A House At The Bottom of The Lake #BookReview

Josh Malerman | pub: Oct. 2016 | 118pp

I picked this read up from the Library. A nice reminder that public libraries are a great resource for free reads..or listens. Whatever works for you! I have open library cards to several locale’s: Fulton County’s (GA) library system is TheBest for diverse reads and Alexandria City (VA) ‘skip the line’ program makes them the best for availability.

This was a short quick audiobook listen, while gardening one day. It’s probably not a book I would have normally purchased because the authors not on my radar. But again, free from the library, is a great zero risk way to try new authors and genres.

Well, technically, the author isn’t as far off my radar as I initially thought. After reading the book, I did some research to find his backlist and discovered most of us know some of his previous work. He wrote Bird Box back in 2014, which became Netflix’s still reigning, most popular movie ever, in 2018. You remember, Sandra Bullock, running in the woods with two kids while blindfolded? Running from some shit we never saw? Yea, that one. He wrote that. Cheers. This all makes sense now.

A House gives that same kind of creepy, ‘this is interesting, but where is it headed vibe’. At the heart of the story is a budding romance between main characters Amelia and James. They are teenagers, crushing on each other, and we meet them as they are going on their first date. Both kids are nervous and James really wants to have a memorable date, on a budget. They wind up boating out to a remote section of lake and going for a swim. Diving into the depths, they find an empty house, fully furnished, left vacant. OF COURSE they must go into the house…no wonder how dark, cold or creepy the place seems, and the writer makes it feel pretty creepy!

Pros: This is a great psychological thriller in that the writer does a great job of building up the chemistry between the two kids as well as the creepiness and fear they experience in the house. The house calls to both of them but it seems to me that Amelia is more connected and explores deeper into the house.

Cons: This definitely gives more of a psychological creepy vibe that plays on your emotions rather than a more direct literal horror story. I think a little more of the later would have given the story more bite. Because its not there, it starts to drag a bit which is tough in a story this short.

Overall, a ⭐️⭐️⭐️ experience. The romance between the couple and the house kept me ‘turning the pages’. But once it was over, I was left wanting more. Id still seek out his other books and hope he has continued success on Netflix. Goodbook!


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