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“How can she expect her children to dream as big as the stars if they can’t lift their heads to gaze upon them?”

“Breathing hard and sweating, Malorie prays a person can hear all the way to safety.”

“The world outside, the empty malls and restaurants, the thousands of unused vehicles, the forgotten products on idle store shelves, all of it presses in on the house. It all whispers of what awaits them.”

One Million Page Princess

Malorie is in her early twenties when the news reports start flooding in about something terrible happening all over the world, and how simply looking at an unknown entity will turn you suicidal, and if you’re near others, homicidal as well. She is living with her sister Shannon when reports of these entities being in the United States begin to surface, and it is at this point she discovers she is pregnant with a baby by a man she barely knows. The situation escalates quickly, and soon the two sisters are locked in a house with no means of communicating with the outside world. Not that it matters though, as it seems most people are already dead. The Internet dies too. Then the TV and radio go as well. Whoever is left must board up all their windows and doors, and must wear a blindfold if they have to venture outdoors. You cannot open your eyes.

Bird Box is the story of Malorie’s survival.

It is The Road, meets The Mist, meets The Happening, but better. It is an excellent example of a horrific end-of-the-world story that isn’t too gory, contrived, or predictable. It plays on the psychological aspects of fear, by acknowledging how much scarier something is when we can’t see it, or understand it. It was gripping and I couldn’t put it down. I truly think this book would make an AMAZING movie, if they could figure out how to capture the protagonist’s inability to see the world around her, and avoid ever showing what it is that makes you go crazy.

Normally I’m not a huge fan of horror, but Bird Box is different. It’s not about blood and guts, or shock value, or the monster under the bed. It’s a story of survival that appeals to a very real and biological fear of the unknown, and our ability (or inability) to deal. I loved that the protagonist was not only female, but a mother as well. I loved how authentic and individual the characters were, and I loved that it kept me curious for all 272 pages.

Bravo Josh Malerman. I totally recommend this one if you’re looking for an on the edge of your seat page turner. This would be a great read come October and you’re looking for something slightly spookier.

Until next time,

OMPP