Linda Martin's Reviews > The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle

The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton
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This book is frenetic, unpredictable, and deep. The author wanted to write like Agatha Christie, but it morphed into a Christie-meets-videogaming kind of scenario, trapping characters into a game forcing them to solve a murder. If they can't solve the murder they will be trapped in the game forever, so what does hell look like? Maybe this is it?

As the author wrote:
If this isn’t hell, the devil is surely taking notes.

It starts with a nameless man waking up in the forest where immediately he sees a man chasing a woman, then hears a gunshot. Soon he realizes he's lost in the forest and can't find his way out. The action starts there and doesn't let up for 448 pages! You're dragged through several characters before you can start to piece together what's happening. Once you start piecing it together, you'll continue for the rest of the novel, trying to solve the mystery as the characters do the same. You might want to get some paper and write your own timeline.

Although the book was a murder mystery it had excellent descriptions in it, reflecting the mood of the story.

The forest is oppressive, bludgeoning every utterance down to a whisper after an hour, and crushing all conversation twenty minutes after that. Even the dogs have gone quiet, sniffing at the ground as they tug us deeper into the murk.

Another example:
The world’s shriveling beyond the windows, darkening at the edges and blackening at the center.

The book also gets briefly philosophical at times:
...every man is in a cage of his own making...

A man could go mad. Most men would, unless they had faith.

I wouldn't have chosen this book on my own. I read it along with the Ultimate PopSuger Reading Challenge group here at Goodreads. I'm glad the group chose this book. The reason I like the PopSugar Reading Challenge is that it leads me to try books I wouldn't ordinarily read. This was a great reading experience and I recommend it to everyone, especially if you like mystery, suspense, and/or videogames!
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Reading Progress

December 31, 2018 – Shelved
January 1, 2019 – Started Reading
January 4, 2019 – Finished Reading
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: 2019
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: crime
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: families
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: fiction
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: gaaaaaah
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: horror
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: mysteries
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: magical-realism
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: suspense
January 29, 2019 – Shelved as: popsugar-reading-challenge-2019

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