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In the Dark of the Night

3.86 of 5 stars 3.86  ·  rating details  ·  3,578 ratings  ·  170 reviews
The rambling lakeside house called Pinecrest has lain empty since its last owner went missing seven years ago. But for the Brewster family it will be this year's holiday retreat, and for the kids Eric and Marci, it's the perfect place to spend a lazy summer exploring. Which is how Eric and his teenage friends discover a curious collection of discarded objects stowed in a h ...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published June 26th 2007 by Ballantine (first published 2006)
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Edward Lorn
John Saul is one of those authors I grew up reading. My mother had a closet full of horror novels, and a great number of them were Saul's books. Though this is not my favorite book of his, it comes damn close.

The Lizzy Borden murders is one of those mysteries I've always been obsessed with. Something about a lady with a hatchet drives me crazy. I keed, I keed. As demented as that sounds, you should also know that I love her history for the same reason I dig Amelia Earhart's. It's the unanswered
Levina  C.
This book is called In the Dark Of the Night, but really what it should be called is The Cursed Axe.

John Saul's The Cursed Axe In the Dark of the Night is a very specific type of thriller. It's what some people call an "a-dime-a-dozen thriller." Why? Because there's so many of them, all similiar, none employing any special or unique technique. John Saul certainly didn't.

In this book, a family head out to a big, obviously haunted summer home. The hormonal teenage boy, Jack or something, discov
This books makes you wonder about what happenes to the weapons of past murderers and if their spirits remain in their weapons when they pass away.... Things that make you go hmmmmmm. This was a good book, but a bit sick. Where did John Saul get his imagination for this book, hmmmmmm. The reason I gave it 3 stars is because the ending could have been better, needed to be more explanatory of the prior events that happened in the book. It left the reader (myself) wanting to know more. Though a good ...more
Bryan Wilson
One of the things that John Saul does so well is make the supernatural seem real by inserting fantastic elements into an utterly believable story and makes it a thrilling ride. In this book, Saul explores teenage angst, summertime romance, class warfare, anxiety, small-town gossip and big-city politics, family dynamics and, oh yeah, the psychology of serial killers and the legacies they leave behind.

In the Dark of the Night is not for the squeamish. The body count ultimately rivals that of Carri
Having read one of John Saul's novels when I was in high school, and thoroughly detesting it, I was hesitant to pick this one up. The synopsis seemed really interesting though & so I thought I'd give it a shot. Maybe my tastes had changed over the years, maybe I was a little too harsh in my judgements of his other book...

In the Dark of the Night was certainly not a bad book by any stretch of the imagination. It held my interest enough for me to want to keep reading and find out how it all tu
IN THE DARK OF THE NIGHT is neither the best nor worst John Saul book I've read, though it's closer to the latter than the former. It just wasn't a story that grabbed me. It strikes me as being pretty representative of the lower quality horror books that populated the best seller lists several years ago. This story is just for fans of that genre, in my opinion.
Dec 14, 2007 Charli rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Any John Saul Fan
I'm a huge John Saul fan, so I pretty much like any book he's written. Of course, I find it strange that he always manages to go after children in his books, but that's beside the point. This was a great read, I found myself sucked into the story on more than one occasion, losing track of everything until one of my pets brought me back to reality. Awesome book and I can't wait to read the next novel of his in my list!
Everytime I read a John Saul novel I ask myself the same question...why? Why do I read him and why is he so damn popular when there are much better writers of horror fiction practicing the art today?

His books are filled with cliches and other tired gimics and it's the same damn formula every single time. Although if you have animosity toward teenagers a John Saul is a good read because you can pretty much be guaranteed that at least one will meet a horrible death half-way through.

Yet despite th
Rochelle Reed
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
In the Dark of the Night. John Saul. 2006. Ballantine Books. 390 pages. ISBN 9780345487025.

Now holding a title shared with many others of mass-market king, John Saul was one of my favorite authors as a pre-teen and throughout my young adult years. I first devoured Suffer the Children (1977) which is still wildly original and read everything written by Saul up through 1994, when I began to notice a tiring and homogeneous plot trend in his novels. I did revisit John Saul in 2006 to read his Blacks
Leah Polcar
2.5. Different take on what initially appeared to be a haunted house story, but still rather silly. Though I have to say, it was sort of entertaining -- perfect sort of beach read (if your taste in beach reads tends more towards horror and less toward chick lit).
I was pretty disappointed in this book and at first I wasn't sure why but now I think I know.
First off, he spent so much time building up the characters and their relationships with others to only drop it off at the speedy ending of the book. High Body Count does not = Scary. There were so many holes in the store and bouncing around that I had a hard time really putting the pieces together. I am still not sure if I have it all worked out. I do not expect stories to be neatly wrapped up for me bu
Whitney Vandiver
I read this hoping for a haunted house suspense novel, but Saul focuses on something hidden outside the house and it's powers on people instead. More to the point, I was disappointed in the writing and conclusion, or lack thereof on both accounts. Saul does not give detail to his characters and left me needing a lot more, saving his elaborate writing for the murder or death scenes and leaving the plot in need of further development. As many animals died unnecessarily as people were murdered, lea ...more
This book is typical of Saul's writing. John knows the way to a twisting turning gut an ax pick of pages turning as his story slowly grips you while your eyes scan and hold the reader captivated throughout its journey pushing the points of pacified horror jubilant traits of filth deception and a glossy filling of who or what is responsible. He brings you to such heights; a mer finish is undignified. HE IS AN ARTIST. Which means "Read them ALL!!!"
This book was, quite frankly, atrocious. Saul pulled out all the stops to make his work as gruesome and disturbing as possible without regard for quality. Loose ends were left strewn about, several conclusions were drawn shakily without much basis, and the characters seemed overly predictable. I'm ashamed to have read past the first chapter of such a gory monstrocity.
This one was hard to rate. This started off feeling like a classic horror story, something vaguely supernatural, and the innocent family who ends up embroiled with it. It was moving along well, with spooky occurrences and unexplained phenomena, the ever popular townie vs summer visitor conflict, and a paranoid character who everyone tells to loosen up and stop inventing worries. It moves along in this suspense/tension vein, till the very end (view spoiler) ...more
Dustin Crazy little brown owl
March 2011 Group Read in the John Saul Lit Group. I read this when it was first released in 2006, but I actually enjoyed In the Dark of the Night better the second time around.
I enjoyed reading this book and until this day during fourth of July fireworks, i still look over my shoulder.
Such a disappointment. Probably the book that proves I've outgrown this author.
this book was ok. it could've been shorter.
3.5 out of 5. I loved the concept of the book, but it lost some points to execution. It is interesting throughout, a tad predictable at the end- but nothing egregious. The epilogue was sort of mysterious, and I have mixed feelings about it. On the one hand I would like to know who gathered the items again, why the wall was bricked up again (is there a sequel I'm missing?), I find those new questions frustrating. On the other hand I like the idea that those items are still out there. Pretty inter ...more
Stephen Hayes
I was looking for a no-brain-strain novel to read before going to sleep, read the blurb on a few, and picked this one, and brought it home a couple of days ago.

