I am delighted to welcome you to read my thoughts on Bird Box by Josh Malerman. I had seen so many reviews about this book I had to read it.
Let me show you what Bird Box is all about…
Now a Netflix filmstarring Sandra Bullock, Sarah Paulson, Rosa Salazar and John Malkovich!
Written with the narrative tension of The Road and the exquisite terror of classic Stephen King, Bird Box is a propulsive, edge-of-your-seat horror thriller, set in an apocalyptic near-future world—a masterpiece of suspense from the brilliantly imaginative Josh Malerman.
Something is out there . . .
Something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse and a person is driven to deadly violence. No one knows what it is or where it came from.
Five years after it began, a handful of scattered survivors remain, including Malorie and her two young children. Living in an abandoned house near the river, she has dreamed of fleeing to a place where they might be safe. Now, that the boy and girl are four, it is time to go. But the journey ahead will be terrifying: twenty miles downriver in a rowboat—blindfolded—with nothing to rely on but her wits and the children’s trained ears. One wrong choice and they will die. And something is following them. But is it man, animal, or monster?
Engulfed in darkness, surrounded by sounds both familiar and frightening, Malorie embarks on a harrowing odyssey—a trip that takes her into an unseen world and back into the past, to the companions who once saved her. Under the guidance of the stalwart Tom, a motely group of strangers banded together against the unseen terror, creating order from the chaos. But when supplies ran low, they were forced to venture outside—and confront the ultimate question: in a world gone mad, who can really be trusted?
Interweaving past and present, Josh Malerman’s breathtaking debut is a horrific and gripping snapshot of a world unraveled that will have you racing to the final page.
Right from the off I am going to say that I have not watched the film. I wanted to read the book first. Now I have read the book I do not actually want to watch the film. The author wove enough vivid imagery into the story that I have my own version in my head of how things look and I want to keep that, rather than watch a film of others interpretations.
Now the story. The synopsis does a cracking job of letting the reader know what they are kind of letting themselves in for. I had my doubts as to whether sitting down to read this a night after the OH had gone to bed was such a good idea! I am happy to say I survived and did read a good chunk of the book before my eyelids started to win the battle and I went to bed.
This is a fabulous psychological and apocalyptic thriller. Even though it is set in the near future, it is the psychological style that takes a precedence and adds that spine tingling element to the reading.
The story focuses on Malorie, she lives in a world that has undergone a major change, it has left survivors that are just hanging onto existence. At the beginning, the world watched, read and listened to stories coming from Europe in disbelief. It wasn’t until those stories started to emerge from the US that people living in America started to pay attention and then a realisation takes hold that they were not stories, this was really happening.
Malorie is a character I did not really warm to but that I also had a lot of time for. I know that sounds a little bizarre but she is a strong character, and let’s be honest she would have to be to survive. She does not trust easily, she is cold and almost clinical in her approach, especially towards the children. She is a woman determined to survive and determined to keep the children alive. She needs their senses as much as she needs her own, they have a role to play and they have to do that role to the absolute best of their ability…
Survivors have to keep their eyes closed, they must not look at what is outside. They are blindfolded and survive on relying on their other senses!
This is such a tense read and the author has done an absolutely cracking job of injecting spine tingling and chilling suspense into the story. It just oozes a dangerous and atmospheric air and the further I got the more it grew.
As I mentioned earlier, Malorie is the main focus. The story tells of how she realised that something in the world was going wrong, what she did to survive and how she came to be in the position she is now in. In the present tense she is making the decision to take a journey down the river with two children. The why’s and who’s are explained through the story.
The timeline for this book flits back and forth and had me totally gripped. The author did a fabulous job of developing his story to explain how the survivors did indeed survive and how living in a world where one of the major senses has to be taken away. This gave me pause for thought and made me wonder how I would negotiate going down to my garden and working out what was edible or ready to be eaten, while all the time wearing a blindfold. Life outside without being able to use sight, even though you have it, is a scary thought. No sneaky peeping out, or sideways glances, no using the periphery of your vision! If you do, well… let’s not even go there because it will not end well!
I liked how not everything was explained, things were left hanging. I have said this before when reviewing this style of book and again it is relevant here as well… If a catastrophic event was to occur would anyone person have all the answers anyway? Even if they did, who would they tell and how would they tell it anyway!
This is a book that readers who like a dystopian, chilling, psychological thriller read. It is one I would Absolutely Recommend!
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