2 weeks ago
Thursday, August 08, 2013
Turning A Walk Into Horror
The Wistfell family is your average suburban family really who happen to live in Las Sombras, California. As the story reminds us, not much happens there, but it is still L.A., and anything can happen there. Rob, his wife Amelia, and four year old Eva, have decided to head to the beach in order to start their weekend. They get lucky and find a parking space close to the beach, but some guys in a jeep that has been following them takes it before Rob can back into it. Rob confronts who he calls the jeep jerks, but eventually backs down and gives up the space. They have trouble with them again while on the beach as well. Once they get home, they find some kids playing in the street, and one of the older kids gives them a hard time as well. After dinner they decide to go for a walk. After running into some people who seem to be ready to get into a fight with them, they then run into a dog who also doesn't seem to like them. After all this they are able to enjoy their walk some, even if they have to go on a lot longer walk than planned. They come across two guys, who begin to follow them. Saggs and Cockeye, their street names, have decided that they are going to make the Wistfell's life a living hell.
When I got the books, Dawn wanted my to read Night Walk first. She didn't really say that, just wanted to know how the book was once I finished it. So, I decided to read it first. I admit that I had a tough time getting it started. As I have said before, I mostly read while at work, so there is always something going on to cut my break short. At least it feels that way sometimes. Once I got around 30 pages in, it went fairly quickly from there. I even managed to finish it at home instead of at work.
There had only been one book that I would step away from because I didn't want to know what was going to happen next. Deep down I did want to keep reading though. That book was Stephen King's Pet Sematary. I haven't read as many horror books as it seems like. I have actually been reading more of them since I started doing reviews for them. My books of choice lean more towards the fantasy genre. Because of that, I had yet to come across another novel that got to me so much. Night Walk is now the second novel to ever make me want to put it down because I did not want to know what was going to happen next. Of course I had to, just because it was usually time to go back to work. The whole time I would be thinking of Night Walk and I would have this inner debate going about if I wanted to read some more on my next break. I wanted to know, I had to know what was in store for the Wistfell family, but at the same time I was afraid to know what Hudnut had in store.
Hudnut breaks his book down into four parts and on hundred and thirty-four chapters. Each part is fairly specific. The first part introduces us to the Wistfell family and the start of their troubles. The second part deals with their walk and it also introduces a back story as well. The third part deals with what Saggs and Cockeye do to the Wistfell family. The last part is more or less the aftermath. Each part was slightly different, with the third part being the hardest to get through, and I mean that in a good way.
Part One was alright. It was a nice little introduction to the family and the trouble that they were already having, plus a hint of things to come. Part Two dragged a little bit. I say this because the walk took a long time. The family was being followed and they weren't sure what these two guys were up to, so there was a little tension going on there. I thought that the back story that was being told was a tad more interesting. It kept things fresh and I kept wondering how it would connect with the present day events. I figured it had something to do with either Saggs or Cockeye, but I wasn't sure how Hudnut would use the story later on. Part Three was very intense. Throughout this part of the book, Hudnut hints at something, but I was never sure what it was. This was revealed towards the end of this section, and goes on into part four. This part loses some of intensity that was built up, but I have to admit it was an interesting direction to take things.
Hudnut loves to hint at things to come. It doesn't always make a lot of sense at the time though. There were several times I was left thinking how a hint meant anything. Once things play out, and the end is reached, it was easy to think back on these things and see how it was all connected. I was a little disappointed that there wasn't more character development than there was. There is plenty for one of the bad guys, and it does make you feel a little sorry for the guy. It was interesting seeing how his life changed and how he became what we see in present day. We also learn some about Amelia and her family as well. There isn't as much detail, but it still covers what we find out about her now. There is nothing about Rob or Eva. Of course Eva is only 4, so there won't be much to tell about her anyway.
The only thing I didn't like about the story was how Hudnut would leave me hanging on what was happening at times. There are two places this happens. The first time was the back story for the bad guy. It just suddenly ends at part two of the book and isn't picked up again until part four. The other time, which was even worse for me, was that I didn't know what the hell was going on with Eva! Hudnut does tell, but he sure takes his time in doing so.
If home invasion wasn't bad enough, Hudnut also gives Eva the power to mess with a person's head. Eva can get into a person's head and press, what she calls, their fear button. This is something she is somewhat new at, so we learn about pretty much the same time the she is learning about it. This doesn't really even begin to tell you what is going on with the Wistfell family though. I can't say more than that since it was a nice surprise when it is revealed.
Night Walk isn't a perfect book, but it comes pretty close to it. There was some smaller problems I had with it, but they were easy to overlook and didn't take away my enjoyment of the book. Even the bigger problems wasn't able to do that. I really thought I would never find another book that would make me feel that I couldn't go on with the story because I was afraid to know what was going to happen. If Night Walk doesn't become a classic in the horror genre, then it will be a damn shame. If you love to read, this is a must have, no joke. Even if you aren't a big reader, I would still encourage you to find this book. I don't know if David Hudnut will ever read this review, but I still have to say thank you. Thanks so much for giving me that feeling I had nearly forgotten about back to me once again.
5 out of 5 Makes me wish I had never bought a home