Most people ignored the outrageous reports on the news. But they became too frequent, they became too real. And soon, they began happening down the street. Then the Internet died. The television and radio went silent. The phones stopped ringing. And we couldn't look outside anymore. Malorie raises the children the only way she can; indoors. The house is quiet. The doors are locked, the curtains are closed, mattresses are nailed over the windows. They are out there. She might let them in. The children sleep in the bedroom across the hall. Soon she will have to wake them. Soon she will have to blindfold them. Today they must leave the house. Today they will risk everything.
Always on the lookout for a good horror novel, especially post apocalyptic ones, I came across Bird Box on a blog I regularly check for new releases. The blurb presented a world gone silent, with the people forced to lock themselves away and wear blindfolds outside. Something is out there, something that will make you crazy if you look at it. Added to that the characters of a mother and her children forced to risk everything to leave the safety of their house and it seemed as though Bird Box would be right up my alley.
Although I did enjoy it, Bird Box wasn’t as good as I had hoped. While the tension is palpable as the story progresses, especially in the sections in the novel ‘present’ as Malorie and her two children take a boat on the river to reach the safety of a commune that may or may not exist, the unclear and diffuse nature of the threat acted against that tension rather than for it. Malorie herself was not a particularly pleasant character in these ‘present’ sections and her reactions to the children left me more irritated than anything else. Still, the book could have been saved by a strong ending, but unfortunately the conclusion wrapped things up much too neatly, with very little resolution of what exactly is going on outside. Still, the book had a definite creep factor that kept me reading and the ‘past’ sections painted a clear picture of a world past the brink of disaster.
I gave Bird Box 3 stars.