Thursday, August 03, 2023

REVIEW: The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters

The Little Stranger
My Rating: ★★★★★★★☆☆☆

Hundreds Hall had its heyday back in the prewar era and since then, has fallen into a state of disrepair and gloom. It's current inhabitants, the latest family of Ayres, are gentry stock that have fallen victim to the times and their lives are slowly being chipped away. But when Dr. Faraday, a local family physician visits the house, he invariably becomes entwined with the family and their various ordeals. But just what is torturing this family and driving them to such decline and madness... that is the question!

This was a spooky tale of a family slowly drawn to the brink of madness by the supernatural events going on in their house. Of course, during these times, any mention of supernatural occurrences was met with disbelief and claims of hysteria. So you've got the good Dr. Faraday, who is the narrator of this tale, trying to explain everything away with what he believes to be very rational explanations. I felt like screaming at his close-mindedness... but then again, during these early days of science, parapsychology, and even psychology itself, was still looked upon with so much skepticism, so I guess having a doctor believe in that sort of thing back then would've felt completely out of context for the time.

It was the atmospheric writing and sense of dread that kept me engaged however. For Sarah Waters is a fantastic writer that, even when I don't care for the characters as much, I'm still very much drawn into the story. I think I'd have to say little Betty was my favorite character by far!

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