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Friday, 26 October 2018

Book Review: The Cabin at the End of the World by Paul Tremblay

Eric and Andrew are staying in a remote cabin on a New Hampshire lake with their seven-year-old child, Wen, who is catching grasshoppers in the garden when a large man appears. He is friendly at first and is starting to win Wen over when he abruptly says, "None of what is going to happen is your fault." Three more strangers then appear in the driveway holding deadly weapons...


"Too many people have smiles that don't mean what a smile is supposed to mean."

This has probably been my most disappointing read of the year - my rage is fuelled further by the fact that I wasted a precious October read on it! Writing a review like this is more difficult when the author is quite active on bookstagram etc, especially when they are a pretty cool guy, as Tremblay is, but I do believe it's of the utmost importance to always be honest in your reviews. This book was majorly hyped on bookstagram but unfortunately it really fell flat for me.

The first 50 pages or so were incredibly promising - I was HOOKED and needed to know what happened next. But then nothing really did... for the next 250 pages. I mean, sure, perhaps events did occur but I felt like the story itself didn't really move forward. It was basically 250 pages of a group of characters arguing with each other and no one really taking a minute to calm down and ask the intruders to explain everything from the very beginning to the present moment. OR if they did ask (I honestly can't remember, it's all a blur), the intruders couldn't answer such questions "yet". Can you imagine how infuriating that was. And then the ending itself... *explodes* I really hated it. It just emphasised that this book felt like a waste of time to me.

On the plus side, it was refreshing that the main family unit was made up of two dads and their adopted child, Wen. Maybe it's just the books I've been reading recently, but I don't often come across gay couples with children in my fiction and I really did appreciate that! Representation is important. It's just a shame I didn't give a flying toot about the actual characters... There was a huge scene that I know was meant to be really emotional and I didn't even bat an eyelid. And I'm a crier!! Oh, and some of the violence scents were pretty brutal... which was good. But that's all I got!

The idea and concept is really quite interesting, but I feel like it just fell apart after the first 50 pages. Maybe this would have worked better as a novella or short story. Who knows. Just not for me, unfortunately! 2 stars.

Johann
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