Cover Image: The Upside Down of Nora Gaines

The Upside Down of Nora Gaines

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

Wow I mean I have to mention that I am in love with the cover... but more importantly the contents inside the book are amazing. I love Nora and I love Rebel, and I just love this story. Not going to lie I would move away asap if a book was sending me warning signs, but I was excited to live vicariously through Noras experience. I think Rebel is an interesting character who has parents with even more interesting jobs! I think that he is someone who is cute and would do anything for the girl he loves even if he's scared which I think is sweet. Overall I thought this was a fun YA mystery, and I enjoyed every bit of it!
Was this review helpful?
Incredibly creative!  This book had three stories wrapped into one: 1) Nora's everyday life, 2) her interaction with the ghosts, and 3) the story within the book.  All three come together in the end to make a grand finale filled with action, ghosts, and beasts.  While it was all well put together, there was a huge part of the book where nothing seemed to happen and it dragged. I am a fan of ghosts stories but the story within the journal was not to my taste and found my mind drifting for these parts.  I enjoyed this and would recommend it to fans of the paranormal and fantasy.
Was this review helpful?
'The Upside Down of Nora Gaines' by Cathrina Constantine is a refreshing fantasy YA read that'll keep you turning pages until the very end. This book has the ability to hook you completely to the story. At times it felt like a perfect Halloween read for this year, as this fantasy had a spooky shade to it. Then again, there were elements of mystery and romance as well which made the book all the more special. 

The story's about Nora Gaines (evident from the title), and she has to ability to see visions of supernatural beings. Soon after Nora moves into an old farmhouse with her mother, things take a sinister turn. Nora finds an old book-journal which can show her glimpses of the past of the house they're living in. The secrets keeps haunting Nora and warns her of danger coming her way. 

Meanwhile, Rebel, who has grown up in the town and has lost both his parents to the farmhouse mystery; keeps getting drawn to Nora. He has his own battles to fight and demons to confront. While Rebel struggles to uncover the truth behind his parents death, he also knows he has to protect Nora from the evil of the farmhouse. This was definitely a book that I would recommend. 

Thank you to Netgalley and Xpresso Book Tours for proving this book.
Was this review helpful?
This was a pretty interesting story it felt more fantasy vs. paranormal but that was ok.  The cover is what grabbed my attention and I am so glad it did.  I liked the story and the characters, this one was not a favorite but it was worth the read.
Was this review helpful?
I don’t know what I was expecting with this book, but it was delightfully spooky! It has everything a YA book should contain… angsty teen romance, parent drama, grief, growth of characters, and a great storyline! I had to actually keep the lights on while reading, it gave me such spooky vibes. I read it in two sittings, and can’t wait to see what else this author creates.
Was this review helpful?
Rating: 5/5⭐️

I was given this eARC to read for my honest review. 

O.M.G! What a great book!
This is a must read!

Nora and her mother, Clare, move from their city life to small town and buy a vacant farmhouse. Strange things start to happen for Nora after she finds a journal written back in time. It tells a tale of a phantom beast, a sorcerer, and a young teen girl. Noras life is never the same after reading the first pages of the journal.

Wow, wow wow! This book was amazing! This book has mystery, action, a little bit of horror, romance and fantasy. Catharine Constantine is an amazing author, she has an inimitable way of writing. Her storytelling is brought to life, amazingly tuned to details and the way the characters are brought to life you feel like you know them. 
I definitely recommend this book to 16+ 

Thank you NetGalley and Catharine Constantine for writing an amazing book
Was this review helpful?
Eerie and unpredictable describe this read to get lost in until the very end.

Nora's life is no longer balanced, since her parents got a divorce. She's given up so much to support her mom, even moving to a farm in the middle of nowhere. But she's not happy, especially when her ability to sometimes see the supernatural kicks in. Something is wrong with the house, and as she gets to know several people in town, her suspicions grow. Unfortunately, it might be more dangerous than she even suspects.

This was a wonderful, chilling read about ghosts, small towns and dark secrets. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Nora has some problems to deal with, but she handles them with the finesse of a teen—sometimes better than others but as best as she can. It was easy to feel for her and understand her decisions. Her relationship to her mother was also well done as the love between them is evident and ever-so rocky...as is real life. It was interesting to dive into and see that things aren't smooth and take work, but family is still family.

