Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Book Review: The Fall by Bethany Griffin

Although The Fall starts out really slowly, the creep factor builds and the tension mounts all the way through to the end.

Madeline Usher has been trapped by the House (of Usher). She is unable to leave and the house is literally sapping the life out of her. Just as her mother and other relatives before her, she has inherited the curse of the house.

How did she get to this point? The Fall is told by Madeline from two perspectives. A young, 9 or 10 year old Madeline and a 17 to 18 year old Madeline. This flipping back and forth really dragged on. Madeline has a twin brother who was sent away to boarding school when they were 8 years old. He rarely visited, and his parents sent him away to protect him from the house. They knew that the house had chosen Madeline for the curse.

There are a a lot of creepy, macabre things that happen. Their are three doctors that live with them, first to take care of Madeline's mother, then to take care of Madeline. Everyone around her ends up disappearing or dying and she is left alone with the strange doctors.

There's a machine they've built in a room that supposedly keeps the house from knowing what they are doing. This isn't explained very well; it's a plot device that never reaches its full potential, and that is too bad. I would have liked that to be better explained.

At the end, we only get the older Madeline's POV, and that's when the story gets very tense as she is trying to keep her sanity and figure out how to escape. It just takes way too long to get to that point.

I enjoyed the writing and the descriptions and I'm glad I read The Fall. Just be warned that this one creeps along slowly before eventually grabbing you. A great choice for the Halloween season, fans of Poe, and The Fall of the House of Usher will be intrigued by this homage.

Published by Greenwillow, October 7, 2014
eARC obtained from Edelweiss
432 pages

Rating: 3.5/5

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