Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Book review: A Drop of Night by Stefan Bachman

About the book (Summary from Goodreads):
Seventeen-year-old Anouk has finally caught the break she’s been looking for—she's been selected out of hundreds of other candidates to fly to France and help with the excavation of a vast, underground palace buried a hundred feet below the suburbs of Paris.

Built in the 1780's to hide an aristocratic family and a mad duke during the French Revolution, the palace has lain hidden and forgotten ever since. Anouk, along with several other gifted teenagers, will be the first to set foot in it in over two centuries.

Or so she thought.

But nothing is as it seems, and the teens soon find themselves embroiled in a game far more sinister, and dangerous, than they could possibly have imagined. An evil spanning centuries is waiting for them in the depths. . .

A genre-bending thriller from Stefan Bachmann for fans of The Maze Runner and Joss Whedon’s The Cabin in the Woods.

Review:

 
Stefan Bachmann's A Drop of Night is a bit of a mixed bag for me.

On the one hand, we have a book that blends a hosts of genres (speculative, horror and historical) that shouldn't work, and yet does (this book is described as being a genre-bending novel so it actually really does it justice).

On the other hand, we have a book that leaves us in the dark until almost the very end, without throwing in much clues along the way - which I'd usually be fine with if it didn't feel like it was something that had an ending that felt like it was thought up at the last moment.

Despite my criticism though, and because I CLEARLY love contradicting myself, I found this book hard to put down, simply because I had to know how it would all play out.

I mean, given that the narrative is a dual-structured one that switches between the past and present, and features a feisty, angry teen who finds herself part of group who end up being trapped in an underground palace, fighting for survival - well, it's kind of hard not to be intrigued, right?

While I enjoyed watching it all unfold, I didn't find any of the characters all that memorable. I enjoyed reading how they (mostly) banded together to try and navigate their way through a booby-trapped palace filled with unimaginable horrors, and loved the fact that the girls here were no damsels in distress.

So, all in all, not a bad book - I just wish they could have introduced the main plot point of the book earlier - I think it would have made the book that much more believable. But, that's just me.

Interested in reading this? You can purchase a copy from Raru.co.za


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