The plot was gripping and carried more than a few unexpected moments. I enjoyed the dance between the past and present, and the paranormal side was a dark treat. Add in the boy from town and other characters, and it is an easy tale to get lost in.
Was this review helpful?
I am afraid this was not for me - and as such it is hard to give it proper feedback. The voice didn't resonate with me and I couldn't engage with the book. The characters annoyed me, the horror/supernatural elements left me cold (no horror or wonder or curiosity in me) and I wasn't very interested in continuing, I didn't manage to finish the book. This is probably due to personal taste, I thought it was a little overly written, and was missing something.
Was this review helpful?
This one missed the mark for me.  The writing is confusing and poorly done, the characters feel flat and stereotypical, and the story itself isn't all that interesting.  This honestly felt like a throw-away YA novel, with all the uninspired cliches that come with it.
Was this review helpful?
I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. 

Nora and her mother move into an old farmhouse. Shortly after their arrival Nora begins to have disturbing visions of horrific things happening in the home and is able to sense paranormal oddities. Can Nora solve the mysterious murders from years ago in the old farmhouse? I do not normally read these types of books but this was a quick read with some paranormal elements and unexpected sexual content.
Was this review helpful?
1/5 Stars

DNF'ed at 63 pages or 20%

"Nora wasn't sure who was suffering more from her parent's divorce. Her mother-- or her."
No, actually it's me being forced to read that after it was revealed to us that her mother was literally in an ab*sive relationship. And I'm supposed to like the character after reading that???

That was not good. I thoroughly did not enjoy that.

The whole thing was incredibly cliche. From the setup to the characters. I mean the football player's name with the blond highlights in his hair and dimples was Rebel..... who are we kidding?

The "scary" parts were just freaking weird. I don't even know how to give you an example of that. I mean we really sat here listening to this monster complain about being a monster. Terrifying, really.

The internal dialogue was awkward and not at all believable for a teenager. I don't need her to be saying "sheesh" or "periodt" but I highly doubt that the average teenager would be using this many adjectives. Sounding like she got a thesaurus for her last birthday

But the author writes for her own enjoyment and I truly do respect that. Just because I didn't like it doesn't mean that you won't or that someone else won't connect with it. At least she's getting her stories out there, it's more than I can say for myself.
Was this review helpful?
I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I was drawn to this by the premise and the great cover. Unfortunately, I think the story could've benefited from another few rounds of editing, as the writing seemed disjointed and amateurish.
Was this review helpful?
2.5 rounded up. 

This was incredibly tedious to get into. It is somehow both overwritten and stilted. Very predictable.

Overall, it had a good premise and potential, but the execution fell flat.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

Nora Gaines has horrific visions and is able to sense paranormal oddities. When she and her mother move into an old farmhouse they soon learn that the farmhouse has a bloody past. Do Nora's visions hold the key to solving the mysterious murders from years ago?

This was a quick read which was structured very nicely, even if it was a bit obvious at times. Nora handles her situation quite well, I just wish we got more of the entities that she encounters. Her encounters with them tend to be few and far between, but the story within the story plotline was pretty good. My biggest gripe about this one is how Nora could go from investigative teenager to horndog in a matter of moments. She has a bit of a romance with one of the boys in town and the few bits of sexual content between the two of them seemed just thrown in at the last second. It didn't really mesh with the story.

If you're looking for a light and quick read with paranormal elements then this one is for you. I recommend for readers 14+ since there is sexual content, though nothing extra graphic. Four stars from me as the positives were great and my personal negatives weren't that massive.
Was this review helpful?
I enjoyed this book. The pacing was excellent and the characters were well developed. I would definitely seek out other works by this author in the future.
Was this review helpful?
After the divorce of her parents, Nora and her mother move to a off-the-beaten-path home. Very shortly after their arrival Nora begins to have disturbing visions of horrific things happening in the home.

