Sami's Reviews > Death Watch

Death Watch by Ari Berk
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's review
Dec 14, 2011

really liked it
Read from January 26 to 30, 2012

Reminiscent of classic Poe-esque gothic horror, yet not beyond the scope of imagining this as a Stephen King brain-child; this book is one of the more weird and interesting reads that's fallen out of my bookshelf.
I was first thrown a little by the pace of this book. As promised, it is very slow going. Many times I was caught confused, not understanding a point; I felt I was being kept from pertinent information. Assuming things would unfold, I hung in and once I was familiar the pace quickened considerably. I can't say everything was explained to justify my earlier bewilderment, but I think I can live with that. This book appears to purposefully confuse a little. Litchport is a place of superstition and old customs. The story is foggy in some senses, like a weird dream you've just woke up from and are trying to remember the details of before they're gone. The spoken dialogue is very assuredly not modern, reminding me of the old south, perhaps even the islands around Maine, and is sometimes quite nearly so unrelatable that indeed it does seem very dream-like. Then again, isn't any good ghost story? There are a lot of things happening in this book that depend on the reader to just accept that yes, this is what's happening, just go with it, it'll make sense in time.
But I think that's what make this so interesting and different. It doesn't compare against anything I've seen written in the last 20 years in a way that I could pit one book against another as an example. It holds itself in its own little niche.
All that said, this book is not going to appeal to everyone. It has a bit of a target market in the lover of ghost stories, folklore, mythology, and dusty old books. This is not a fast read, nor an action filled teen drama. This is a bit of a jump in a time machine to a time when the mind was a little less skeptical and a little more open to the things that lurk in the night.
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01/26/2012 page 12
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