I was disappointed by this book. I wanted to like it, and expected it to be strange from the start, but it was so dismally boring, I found myself hatiI was disappointed by this book. I wanted to like it, and expected it to be strange from the start, but it was so dismally boring, I found myself hating this compulsion I have where I have to read books all the way through, even if I hate them. (Because what if something changes my mind?) I didn't HATE this book, just mildly, okay kind of strongly disliked it.
I saw the ending coming about a quarter through the book. There were a few parts that did suspense fairly well but for the most part I wished I was just reading The Tale-Tell Heart instead. And the 80 million pages about how humans can be part bicycle and bicycles could be part human were a bit overkill.
I might have gone on a tirade on Twitter about this book. I'll just copy and paste.
You ever read a book that never gets better or worse but just a maI might have gone on a tirade on Twitter about this book. I'll just copy and paste.
You ever read a book that never gets better or worse but just a maintains the same level of awful? Yep. http://t.co/Ghd1vX0GeW
It's been a while since I've felt so violated by how terrible a book was. Like, I can't tell if it was SUPPOSED a to be scary or funny.
Spoiler alert: it was neither. And the Ikea knock-off furniture having Norwegian names and/or puns made me wonder if a child wrote it.
It was bad, you guys. So bad. Don't even bother. #horrorstör
Okay, I'm done.
Correction: in my book-rage I accidentally a word in a tweet. The Norwegian names were dirty words. Hence. A child. http://t.co/jvOHTCZTJR
I'm just sad I wasted $15, okay? :(
Additional thoughts: the premise sounded fun. I've seen the premise used before, effectively. But the situations that the characters found themselves in were just... silly. They kept getting captured by the "ghosts" but it was ridiculously easy to escape. I'm pretty sure the main chick escaped 3 times. Things were pretty telegraphed. The end was really dumb and obvious. There was ONE tense scene where shit started to go down (though didn't really ever), but that's it. Lame lame lame. Disappointed....more
I don't know what I was expecting. Is this a case of ruining the book by seeing the movie first? Maybe. I really liked the movie. I don't know. I loveI don't know what I was expecting. Is this a case of ruining the book by seeing the movie first? Maybe. I really liked the movie. I don't know. I loved all of the chapters from Oskar's POV. I love how precocious he is, and how hurt he is, and how much guilt he carries around with him for such a small boy.
I hated almost every single chapter from the grandparents' POV. Specifically the grandfather's. What a weirdo. I don't know if I was supposed to, but I felt close to zero sympathy for him. The grandmother I liked only in relation to Oskar. The whole thing about nothing spaces and putting up with the grandfather's crap kind of made me mad. The chapter where I finally started liking her didn't come until about halfway through the book, where she writes to Oskar about That Morning.
I did tear up a few times during the book, because of course I did. And it was always only during Oskar's chapters. Oskar is a great character. I just couldn't muster feelings for anyone else (except some of the Blacks). Meh.
This one was a little bleak. I mean, four people meet when they happen to go to the top of the same building on New Year's Eve with the intent of throThis one was a little bleak. I mean, four people meet when they happen to go to the top of the same building on New Year's Eve with the intent of throwing themselves off. The fact of them all being there keeps any of them from doing it, and they form a bond, a gang with a pact: If they're not dead by Valentine's Day, they'll come back up there to kill themselves. They become deeply involved in each other's lives whether they want to or not.
The characters are sad, but real. And I absolutely loved Hornby's writing style. It's the first Hornby book that I've read, though I've seen a few movies based on his books. It was great. There were several laugh-out-loud moments, which is always interesting with such a heavy subject matter. I also really enjoyed the jumping between each of the four characters' POVs. A+, would recommend.
The only reason I gave it 4 stars instead of 5 was the ending felt a bit abrupt. I listened to the audiobook, and had to listen to the end a couple of times before I grasped what happened. It just wasn't... what I expected I guess. The rest of it was great though. I may have to go back and read it again....more