JAL has written another page turner.
When Theres was a baby someone tried to bury her alive. A couple of has-been musicians find her and try to raise her in secret as their musical prodigy, but discover something not quite right with the girl. She developmentally behind and prone to violent outbursts. Teresa, a girl with no imagination and no friends, suffering from depression, is looking for her place in a world that terrifies her. Theres offers Teresa friendship and Teresa can't resist.
The thing that makes Lindqvist's novels so scary is that his villains are relatable; he makes you love them, sympathize with them. He writes horror that isn't horrifying because the amount of monsters and murders, but because his villains present emotional/intellectual questions frightening new ways. Nurture vs. Nature: both girls with vastly different home lives grow into predators. So what is it that makes a monster? Are some people just born broken, or are they products of their environments? Loyalties: How strong can a friendship be when only one person emotes? Teresa loves Theres, is loyal to her, but how much does Theres actually feel in return? And does it matter? If you've ever been in a one-sided relationship and had to ask yourself how far you'll go for that someone who almost but not quite feels the same...
JAL creates a haunting relationship based on the need for purpose and power. Enter a world where there is no such thing as innocence and the only thing more dangerous than two emotionally disturbed girls is a pack of them.
Review's original post date:
January 3, 2013