By Taylor May 06, 2019

COVER: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 This cover is awesome. You usually associate pink as a happy color, right? Well, I'm loving that more creepy books are getting pink/hot pink covers. I love the blurred typography of the title and the large 8 in the center of the cover that looks like someone painted it on but was runnin ...more

By Kristi Housman April 03, 2019

When I saw a book about the murder house in Villisca, Iowa, I knew I had to request it.  If you don't already know, I am a bit obsessed with murder mysteries and paranormal.  I've actually looked at doing an overnight at the house, but I'm not sure I can stay there.  A bit more about the house later ...more

By Shelley May 02, 2019

*Source* Publisher
*Genre* Young Adult, Paranormal
*Rating* 3.5-4


8 Souls, by author Rachel Rust, tells the story of 17-year old Francesca (Chessie) Carpenter. Chessie has had recurring dreams about a little white farmhouse. Quaint? Not quite. The house is the site of the unsolved murders of ...more

By Brandy April 12, 2019

I loved this creepy ghost story and enjoyed the plot twist even more!! I won’t say too much to give anything away, but I’m impressed!! 5 stars!

I loved the characters, the setting, suspense and creep factor. Thank you for the ARC, Netgalley!!

#Ghosts ...more

By Kari January 05, 2020

8 Souls is exactly the type of YA supernatural story that I would have loved reading when I was a teen. Don't get me wrong, as an adult, I did enjoy it, but this is the type of book I was craving in high school.

In 8 Souls we follow Chessie (don't call her Francesca) as she stays with her grandparen ...more

By Hannah April 11, 2019

I wish this book was longer. The concept and all the bones of the story are incredibly interesting. I'm all-in on the spookiness and romance. The author does the best she can within the confines of the book, but some of these things are so complex and either get wrapped up too quickly and neatly or ...more

By Jennifer April 04, 2019

I really loved this book. Chessie is a 17 yo almost senior in high school. For her entire life she has dreamed of a big white farm house where 8 people were murdered by an ax-weilding maniac in 1912. The house is located across the street from her grandparents house in a small town in Iowa. Chessie ...more

By Maranda May 02, 2019

Once this story got started it was pretty good. Chessie has always had nightmares of the murders that take place in the same unknown house. Over and Over she dreams and now keeps them to herself in fear that her parents will again send her to a therapist. A trip to stay with her grandparents to Vill ...more

By Tammy May 13, 2019

I loved this mystery with a bit of paranormal thrown in. Chessie and David's relationship was just right for the story. Story line was woven together with the town's legend and Chessie's lifetime of dreaming the same dream. Ending was well done with good closure. Hard to say too much without giving ...more

By Erika April 04, 2019

This is the first book I read from this genre and I really enjoyed it more than I expected! When I saw that there'd be romance, I was worried that it would the whole plot. But I'm glad it was more of a subplot and most of the focus was on the mystery.

I loved the pacing of the story and the writing s ...more

By MyBookGeekWorld March 29, 2019

Advanced copy received to review from Netgalley which in no way affected my options!!!

My Fabulous Opinion #YAHorror

I really enjoyed this book! It started off by Chessie’s telling us about the reoccurring nightmare that she has had all her life, about a house where all the inhabitants were murdered b ...more

By Amber March 29, 2019

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Paranormal is definitely my favorite horror sub-genre! I was worried because the publisher included a note about the book being a romance and that was not what I signed up for with this, but I'm happy ...more

By Ashley May 06, 2019

A quick, engrossing story that revolves around an axe murder house that will send chills down your spine and keep you from turning the lights off at night. I was pleasantly surprised with Rust's book that took me for a wild, creepy ride that shocked me and was full of secrets and twists.

I am one wh ...more

By Nandika May 10, 2019

Read my full review here.

I would like to give NetGalley and the publisher a massive thank you for providing me with an eARC of 8 Souls in exchange for an honest review. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

I quickly was drawn to this nov ...more

By Stephanie May 05, 2019

'8 Souls' is a creepy and fantastic young adult horror novel that fans of the genre will devour. I'm a huge fan of YA horror and I'm also usually complaining that there isn't enough of it. When I read the description of this book, I was so excited and couldn't wait to get my hands on it. It didn't d ...more

By Katherine September 17, 2020

The plot overall took a surprising turn that I didn't see coming when I began the book and even better, I was completely wrong about the person who I suspected about the misdeeds (I actually love being wrong about book theories because that means the author did a great job with misdirection). I went ...more

By Lynndell June 05, 2019

A haunting that just won't stop!
Thanks to Entangled Teen and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review 8 Souls by Rachel Rust!
Spooky and ominous from the beginning; I was instantly hooked! Mysterious and recurring dreams about a house haunt Chessie; they have since she was little. These dream ...more

By Nicole July 15, 2019

Chessie dreams of an old and derelict house every night without fail. Turns out, that house is right across from her grandparents house and has a dark past. Its nicknamed the axe murder house, how terribly clever right? She is staying at her grandparents house for the summer while her parents are ge ...more

By Laurie May 07, 2019

This is the first book by Rachel I have read. I loved it. Murder, mystery, love, ghosts, what more can a person ask for in a suspense book. We first meet Chessie when she is going to stay with her grandparents for the summer so her parents can get a divorce. Chessies grandparents live across from wh ...more

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3.87 avg rating
Rachel Rust

About the author

Rachel Rust

Rachel Rust is a YA author who loves all things mysterious, romantic, and thrilling. Her favorite stories have twisty plots, and if it's a whodunit, she's all about it. When not making up stories, Rachel can usually be found with her family and their two dogs -- a pug and a chug (chihuahua/pug).

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