megs_bookrack's Reviews > The Ritual

The Ritual by Adam Nevill
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really liked it

Luke, Dom, Phil and Hutch have been friends since college. Over the years, however, they have drifted apart a bit; particularly from Luke, who is the only one of the group still single and without a stable career.

The men decide to travel from their homes in the UK, to the Scandinavian wilderness of the Arctic Circle for a backpacking adventure; a reunion of sorts.

Unfortunately, the camaraderie of the group isn't as strong as you would hope. In fact, it's slightly hostile. Dom and Phil are condescending to Luke, treating him like a child, or worse.

Hutch is the happy one. The bond that seems to tie them all together. His positive energy is half the reason they decided to take this trip in the first place.

Adding additional stress for the group is the fact that Dom and Phil are ill-prepared for this type of holiday. As in, they're out of shape AF.

The group is not making the mileage they need to be making per day to reach their goals. Because of this, Hutch suggests they take an off piste short cut.

As a frequent hiker of the rugged mountains of Maine, this is a nightmare scenario for me.

Just the thought...

The men agree to Hutch's plan, although they are definitely nervous and skeptical; particularly Luke.

The forest is so dark and thick, the rain not giving them a moment's break. They are exhausted, they are physically no match for the rough terrain. They see things. Everything starts to go really badly.

Forced to take shelter for a night in what clearly is a haunted cabin, the men are finally pushed to their breaking points by what lay inside.

Y'all, these hiking scenes legit chilled me to the bone. I loved Nevill's descriptions of being in the wilderness. How it swallows you, completely cutting you off from the modern world and returning your senses to their more primal nature.

I thought he captured that fear being in the deep woods can evoke in us so freaking well. I absolutely loved the first half of this.

The second half does take a twist that shifts the feeling more from fear to anger, as the narrative directs focus from the devil we don't know, to the devil we do.

I had jaw dropping, stomach-turning moments right up to the very end. The final scene was so intense. Overall, I think this is an extremely well done survival Horror story; especially depending on what your fears are.

My only negative would be that I felt certain sections dragged on a bit. Particularly some of the interactions between the men, although I do understand the author's choice with those moments.

I definitely will be thinking of this one for a long time to come, especially on my next hiking trip!

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Reading Progress

July 25, 2018 – Shelved
July 25, 2018 – Shelved as: to-read
October 27, 2020 – Started Reading
October 28, 2020 –
page 35
October 29, 2020 –
page 100
23.15% "This is so stressful 😫"
October 30, 2020 –
page 149
34.49% "Well, I will not be sleeping tonight.
October 31, 2020 –
page 160
37.04% "I got so scared reading this last night, home alone during a storm, that I had to put it down and pick up something lighter ((a murder mystery)) so that I could actually be able to sleep!"
October 31, 2020 –
page 243
56.25% "This is so intense. It just doesn't let up!"
November 1, 2020 –
page 271
62.73% "This certainly has taken a turn that I never would have guessed 🤷‍♀️"
November 4, 2020 –
page 300
November 5, 2020 –
page 312
November 6, 2020 –
page 327
November 10, 2020 –
page 388
89.81% "YES, Luke!
Keep going. Don't give up!!!"
November 10, 2020 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-2 of 2 (2 new)

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message 1: by Grace (new)

Grace Sounds like you enjoyed this one, especially the hiking. Great review Meg.

megs_bookrack Grace wrote: "Sounds like you enjoyed this one, especially the hiking. Great review Meg." Thank you so much, Grace. There were honestly moments where I was terrified! So fun!! xx

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