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review 2019-01-12 10:12
The Woman In Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
The Woman in Cabin 10 - Ruth Ware

Lo Blacklock, a journalist who writes for a travel magazine, has just been given the assignment of a lifetime: a week on a luxury cruise with only a handful of cabins. The sky is clear, the waters calm, and the veneered, select guests jovial as the exclusive cruise ship, the Aurora, begins her voyage in the picturesque North Sea. At first, Lo’s stay is nothing but pleasant: the cabins are plush, the dinner parties are sparkling, and the guests are elegant. But as the week wears on, frigid winds whip the deck, gray skies fall, and Lo witnesses what she can only describe as a dark and terrifying nightmare: a woman being thrown overboard. The problem? All passengers remain accounted for—and so, the ship sails on as if nothing has happened, despite Lo’s desperate attempts to convey that something (or someone) has gone terribly, terribly wrong…

Amazon.com

 

 

 

 

Travel writer Laura "Lo" Blacklock is struggling with overwhelming anxiety since a strange man broke into her apartment and assaulted her. When her boss is hospitalized, an opportunity arises for Lo to fill in for her on a travel assignment aboard the "luxury cruise liner" Aurora. Lo is to be a passenger on the ship's maiden voyage and write of the experience, the accommodations, and the finale event involving a viewing of the Northern Lights while exploring the Norwegian fjords.

 

It takes 5 chapters for Lo to even get anywhere near a dock, let alone ON the boat. Once on the boat, the reader is made to suffer through pages of boring dinner conversation that we really didn't need to be there for. The way the characters interact with each other in this novel brought to mind low-budget murder mystery dinner theater. Once that fizzles out, we go back with Lo to her cabin, where she drinks, mopes about her life, and passes out. She starts up in the middle of the night, nerves on edge. Unable to get back to sleep, she tries to read. From there, we are asked to believe that Lo was able to hear a sound described as "the scrape of paper against paper" over the hum of the ship's engine AND the roll of ocean waves. Lo looks up, sees a body go overboard. Once she reports what she saw, the novel turns into an actual whodunit, though it poses the question of whether an actual death occurred or are we dealing with the hallucinations of someone who chose to mix alcohol with antidepressants? (One line that gave me an honest LOL moment: Lo casually saying "I really need to stop drinking mid-week." Not sure why that tickled me so much, but it did!). Who knew so much would ride on one little pink and green tube of Maybelline Great Lash!

 

 

Image result for Maybelline Great Lash

The book is divided into eight parts, the end of each part offering a snippet of text messages, emails, social media posts, or newspaper articles, all indicating a break in communication somewhere. Gradually hints pile up that while Lo is on this trip, her communications are not reaching friends and family (and neither are theirs to her), leading them to believe she's gone MIA.

 

What a confusing mess this book turned out to be! It started out promising enough, but not enough time was spent on relevant character or plot development, too much placed on forgettable minutiae. I'm still a little confused as to what kind of boat the Aurora is supposed to be? It's first described as "a boutique super luxury cruise liner" with ten cabins ... okay, but what is that... like a yacht? Later in the book it says the Aurora is "more like a large yacht than a small cruise liner" WTH IS THE DIFFERENCE? Pardon me, I'm not in the boat world lol.

 

 

Though this was marketed as one of the must-read thrillers of its publication year, I felt no thrills, chills, suspense, nothing while reading this. Not a one. Flatline. There's a few little interesting revelations in the end, but even there, there is much that relies on already established techniques / ideas within this genre.

 

Lastly, let's talk about Lo. Lo was just too much. You want to give her credit in the beginning because she just went through a trauma, but man is she just all-around unlikeable. Though she seems to have a pretty low perception of herself, simultaneously she can also be wildly self absorbed. And WHINY. OMG, so whiny! Then she'll feel bad, so then comes the flood of apologetic behavior... followed by bursts of lashing out later. Then the cycle resets. Exhausting!

 

 

Related image

 

As a journalist, she's lazy as all get-out. She even tells the reader herself, “For a travel journalist I’m worryingly bad at geography.” You know, that could be easily remedied if you gave a damn. Nope, instead we get her posing questions regarding this suspected murder to cruise guests and crew, only to follow up -- when they ask "why do you ask?" -- with a "doesn't matter". You get 'em, Poirot.

