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Michelle CH

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Death Comes for the Archbishop
Willa Cather
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Possession
A.S. Byatt
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Plenty: One Man, One Woman, and a Raucous Year of Eating Locally
Alisa Smith, J.B. MacKinnon
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House of Leaves

House of Leaves - Mark Z. Danielewski

Frankly I like my books more straightforward. House of Leaves felt too clever for my liking. There are several story lines running at the same time and there are points when the writing needs to be read in a mirror or is highlighted with copious (and I mean copious) footnotes. Even though the novel was designed to take the reader on a journey, to me it felt like too much work and not enough of a reward. Throw in an unreliable narrator and I couldn't wait until the end finally came. It is also deceiving in length, much of the book's bulk is made up of appendices and end notes. Kudos to the author for keeping it all together as he was writing.

 

I liked the idea of a house that inexplicably expands on the inside but stays the same size on the outside. The house is a separate character in its own right and you can feel the malice that seeps through it. Although if my home was this bizarre I would have left much earlier than the Navidson family.

 

An expedition of men to find out where or how the house is expanding was the most interesting part to me. It was where the book really picked up and was filled with the right amount of terror and suspense.

 

This was a buddy read for me and my reading partner had also read Infinite Jest which has a similar structure. Overall, I just don't think that book was the right fit for me.