Raven's Gate: Book One of The Gatekeepers -- Anthony Horowitz
Yes, I'm a huge slacker. I'm way behind on my Horowitz -- I've only read the first couple of Alex Rider books, and I hadn't even started this series.
Due to being involved with a robbery that resulted in a security guard getting stabbed, Matt Freeman is offered a choice:
1. To go to a juvenile detention center for three years or
2. To go to a small, remote town and work on a farm for a year.
Obviously, Matt makes the same choice as Stanley Yelnats. He chooses the unknown, thinking anything would be preferable to prison.
He was wrong.
The first night he's at Deverill Farm, he has terrifying Rosemary's-Baby-type dreams in which women chant, he smells sulfur and is forced to drink blood.
Everyone in Lesser Malling -- Mrs. Deverill, her cat, the local handyman, the pharmacist, even the local children -- seem dangerous and well, evil. He finds papers in Mrs. Deverill's house that suggest he was deliberately led to Lesser Malling for some sinister reason.
The first time he tries to run away, he finds himself trapped in a loop -- every road he takes brings him back to his starting point.
Every time someone tries to help him, they end up dead.
It's awesome. Raven's Gate has the same non-stop action of the Alex Rider books, but with a creepy horror twist. An obvious pick for all fans of Alex Rider, but tell fans of Diane Duane, Herbie Brennan, Darren Shan and Artemis Fowl to give it a try as well.