 

And is EVERY MAN in this story an enemy to Lo?! Those breathing exercises she keeps attempting clearly aren't doing much for her. I've suffered assaults worse that what happens to Lo here and even I'm able to very easily interact with the opposite sex on a daily basis without assuming every single one of them is a shady mofo out to ruin me. You don't condemn the entire group for the dishonorable actions of a despicable few!

 

My favorite part of this entire book was the raised texture on the watery cover! Fun trick I found, if you run your fingertips across it, it actually does kinda make a sound similar to the ocean! Reading experience saved! (You're welcome.)

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review 2018-10-19 09:35
REVIEW BY MERISSA - The Cabin (Close Proximity #2) by Erin M. Leaf
The Cabin (Close Proximity #2) - Erin M. Leaf

The Cabin is the second book in the Close Proximity series, and we meet Flynn who has just been jilted at the altar, and Beau, an artist from LA with a reservation gone wrong. Flynn offers his couch for the night, due to the weather conditions and the mix up, but finds more than he bargained for in Beau.

Whilst not as quick as The Elevator, this story is nevertheless a quick one, fast-paced and punchy, just like I would expect from this author. It is well written, with no editing or grammatical errors that disrupted my reading flow. The bulk of the story with Flynn and Beau is set over one night, although there is a time lapse at the end.

I am thoroughly enjoying these books, even if the cynical side of me is snorting at the insta-love! Definitely recommended by me.

* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and my comments here are my honest opinion. *

Merissa
Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!

Source: archaeolibrarian.wixsite.com/website/single-post/2018/09/19/The-Cabin-Close-Proximity-2-by-Erin-M-Leaf
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review 2018-10-11 03:17
The Cabin at the End of the World
The Cabin at the End of the World - Paul Tremblay

Oh. My god. This book is amazing and heartbreaking and horrifying all at once. I love it. I really do.

 

So, to start, I read most of this at work and I feel it's important to say that I don't make a habit out of reading at work. It's been an oddly slow week though and so the book is a good option of keeping myself entertained. I definitely chose a good book for that.

 

Tremblay has a way with words that is just incredible. Like, this is one of the few books I read and really consider art, an example of why good writing is a craft. Everything was so well formulated and put together it's insane. I wish this book was out when I was in college because I could spend HOURS dissecting every little detail, exploring every little theory. 

 

The greatest triumph to this book is the emotional investment it gets from me as a reader. I had the heebie jeebies at the end of chapter one, just from the way he describes the approach of the strangers. I felt that uncomfortable horror all throughout the book, and in many ways, this is a scary book. It preys on the kind of horror that really keeps me awake at night. 

 

But it has its humor and lighter moments and all the characters are incredible. Wen, of course, is amazing but I think Sabrina was my favorite after I read the chapter from her perspective. That chapter was chilling and I have goosebumps just thinking about it. 

 

Really, much like Bird Box, my only complaint about the book is that it had to end and that it ended without much explanation. Was the group right or were they manipulated? Is the world really going to end? What was the figure of light and what was controlling the strangers? That's part of what makes this book scary, the lack of answers at the end, but that's also what makes this book specifically a horror novel. I still wish it was more definitive, but at the same time I wouldn't change a thing.

 

Final rating: 5 out of 5 stars. I'm emotionally spent and gonna go cry in a corner for a few minutes. All good things, of course.

 

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text 2018-10-10 21:25
Reading progress update: I've read 200 out of 270 pages.
The Cabin at the End of the World - Paul Tremblay

This thought hit me on my lunch break:

Redmond: War

Adrian: Famine

Sabrina: Pestulance 

Leonard: Death

 

I figured they were the Four Horsemen early on (Or Four Archangels, or both) but it just hit me which was which. Come and see, as the first section says.

 

The question is, how is this gonna effect the final resolution? Is Wen Jesus? I can see it.

(spoiler show)
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text 2018-10-09 22:29
Reading progress update: I've read 120 out of 270 pages.
The Cabin at the End of the World - Paul Tremblay

I haven’t sped-read a book this fast since Bird Box. I don’t think it will take me long to get through this one.

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