Slade House by David Mitchell (Random House, 2015)
Synopsis: Keep your eyes peeled for a small black iron door.
Down the road from a working-class British pub, 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. 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.
Review: 3.75 / 5
So, I have never read a David Mitchell novel. I didn't know what to expect. I was walking through the bookstore and the strange form factor and color of the book caught my eye. This book is every bit as strange as it looks. I really draw similarities to the novel Under the Skin and maybe a bit of a haunted house story, but this book is just to strange to explain. Which that can be bad, that also can be good. I think this book succeeds in its strangeness for several reasons. I didn't know that to expect, I really couldn't piece together the story until the author laid it out, and I had no idea what the hell I was reading half of the time. While I knew what was happening, just the way it happens makes it confusing. It is hard to explain, but if you read the book, then you will know what I am talking about. The book just has this sense of dread and sadness, but combines multiple genres for an odd mix of horror, thriller, crime, supernatural, and college themes (the house party scene). If you think you know what you are going into, you don't. I had not read The Bone Clocks but I do know that this book takes place in the same world as the novel from Mitchell's collection. I would serious consider looking up more things about it if you are on the fence, but overall it was a short, entertaining, (not so) scary novel. I may read more of Mitchell's work in the coming year, but we will see...