Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Little Stranger

I don't usually read old house/foggy night/things that go bump in the night books.

But I'm glad I read this one, because it sucked me in the first few pages and swept me away with a tale twisting with logic and despair. The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters is a swooping ride that begins with an old memory of a childrens tea at a grand house and broadens to encompass a young doctor and the nearly-penniless family that still lives in the ruined manor.

Something is changing the people of the house. Something...strange. The author wends the spell carefully, dropping hints here and there, never giving you too much information at once, always with the scent of something's not quite right rising from the pages.

There was a point at which I had to close the book and go find my husband downstairs, half-convinced that if I looked too closely at the corners of the room I would espy something.

Something -or someone, casting a pale light.

The ending, while tidy, wasn't the firecracker tell-all I expected - but while it wasn't as exciting as I'd hoped, it certainly brought the entire book to a close well and set me back in the real world with a thump.

I'd be interested in what you thought of it!

The Little Stranger, by Sarah Waters

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