Keep your eyes peeled for a small black iron door. Down the road from a working-class British pub and along the brick wall of a narrow alley. If the conditions are exactly right, you’ll find the entrance to Slade House. A stranger will greet you by name and invite you inside. At first, you won’t want to leave. Later, you’ll find that you can’t leave. Every nine years, the house’s residents, an odd brother, and sister extend a unique invitation to someone who’s different or lonely: a precocious teenager, a recently divorced policeman, a shy college student. But what really goes on inside Slade House? For those who find out, it’s already too late…
Spanning five decades, from the last days of the 1970s to the present, leaping genres, and barreling toward an astonishing conclusion, this intricately woven novel will pull you into a reality-warping new vision of the haunted house story, as only David Mitchell could imagine it.
Slade House initially seems like a typical horror story – an old house located in a place it cannot possibly be, strange disappearances, and a pair of mysterious twins with a horrible secret. A genuinely creepy story that gives you time to breathe and not over-explained. As usual, Mitchell writes developed and wonderful characters, causing the reader to care, and be concerned for them. All the while, he slowly develops the antagonists, enabling you to understand their ways much better so you’re not ending up simply disliking them without a good reason, however, he lets your hate for the deserving ones blossom into hopes of them failing.
In the first chapter, we are introduced to Nathan Bishop, a young, struggling teen who seems to be self-drugged by valium. For forty-three pages, we follow Nathan and Jonah through conversation and activities which seem to make unexplainable leaps. Nathan goes through a variety of strange events after entering Slade House, which the reader is led to attribute to his double dose of sedatives.
Readers who love Mitchell’s genre-bending writing style won’t be disappointed — he remains a master at his craft. But these same readers might find that narrators in Slade House sound similar to those in other novels. And though this book expands on Mitchell’s alternative reality universe, characters clumsily, and sometimes too obviously, explain how the plot’s fantastical elements work.
About the book Author
David Mitchell is the award-winning and bestselling author of Slade House, The Bone Clocks, The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, Black Swan Green, Cloud Atlas, Number9Dream, and Ghostwritten. Twice shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, Mitchell was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time in 2007. With KA Yoshida, Mitchell translated from the Japanese the internationally bestselling memoir The Reason I Jump. He lives in Ireland with his wife and two children.
Title: Slade House
Author: David Mitchell
Published Date: October 27, 2015
Genre: Fiction, Horror, Suspense
Publisher: Random House
Format: Hardcover, Kindle
Pages: 265 pages
Reviewed by: Kathryn Price
Our Rating: 4.0 /5
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