Survive The Night
By Riley Sager
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Author’s Journal | Pen Date 4.17.22 | TW: VIOLENCE, Mental Health, Trauma, Death
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Charlie loves movies. Set in the early 90’s, Charlie has found escapism from life and the trauma of losing both her parents through the magic of cinema. The only thing is, it’s becoming a hallucinogenic coping mechanism. Tough times mean she’ll hallucinate situations as if it were a film.
And Charlie has had a rough couple months. First, she got in a fight with her best friend and left her at the bar. Then her bff turns up dead, the third victim of a serial killer known as the “Campus Killer.” Now, she’s shut down and can hardly find the will to keep going.
So, she’s dropping out, and rather than wait for her Prince Charming boyfriend to take her back in a week, she’s found a ride from New Jersey back to her home in Ohio through the ride share board. (Before apps, cork-boards were king)
The only problem is, did Charlie just get into a car with the man who killed her best friend — with the “Campus Killer.”
The first act was fine. I enjoyed all of the movie references. One could say, it’s an easy read too.
The whole thing. The prose relies so heavily on Charlie’s inner monologue of constant doubt, anxiety, and apprehension that it just drones on and on. The third act is an absolute dumpster fire that pulled out all the stops to cram every plot point in without a care for the overall narrative.
Then there are the “twists.” The narrative twists are so unbelievable and disingenuous that it was hard to keep reading. But the epilogue. That really did my head in. It undoes the entire story and makes me regret having ever been interested in reading this story.
Don’t read this book. There are very few books that I would ever say that about, but this one is not worth reader’s times. Return it, donate it, move on to another book in your TBR.
Sorry, not sorry.
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