Gloria's Reviews > Let the Right One In

Let the Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist
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Sep 07, 09

bookshelves: fiction
Read in September, 2009

I finished this book while watching Anime music videos at a convention I had been participating in over Labor Day weekend. Near the end of the book, I thought about what I might right here and nothing really seemed to sound right.

Vampires are usually horror or romance territory. Occasionally, they are associated with suspenseful thriller or supernatural action movies. With the likes of Twilight (side note: That's Enough, Stephanie Meyer), the Sookie Stackhouse series, the original Dracula and many new teen-targeted books thanks to 2009 being the year of the Vampire appearent - I could not align this book with anything else in the genre.

Eli is a vampire. She will never really admit to it, though the signs are there - aversion to sunlight, needing blood to live, being more or less immortal and undead. Oskar, the other main character, shows the basic beginnings of anti-social personality disorder (and as an adult, on the path he begins on would probably become a sociopath and possible serial killer). He keeps a ball of tissue in his pants to pee in, imagines a tree to be a bully whom he stabs and have trouble empathizing with almost everyone. In 1980s Sweden, this love story is not as much about their relationship as a small amount of time captured like an undisturbed snow bank.

This book is not for kids. This book does not have sparkles, does not have eternal romantic love and will not leave you daydreaming about how sexy vampires are. Themes of pedophilia, violence, drugs and mutilation play major roles in the story.

In a genre that is very easily played out, predictable and sometimes laughably ridiculous - "Let the Right One In" stands apart. It's is memorizing and hard to put down. While some books bring about passionate feelings, this book is unique in it's ability to be a work of art and a wonderful contribution to the world of literature.

I highly recommend the Swedish film as well.
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