Goodreads synopsis: Seven-year-old Wen and her parents, Eric and Andrew, are vacationing at a remote cabin on a quiet New Hampshire lake. Their closest neighbors are more than two miles in either direction along a rutted dirt road.
One afternoon, as Wen catches grasshoppers in the front yard, a stranger unexpectedly appears in the driveway. Leonard is the largest man Wen has ever seen but he is young, friendly, and he wins her over almost instantly. Leonard and Wen talk and play until Leonard abruptly apologizes and tells Wen, "None of what’s going to happen is your fault". Three more strangers then arrive at the cabin carrying unidentifiable, menacing objects. As Wen sprints inside to warn her parents, Leonard calls out: "Your dads won’t want to let us in, Wen. But they have to. We need your help to save the world."
The Cabin at the End of the World grasped my interest and held it tight with an unrelenting feeling of paranoia.
This was such a great read. Actually, I think this was the most original story or concept I've had the pleasure to read in a long time. Paul Tremblay is a master of manipulation and suspense. I guarantee that by the end of this story you won't know what to believe, I'm still undecided. I also really enjoyed his stylistic writing. I found his words to be profound and captivating which consistently made me eager to turn to the next page. I took issue with the flow at times. Some scenes just didn't seem to fit or keep rhythm with the overall story. Regardless, I was deeply rooted in this compelling tale from start to finish.
“They share another long look. This one is reserved for ill-fated observers in the moments before impending, inescapable calamity, whether it be a natural disaster or violent failure of humanity; a look of resigned melancholy and awe, unblinking in the face of a revealed, horrific, sacred truth. And they realize again, in this darkest hour of the darkest day, they remain alone, fundamentally alone.”
My barber is going to have a few questions for me the next time I see him because I'm pretty sure I pulled most of my hair out trying to figure out what the hell happened in this book. To clarify, I was more frustrated with the fact that I couldn’t decide if the antagonists were crazy or if the world was actually going to end. The author did such an amazing job with this story. It all starts with a slow creep that quickly snowballs leaving the reader with a deep sense of paranoia and unease. As the tension builds, so will the reader's inability to differentiate between right and wrong. I promise that by the end of this book you're likely going to question any thoughts or predictions you had going into this read. I think Will Smith said it best, “my life got flipped-turned upside down”.
“The cabin is now a haunted house, baptized by yesterday’s violence,”
Profound and captivating are words I use to describe Paul Tremblay's writing style but I could easily have said intelligent or entertaining as well. Often I find the story or plot is what drives me to like a particular book but in this case, it was certainly the author. I couldn't help being lost in this story and completely consumed by the written words of Paul Tremblay. I've never read anything like this before and if any of his other books are similar to this in writing style, it won't be the last of his books I read.
“He’ll be doomed to say sorry for eternity and no one will listen and no one will believe him.”
One issue I had while reading The Cabin at the End of the World was the flow. The problem I had here was small but noticeable. There were some flashback scenes that felt off, they didn't fit with the writing style and pace that I enjoyed so much. Oddly enough, I do feel these scenes were necessary. Maybe it was the way they were written or maybe it was where they were placed in the story but it just felt off. Fortunately, the unenjoyable feeling I had quickly subsided as this wonderful story took off again and I was plunged deep into cabin fever (that's what I call my love for this book now, cabin fever).
I gave The Cabin at the End of the World 4 / 5 stars. This was the first book I've read by Paul Trembley and it's definitely not the last. In fact, immediately after reading the e-book I went and bought four of his most recent novels including The Cabin at the End of the World. And why not!? It's not every day you can find an extraordinary writer that has the ability to manipulate the mind and provide a creepy story full of suspense.
My name's Andrew. I'm a husband and father who loves to read all things dark, thrilling, mysterious, and suspenseful. I didn't always enjoy reading but have been nothing short of obsessed over the last five or so years. The obsession has lead to writing and so here I am fighting for time to read and write while trying to work a full-time job and satisfy my family’s needs (#1 priority).