Regine's Reviews > House of Leaves

House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski
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Dec 20, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: horror, um-no
Read from December 20, 2011 to January 24, 2012

The most appropriate word to summarize my review would be "meh".

Even though I was engrossed with the narrative at times, I felt like I was being fed a crock load of shit. Danielewski's jizz has been strewn all over this book, and I always felt the need to wipe it off.

Not to say that I completely hated the book. There are two main narratives in "House of Leaves" that are very cleverly intertwined. The first narrative comes from an old man named Zampano. Zampano's narrative consists of the old man's commentary on "The Navidson Record"-- a fake documentary about a haunted house. The second narrative is written by Johnny Truant-- a deadbeat tattoo artist who supposedly finds Zampano's narrative and takes it upon himself to edit Zampano's work.There are footnotes, on the footnotes. At times, there's even an unnamed editor that creates footnotes on Johnny's footnotes. Gimmicky, but okay, cool, I can deal.

As Zampano's characters delve deeper into the house, Johnny descends deeper into his madness, and deeper into his obsession with the Navidson Record. Zampano's footnotes are painstakingly well-researched. He refers to everything from classical Greek mythology, to physics, to pop-culture. The unending web of footnotes alone mirrors the labyrinthe that makes up the structure of Zampano's house.

However, when you take each element and look at it separately, you're left with a predictable horror story with the tiresome ramblings of a angst-ridden,drug-addicted, sex fiend. Johnny Truant very often calls himself out on his own bullshit. You're left to wonder how much of the book is real, or whether Zampano's novel and the Navidson Record are just objects of Truant's imagination. The more I read the book, the more convinced I became that Zampano and Johnny Truant were the same person, and that Johnny was creating footnotes on his own work.

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Reading Progress

01/08/2012 page 156
22.0% "Finally getting into it."
01/18/2012 page 500
71.0% "200 pages away from finishing. It's been torture at times."
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message 1: by K.D. (new)

K.D. Absolutely Nice to see you back, Regine. :)


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