Last time on the Summoning, this doesn’t actually make sense.
Chloe’s aunt sent her to the group home because the school ordered her to be sent to one. She can’t have been lying about that because her dad would have quickly found out that the school said no such thing. And her dad can’t also be in on it because her dad and aunt don’t get along, if he was fine with Chloe being taken by her aunt for experimenting he’d have been more than fine with her aunt raising her.
Her aunt originally wanted to talk to her after school, so she presumably wasn’t expecting a breakdown midway through the day. And if she was, she should have yanked Chloe out immediately because there was no way of knowing the school would say “a group home, but you can pick” and not “lol we don’t care, she’s expelled!” or “we’re picking the institution” or anything else.
Then there’s that Chloe’s aunt is the main adult in her life, and if she’d been taken aside and told she had powers instead of lied to and left to get the explanation from malcontents and dead people, she’d have probably been completely fine going with her aunt and helping with whatever they’re doing. In fact, even regular kids they just found would. These are teenagers being told they’re super special and have magic, they will do whatever the fuck you want to believe that. The only reason you’d need to pretend they’re crazy is as a way of holding kids like Simon without tipping them off that they’re being held. Even someone like Liz, who they don’t seem to have wanted anything from, would probably have been more controllable if you just told her she was possessed by a demon – the major problem there seems to be that they were lying to her in a really obvious way, because she knew she hadn’t touched whatever just got smashed or thrown. There’s no reason to lie to the kids except to piss them off in the long run.
The only way the group home works is if they’re collecting a lot of kids and they don’t want any of them spilling the beans to their parents, but only two of the six kids there had any parents to worry about (and that’s assuming Rae’s mom wasn’t also in on this whole thing). As long as no one else is corroborating their story, any individual kid claiming the people in charge say they have magic powers can be brushed off as insanity.
The place is too small and doesn’t have any real mechanism for collecting the supernatural kids that we’ve seen – most of them are coming from people already part of it. And it’s not clear what the hell the point was beyond a temporary holding area, except that a number of them were kept there for some time and there doesn’t seem to have been any sign of a further plan.
Then there’s killing Derek. They tolerate a hated werewolf for months, but now that the jig is up and they don’t need to make any pretense about keeping him with the others, they’re going to shoot him? The only way it makes sense is that they were only keeping him around to keep Simon around, which isn’t the explanation we get, and doesn’t fit with the fact they seem to have kept around Liz for a while despite her power set having issues as well – that suggests they want to have Derek under control if possible.
The reveal is exciting in plot terms, but the moment you compare it to what’s happened before now, it doesn’t actually fit.
I think this is one of the issues of prioritizing plot way over character. I mentioned that the dialogue for this book is really weird at points and doesn’t read like an actual conversation. It’s people saying the right things for the plot to move on, even if that doesn’t follow as a response to what the other person said. The same can be said for the plotting at large. Her aunt knows about the ghosts, therefore she says she wants to talk to Chloe and she gets her into the fake group home, but the school just happens to give the perfect setup, even though the school has no connection to this plot.
Which reminds me – what the fuck was up with the necklace? The most reason guess is that it was suppressing her power until she matured enough to overcome it, but her aunt seemed to think it was really important she keep wearing it. And it can’t just be that her aunt didn’t realize it’d stopped working, because the reason she was delivering the necklace is that it was on Chloe when she was brought into the hospital after having a breakdown at school over seeing a ghost. And she obviously didn’t slap a tracking device inside before delivering it because otherwise they’d have used that to track Chloe when she escaped.
And, of course, then there’s the non-end that amounts to the author transparently splitting the book to make more money. This is not something that should be a surprise after wading through thirty chapters of just as obvious filler to make more money, though.
The book’s conclusion is an except from the next book. Chloe is trying to yank Liz into existence again, and apparently she summons something else instead. Something that can blow air even though every last ghost we’ve seen so far has been completely incapable of messing with the real world.
The ghost informs her that she accidentally an entire graveyard this time trying to summon one ghost. That is one hell of a sueishness upgrade. I want to hope she then uses her two thousand zombies to bust out but probably the plot ends up being her trying to get to them so she can put them back. The ghost also references the idea Lyle is currently getting tortured in hell as well, this time with the claim the guy must be thrilled to see this even though the ghost apparently can’t see him and is just assuming. You’re a goddamn ghost, the functioning of the afterlife should not be that much of a mystery.
Dearly departed, scarcely lamented, deeply demented Dr. Samuel Lyle,” the voice sang, sailing past me on a current of warm air. “Creator of the prettiest, sweetest abomination I have ever seen.”
“A bit of this, a bit of that,” she sang. “A twist here, a tweak there. And look what we have. One perfect ball of energy, waiting to explode.” The voice came closer, breeze ruffling my hair. “Are there more of you, child? There must be. Little magic makers and monsters, bursting with energy. Have your creators realized their mistake yet
And our revelation is what I already guessed, what, halfway through when the first ghost started going on about Chloe’s power being unnatural?
The scene seems to promise excitement, but it also references Chloe’s “unbandaged forearm”, presumably in contrast to the one that is, meaning this is taking place shortly after where we left off. So it’s probably like this book, with an interesting opening followed by ffffffffiiiiiiiilllllllllllllllleeeeeeeerrrrrrrr and then a sudden burst of plot so there’s something to interrupt when the book ends again.