Wulfwyn 's Reviews > Gone at Midnight: The Mysterious Death of Elisa Lam

Gone at Midnight by Jake          Anderson
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really liked it
bookshelves: kensington, nonfiction, mystery, goodreads-giveaway-entry, netgalley

I saw the eerie video of Elisa Lam a while back. You may have seen it. A young woman in an elevator acting off. I couldn’t tell if she was being followed by someone or it was something paranormal or possibly she was mentally ill. I didn’t know anything about her other than that was the last video of her from the night she disappeared. Nineteen days later her body was discovered. When I saw this book offered on NetGalley I was super excited and requested it.
I’m super torn on how many stars to give this book. It takes us along on the author’s investigation into what happened to Elisa Lam. I have finished the book and am left with even more questions than I had. It took me longer than I expected to read because the author was a bit everywhere through the story. In retrospect the story is so convoluted because there are no real answers, only theories. I did appreciate the author going through so many of them. I was fascinated with the history of the Cecil Hotel and the theories that involved it, both paranormal and the ones involving staff members.
The author went deep into Elisa Lam’s mental health, which I believe was mainly researched through her writings on her blog. He added into it his own insight on how mental illness may have been a big part in what happened. This insight came from his own experiences with mental illness. While it was, at times, a bit difficult for me to follow, I did find that helpful. Some may find it unnecessary and perhaps a bit self serving. There were a couple of times when I thought he was identifying too much with what she may or may not have been experiencing. While it was interesting and it gives us a look inside the author’s mind, it probably could have been cut down a bit. It, at times, overshadowed the story of Elisa Lam.
I was left with a lot more knowledge of what Elisa was possibly going through and the various theories. It isn’t, in my opinion, a far stretch to believe there was a cover up in her disappearance, death and the way it was handled. My heart goes out to her family who not only lost someone they loved but then are left with the possibility of never knowing exactly what happened to her. I can’t imagine the double edge sword of hearing or reading the theories of what may have occurred and the questions people are asking in an attempt to find some justice for Elisa Lam. It’s a sad story that has no satisfactory conclusion. The author, I think, did his best to put everything out there in an effort to have people talking about Elisa and what happened
I’m grateful to NetGalley, Kensington and the author for making this title available. I did learn a lot, and though I have questions, I am happy I read this book. My review is voluntary and all opinions are mine.
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Reading Progress

January 3, 2020 – Shelved
February 24, 2020 – Started Reading
March 12, 2020 – Finished Reading

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