It's a ghost story, sort of.

Three American high school boys are staying with their families in adjacent lakeside cottages for the summer. One family has rented an old house that has been unoccupied since the previous owner disaappeared a few years previously, in mysterious circumstances, but the reader already knows that he drowned in t
Michael Kemp
Mrs. Merrill Brewster finally overcomes her paranoia and lets her husband, Dan, rent a lake house where she and her family can spend the summer. They took the only remaining house available, which is a massive Victorian mansion. It seems kind of creepy in the pictures and when they first pull up the driveway, but as their time passes, aside from an instance in which the little daughter, Marci, sees a scary man in a boat with a cross, they enjoy their time at Pinecrest.

Eric, the son, finds things
"In the Dark of the Night" has a great premise for a thriller/horror novel. Can the evil that possesses serial killers live on in their "tools of the trade"? And if so, what if the wrong person - - or any person- - gets their hands on them?
Saul in the past has proven that he can scribe some seriously creepy books, but this one just fails to deliver. The problems? The only noteworthy adults in the book are either psychotically disturbed, bland and underdeveloped or worrying to the point of neuro
Kim Smiley
Eric Brewster and his family have FINALLY rented a house on the lake for the summer. For years, Eric's 2 best friends and their families spent their summer on Phantom Lake and now his family was going to. Eric's mother however, wasn't so happy about this idea. She is the kind of woman who is scared of everything, and the thought of being alone in this huge house on the lake while her husband spent Mon-Fri at home due to work was frightening to her. Even though she's friends with the families her ...more
The Dark Of The Night.....The novel has a good consistancy of thrills and chills throughout which I liked. It did kind of lose the edge a little in the middle (4 stars at this point) it was the last 50 pages that gave it a 3 star rating. I did enjoy the novel and will probably read another book by John Saul. I was very dissapointed about the way that he ruined the build up of the storyline with the spooky and insane Mr Logan, he was interesting until his dog died and then he just went and slaugh ...more
I have never read John Saul before. Maybe some of his books are good. This one was unfortunate. The story was a good one but it was poorly delivered.

Character development: One person, the mother, in this story was so exhaustively detailed that I was sure that her peculiar traits must play an important role in the story or resolution. I was wrong! The author so overplayed the mother's personality trait that it became almost child like. The other characters in the story were not studied at nearly
Kathy Jackson
I realize I have read and reviewed this book before but just finished it again. The story is quite a great premise – someone collects the killing instrument from brutal serial killers only to find they have powers to take over one who is not quite as sane as he should be. People start to die in ways that reflect the original killers – i.e. Jack the Ripper slitting throats with his scalpel and Lizzie Borden with the ax.

To stop the powers, each item is kept separate – ie, the ax handle separate fr
Debra Daniels-zeller
This book falls between mystery and thriller and if it didn't have so much of the parents, it could also be young adult. A well crafted old fashioned scary story, with possible creepy ghosts and an odd ball local character, with school bullies tossed into the mix. The main character Eric, a teenager, whose family rents a summer hme, with his friends stumble on hidden mysterious in a shed near a house that has not been rented. This story blended surreal ghost story like elements into a thriller, ...more
This is a decent horror novel. It takes awhile to get to the good stuff, but the last half of the book was pretty good. John Saul's books are pretty formulaic, but sometime, that is what I want to read. I will always remember how scary his books were when I first started reading them as a teen.

This book once again features teens in trouble. The cursed objects could have been more interesting, but it was still a pretty good concept.
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John Saul was born in Pasadena, California on February 25, 1942, and grew up in Whittier where he graduated from Whittier High School in 1959. He attended several colleges—Antioch, in Ohio, Cerritos, in Norwalk, California, Montana State University and San Francisco State College, variously majoring in anthropology, liberal arts, and theater, but never obtaining a degree.
After leaving college, he
More about John Saul...
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