Trudi's Reviews > The Ritual

The Ritual by Adam Nevill
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's review
Jun 06, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: group-in-peril, survive-this, man-vs-nature, 2012, epic-creep, horror, rusa-reads, scary-as-hell

Wow. This one came soooo very close to getting five stars from me. I am a horror buff and I LOVE to be scared ...really, truly freaked out. Not grossed out (I'll take a bit of that in good fun) but creeped out. My ideal physiological response to horror is when I get the heebie-jeebies (pardon my use of technical terms here) -- you know, the tingling spine, sweaty palms, paranoia, pounding pulse. I'm addicted to dread, and if you can make me want to sleep with the light on I will love you forever and ever.

I’ve pretty much seen it all when it comes to the genre; sometimes suffering from “been there done that” fatigue. It takes a lot to freak me out these days, but that’s not to say it’s impossible. Because it isn’t. I can suspend disbelief with the best of them. In fact, I want to. I won’t fight you. Give me something to work with and I’m your gal. I don’t want to say I’m easy, but pretty close ;-)

I didn't have any expectations when I picked up this book. In fact, I can't even remember where or how I heard about it. The premise caught my eye though, because I'm a sucker for "group in peril" scenarios and getting lost in the woods. I've been lost in the woods ... there's nothing scarier in my books. It doesn't take long to start feeling hunted. I mean, there could be anything out there. Anything.

The first 200 pages of this book are some of the creepiest I've read in a loooong time. There's this irresistible slow build that sucks you in to the primeval environment. As the situation worsens and becomes more threatening, Neville's tight descriptive prose has put you into the story so completely that the threat feels unbearably close. Read this camping or tucked away in a cabin somewhere remote and I guarantee you your blood will chill. I read it with all the lights on in the middle of a city and I still didn't want to look out my back window into the darkness. The thought of going camping again this summer is giving me serious heebie-jeebies.

The book shifts gears in Part II (240 pages in) and for awhile, I thought something was lost in the momentum and intensity. It starts to feel like a different novel altogether, about something else entirely. That feeling lasted for about 100 pages. Fortunately, the last 60 pages are an outstanding turnabout, an adrenaline rush that, while lacking in the epic creep from the first half of the novel, nevertheless delivers the goods on sheer terror.
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Reading Progress

June 6, 2011 – Shelved
March 19, 2012 – Started Reading
March 19, 2012 –
page 100
23.15% "Holy moses batman! This is freakin' SCARY! I am creeped out and do not want to stop reading!!! It's like Blair Witch meets Deliverance meets The Wicker Man!!!"
March 20, 2012 –
page 250
57.87% "I am never going into the woods...ever...again."
March 23, 2012 – Finished Reading

Comments (showing 1-24 of 24) (24 new)

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Megan I love the woods, but for some reason I want to read this even more now!

Trudi Megan, the first 200 pages are some of the SCARIEST I've ever read. Simply fantastic. It's worth picking up just for that. Part II is almost a different book altogether, good but not as .... intense ....

message 3: by Sue (new)

Sue Smith Lordy Trudi ..... coming from you, this has got to be REALLY intense! Don't think I'll read this one for a while. Certainly not when we're camping anyways!

Trudi LOL! No way :)

message 5: by Stephen (new) - added it

Stephen Wow...this looks like one I need to check out. Great review, Trudi.

Trudi Thanks Stephen! This really is a nice, creepy thrill ride. Those first 200 pages are Ka-POW! :)

Megan Looks like I'm in for a super 200-page freak out tonight then, thank goodness for pay day :)

Trudi LOL! May the joy of epic creeps find you! :)

Andrew I love this book its got a real Blair Witch feel to it at the start

Trudi Andrew wrote: "I love this book its got a real Blair Witch feel to it at the start"

Agreed! The first half is some of the best suspense/ horror fiction I've read in ages. Extremely well done.

message 11: by E. (new) - rated it 4 stars

E. Reyes I agree 100%

Shouri Trudy, can you suggest other good horror novels you've come across so far?

Natasa Wow what a great review. It seems we like the same kind of stuff so this is a book for me, it's already on my TBR pile :)))

message 14: by Michelle (new) - added it

Michelle Planning on getting a copy of this as soon as I can. Your review has made me eager to get reading.

Trudi Natasa wrote: "Wow what a great review. It seems we like the same kind of stuff so this is a book for me, it's already on my TBR pile :)))"

Thanks! It's definitely worth checking out.

Trudi Michelle wrote: "Planning on getting a copy of this as soon as I can. Your review has made me eager to get reading."

I'm glad. This book deserves all the attention it gets.

message 17: by Lael (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lael Youngblood You're description of this book is, word for word, exactly how I feel about it. I just finished it moments ago, after devouring it in one day, and I completely agree with your assessment of how it is inadvertantly divided into two different novels starting at around page 240. If Blood Frenzy had remained masked and silent, or left out altogether, the sheer terror in this book would have been in relentless and nearly unbearable. Which I would have preferred. Alas, it gets only 4 stars from me, but is still a master class in epic lost-in-the-woods freak out.

message 18: by Ann (new)

Ann Salman If you haven't read this book then you haven't read horror!
WOW! What a scared-out-of-your-wits story!
I loved it! I think Adam Nevill is wonderful for making me feel terrified!

Vicki getting ready to read based on your review. looks like you have good taste in scariest. have any others to recommend? try pen pal if you haven't. it's one you go back and reread.

Jubayda Cassiem Which horror that you've read would u give a 5star?

Jubayda Cassiem Which horror that you've read would u give a 5star?

message 22: by Luvtoread (new) - added it

Luvtoread Thank you!!!! I am reading this book next, only because of your great review, I am on a creepy,scary horror kick and did not know what to read now. So I hope I feel the way you do as I am reading. Thank you again for your review!

Phillip J. O'Brien Fantastic review. I've started it this morning!

message 24: by Luvtoread (new) - added it

Luvtoread Great review, now maybe my next read!

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