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- Latest Review: Crueler and more Unusual by Erik Dean
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Twelve strangers wake up in a house together with no idea how they got there, where they are or who the other people are. All they have is a set of house rules, which is not very long. Seems simple, right? You have no more supplies than are in the house—ok then. Your numbers have to be reduced by one (no more and no less) by a certain time each day or everyone dies—surely they can’t be serious? And redemption is the only key to escape! This has to be a joke...
The author feeds you titbits about each character and as you grow to like one something crops up and you change your mind. It’s an interesting dilemma to put out there—exactly how far is a person willing to go to save their life? As the bodies start piling up and the personalities come out you realise that there is a thread that binds them all together, but just when you think you have it figured out, you find you are wrong. Some of the more supernatural elements like the clock and the walls seemed strange, but I guess in the big scheme they make sense. The answer to escape is right there but it’s funny how so many will not accept it.
I started wondering if the plot was echoing Identity or Saw and then decided it was more like the ending to the Dark Tower series. The writing is engaging if a little rushed and it’s a quick read. The problem with it being a quick read and that bodies do pile up, is that you don’t really get to know any of the characters well and some of the questions surrounding the house and characters never get answered.
It’s a great idea for a story but could use a bit of work on the execution by allowing the reader to engage more with the characters and not rush through their stories. Thanks to Voracious Readers Only and the author for a copy of the book.