This book immediately caught my eye with its beautiful cover. While The Upside-down of Nora Gaines is definitely a unique story, I had a very difficult time getting into it. The writing was strange. It seemed like the author looked up every word they wrote in a thesaurus and replaced it with the biggest one, regardless of if it made sense. I found the reading experience to be very clunky and couldn't seem to get immersed.

I found the various plot lines and characters difficult to follow - I wish more time was spent cultivating a few great characters rather than a ton of vague ones. All in all, I think this was a poor execution of a fun idea. Many thanks to Netgalley for providing me an e-copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
thanks to netgalley and the publisher for providing me with the digital arc of this book in exchange for an honest review.

a unique read for sure! i enjoyed it for the most part but had a couple of issues here and there. the plot was all over the place, there were so many characters and storylines introduced that seemed kind of irrelevant? i couldn't see how they tied in or added to the story or reading experience. i know this is the genre but the annoying teenage drama getting thrown around every couple of chapters was just simply too much and i see i'm not the only one who thinks so. the ending was rushed and we don't get any resolution of what happened? it wasn't satisfying as all. however predictable it was, it was still fun to read.
Was this review helpful?
The Upside Down of Nora Gaines is a YA supernatural/fantasy/romance that was a quick, enjoyable read. Nora and her mother move from Buffalo into an old farmhouse with a haunted past. While Nora meets a love interest in  her new small town, she learns that her house has a long, fantastical past. A magical journal found in her attic weaves the story of Nora's present and the properties haunted past. 
The premise for this book was intriguing and I found it easy to get into every time I picked it up. However, I did have some issues with the story telling and there were parts that seemed like unnecessary inclusions. The ending was somewhat rushed and didn't feel as final as I would've liked. Maybe a bit more editing would've helped tie everything together? Overall, enjoyable read because I did like the originality of the story and think it would be good for anyone who likes fantasy-esque YA.
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my ARC!
Was this review helpful?
trigger warning
trigger warning
<spoiler> mention of rape, grooming, trauma, being orphaned, torture, being transformed, death by fire </spoiler>

After her parent's divorce, Nora Gaines and her mother move to a small village. They immediately sense weird vibes from the old farmhouse that now is supposed to be their home.

The book was very predictable, from the love interest to the actual plot to the ending of the book. I could have lived with that, were it not for the writing - it's badly overwritten, it felt like the author had leafed through a synonym dictionary for nearly every single sentence.
Especially when they chose to insert slang to make it more hip in the same part as all the multi syllable terms it felt off.

There is a story in a story, a diary that plays a huge role in this book, but the writing in the diary read like the normal narrator, only that it felt even more ridiculous to have every single breath taken mentioned. It's certainly not how I write in my diary.

I was very surprised as I finished the novel and got to the list of other works by the same author, because the whole thing does not read like it was written by an experienced author.

No recommendations, won't read anything more by this writer. 
The arc was provided by the publisher.
Was this review helpful?
Nora has visions of horrific things. Things that lurk in the shadows and feast on bones. After moving with her mother into an old farmhouse, Nora discovers a blank journal that fills itself with an ominous warning. A cursed beast is coming for her, and time is running out. When the blood moon rises, so shall the beast.

Local teen, Rebel, has his own trepidations about the house. His parents, both paranormal scientists, were investigating it when they died under mysterious circumstances. His growing feelings for Nora motivate him to battle the ghosts of his past, if it means keeping her safe.

Allies to turn to enemies. Fiction turns to fact. The past and the present collide. All in an epic battle to claim unfathomable power. Can Nora unlock the secrets buried within the farmhouse in time to save herself and those dear to her from a grisly fate?

I went into this completely blind after reading the blurb and this has turned into one of those wee accidental gems of a story that you really enjoy.

Constantine had me hooked from the start, spooky feels and an epic protagonist in feisty Nora Gaines, not to mention the continuous allure of the mysterious Rebel.

I really enjoyed the way Constantine created the parallel worlds between the past and present which kept the pace of the book interesting and drove the plot forward, I literally couldn’t put the book down.

A perfect read for those who like ghost stories with a side order of cringey and passionate teenage love!

#bookreviewsbymrsc #theupsidedownofnoragaines #cathrinaconstantine
Was this review helpful?