Book Review – Bird Box: A Novel by Josh Malerman

Posted May 23, 2014 by Bonnie in Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2014 / 8 Comments

Book Review – Bird Box: A Novel by Josh MalermanBird Box by Josh Malerman
Published by Ecco on May 13th 2014
Pages: 262
Genres: Horror
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository

Also by this author: Black Mad Wheel, Unbury Carol


Something is out there, something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse of it, 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 remains, 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's 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. Something is following them all the while, but is it man, animal, or monster?

Interweaving past and present, Bird Box is a snapshot of a world unraveled that will have you racing to the final page.

‘They are monsters, Malorie thinks. But she knows they are more than this. They are infinity.’

Bird Box is about an unseen horror that slowly consumes the world. Starting in Russia, news begins pouring in about people going mad and attacking people before turning the violence on themselves. The only correlation between each event is that these people saw something before completely losing their minds.

The story alternates between past and present and does an amazing job at building up the intensity levels to the point where you think it can’t possibly get more extreme. But it does. And continues to do so until the final pages. We’re first introduced to Malorie who has recently found out she’s pregnant. She lives with her sister who is obsessed with watching the news and reading up on the attacks in Russia. The attacks begin spreading and soon enough they’re hearing of incidents in Alaska and eventually in their own town. The only hope for salvation is by keeping their eyes closed. Always. The story then switches to the future, where Malorie and her two four-year old children have managed to survive but are attempting to traverse a river blind in order to get the help they need. Meanwhile, she is certain they are being followed but not being able to see their pursuer keeps them in constant darkness.

Bird Box is the epitome of suspense. It’s a truly terrifying and unsettling thing to not be able to see, especially when you know you’re forever being watched by something. Something that could cause you to lose your mind with even the briefest glance. These characters are forced to blind themselves in order to adapt to this new post-apocalyptic type world and the portrayal of this forced handicap is extraordinarily done as the reader is also blind to the unknown. Imaginations will run rampant with a host of terrifying possibilities as to what lies just beyond your blindfold. Bird Box is the perfect novel for fans of horror and psychological thrillers, but many will likely have issue with the ambiguous ending.


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