[452]: Night Film by Marisha Pessl

DSC_0688GOODREADS SUMMARY | Bond Street Books | Hardcover, 624 pages | Publication Date: August 20th, 2013 | Adult Fiction | Thriller | Mystery |Suspense | Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

Scott McGrath’s obsession with reclusive film maker Stanislas Cordova almost killed his career as an investigative reporter. Now, years later, it seems that he will be pulled back in to his world again. With the apparent suicide of Ashley Cordova, Scott’s accusation against Stanislas becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. The family seems to be cursed; and anyone that had ever starred in his films doesn’t seem to come back the same person. What was it about this man that makes him untouchable? So untouchable, that not one of the actors or actresses ever want to talk about their experiences? ย What was it that drove him to create some of the most brilliant, terrifying horror films only to regress into a life of a hermit?

The last time Scott tried to get close to the director, he lost his career and his marriage – on the same day. This time, the stakes seem higher. The closer he gets to the truth, the more he realizes that what he’ll discover might end in frightening consequences. Ghosts? Black Magic? Satanic cults and practices? Scott might just lose more than his career when the dust settles.

If Alfred Hitchcock and Stephen King partnered up to create the most frightening project ever known to man, we’ll call that, “perfection”. But if they decided to to bring in M. Night Shayamalan’s brilliantย sometimes, lame twists, then Night Film would be the end result of that endeavour. That’s the only way I could perfectly ย explain the book. A couple of nights ago, I was on the tail end of a weekend-long flu. In my drug-induced insomnia, I decided to pick up this book.

That was not a good idea. If you’re like me, cold meds tend to make my heart palpitate. As soon as I saw that this book uses multi-media to heighten the thrill, I knew I was not going to sleep with the lights off. This book has all the makings of my ideal horror read. It had sinister ghosts, satanic cults, curses and a frightening mansion that held witness to every single gruesome film Cordova has ever created. Then in the end, it fucked with my head.

I’ve merely gleaned over what the book is about. True horror aficionados would appreciate the mind fuck that it will put them through. I, on the other hand, was able to appreciate the fact that it’s not the type of grisly horror wherein blood was practically the ink that was used to write the book. It’s mostly psychological; the kind that just when you think you’ve got it all figured out, the rug will be pulled out from under you.

Brilliant. Absolutely, brilliant.



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  • Honestly, I haven’t read more than a couple horror books and I think this will be a good one. But I’m a bit skeptic because the horror in books just doesn’t captivate me the way movies do. I hope this book will change that! ๐Ÿ˜›

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  • Holy crap, this book sounds like a true suspense horror and you don’t see many of those around anymore that truly mess with your hear and leave you scared to get up and pee during the night. There’s no way I could read this one going to bed, but during the daylight hours, I might actually give this one a go. It might leave me needing therapy, but still willing to give it a go. Brilliant review, I’m really intrigued now <3

  • SO glad you loved this one! I really want to read it myself so I just need to carve out a weekend and sit with this one. Very glad it has your seal of approval. Wonderful review! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • wow it sounds really well done and I confess I”m curious about the movie and the “curse”. It sounds so intriguing and perfect for this month! I want to try it as well, it’s been a while since I haven’t read a book like that. Great review!

  • This is an audible deal for $6.95 right now. I may click on over and buy it after reading your chilling review, Joy! I guess I need a “joy” shelf. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • It scared me all through the reading and much later. The part where we get to know about Cordova’s movies and all that back story was a total scare fest. Not in a horror and scream inducing way but a slowly creeping fear of the unknown kinda way. Did you use the App while reading?

  • This sounds like the kind of horror I would like – I’m not really into the grisly stuff, but the kind that messes with your head? Heck, yeah!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

  • I am a huge fan of books that ‘fuck with your head’! I love that twisted, dark, mind fuck, that just makes you terrified to sleep alone. This book sounds phenomenal, and I added it to my TBR pile. Thank you so much for this review, and yay for a 5 star book!
    Morrighan @ Elysian Fields
    ( http://ufbooks.blogspot.com )

  • Ohh, the cover looks shiny ๐Ÿ˜€ I do like shiny covers. <3 But yeah. Not a book for me. HMPH. But YAY for five stars ๐Ÿ˜€ That is all kinds of awesome. I'm so glad you loved this book Joy. <3 And I love reading your thoughts about it. And ack. I do love horror. But I love YA. Hmph. ONE DAY. One day I will want to read this. I hope ๐Ÿ˜€ Just so happy you loved it. <3 It sounds pretty awesome ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I adore those reads that completely mess with my mind! I love it. Awesome review!

  • First line I read of your review was ‘it fucked with my head’ so it kind of scared me lol….. I’m glad you enjoyed this book though! I hope you’re still able to sleep at night with the lights off ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Horror you say? Heck yeah! Scare me a la Hitchcock/King with a twist of Shyamalan!!

    Happy Halloween!

  • I’ve been wanting to dive into this book, but I live alone, so it’s not a great idea to read a book that would induce vertigo or heart palpitations! (And yes, sometimes MNS’ twists are pretty lame…but Signs, seriously, there was a scene that made me scream). When I read this book, it’ll be for the mind fuck. ๐Ÿ˜€