I promise you that when I chose to read this book, I did not realize AT ALL that this was the same author of The Bone Clocks (which I have made a previous blog post about). I honestly did not make the connection until I was about a third of the way into the book and noticed some similarities in terminology and writing style. Unlike with Bone Clocks, I finished this book in one sitting (roughly 3 hours) as I found it to be quite short (in comparison to The Bone Clocks, of course). So here is my review:
On an ordinary road, the likes of which you can see in any town, where there are bus routes and red brick-houses, something unusual is afoot. If you look carefully, you may be lucky enough to spot a dark alley, one that is easy to miss even if you go with the sole purpose of finding it. Along this alley is a small black metal door set into the wall with no handles or keyholes; but just one touch will cause it to open up into a beautiful sunlit garden that slopes up to a house. A house that really shouldn’t exist. But beware – if you go through, you may not be able to get out. 5 “guests” find themselves making this journey into Slade House; the guests make their separate ways to this place nine years apart from each other, beginning in 1979. And although all who find their way are welcomed by the house’s residents, what goes on behind the closed doors is a completely different story.
If I’m honest, I actually enjoyed this novel a LOT more than The Bone Clocks. Although I read it assuming it was a standalone, it really is a prequel to The Bone Clocks (hence the reason I’m mentioning this novel so much). However, it functions quite well in its role as a standalone and I don’t see any problem in reading this novel AFTER reading The Bone Clocks. The story was eerie and I loved the different story lines that all intersected and built upon each other (the author is quite well-known for this style of writing). I got goosebumps as I kept reading and was on the edge of my seat until the grand finale. Chilling and wonderful, it has been a while since I’ve read a good horror story so this was a pleasant surprise. If you have read any of Mitchell’s works then I definitely recommend this one. If you have never read anything by this novel, then DO read this one! It is a short scary read with amazing elements that make the story unique. It WILL stay in your head and give you a fright here and there!