Reviews

Disappearance at Devil's Rock, by Paul Tremblay

imogeno's review against another edition

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5.0

I loved the book but figured out the ending within the first few chapters. Knowing the ending and understanding the ending are two different things though so even if you figure out what happened it's still worth reading through. The journey through the book is haunting and agonizing, watching the family and friends of Tommy search for him and read through his life on the pages of his journal. ***The Kindle edition of the book does not allow you to read Tommy's journal entries and it is -imperative- to be able to do so in order to understand the book. *** I loved it and I loved the ending. It is worth a read, it is different from Head Full of Ghosts, but it still has the voice of Paul Tremblay who knows how to make your skin crawl, how to manipulate you so as you read so the hairs on the back of your neck rise and paranoia overtakes you.

raeallic's review against another edition

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5.0

Ive got chills! Omg that ending! Such a perfect read.

a_wondrous_bookshelf's review against another edition

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5.0

Tremblay's Disappearance at Devil’s Rock is not your usual horror book. I’m not sure I would really classify it as a horror novel, and although I don’t usually review this genre on this blog, I do read horror books quite often. This novel, however, falls under the psychological thriller category because what Tremblay so successfully mastered here was the ability to develop a slow narrative that is both creepy and terrorizing. Psychological stress, frustration, and the unknown are factors much more successful at instilling fear than the flat-out gory and macabre.

The book starts with the dreadful call that every parent fears—that your child is missing. With that premise, Tremblay takes us on a journey with Elizabeth and Kate through the frustrations, the fears, and the pains of having a missing child and not knowing what happened to him. Perhaps because I’m a mother, but also because of the way the story developed, I can say that this is the first book of this genre in which I have felt so much emotion emanating from the pages. I really liked Tremblay’s use of Tommy’s diary entries to give insight into Tommy’s mind and the days close to his disappearance. Without giving too much detail, all I can say is that my heart went out to Elizabeth, to Kate as well as Tommy, and although parts of the plot were a bit predictable, this is not a novel so much about whodunit but also about how the events shape the people involved.

The hallmark of a great novel is the ability to remain on your mind long after you’re done with the book. The disappearance at Devil’s Rock is ultimately a sad novel, but it is a great novel. By far the best book I’ve read in this genre this year.

I’d like to thank TLC Book Tours for providing me a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

itxh66's review against another edition

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dark medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

2.5

shiannefouts's review against another edition

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4.0

I’d really rather give this book 3.5 stars, not 4. It had such a slow start. But it picked up. It feels as if there were a few loose ends at the end of it, though.

kelroka's review against another edition

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4.0

I really enjoyed this book. First, I'm predisposed to like anything set in my neck of the woods (so to speak). Second, as with his previous book, Head Full of Ghosts , Tremblay's characters walk the line between fantasy and reality and that makes for a much less straightforward, but more interesting story.

bsb622's review against another edition

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dark mysterious tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes

4.0

bookw1tch's review against another edition

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2.0

3.5 Stars.

An overall creepy, chilling read. The build-up at the end was excellent. I had to stop reading towards the end because I was alone in my house late at night and started feeling pretty creeped out. The antagonist
SpoilerArnold
was definitely the best part of this story. He comes in unexpectedly halfway through and, although you know he has something to do with the boy's disappearance, he seems okay, if not an oddball. It isn't until things move along you realize how absolutely destroyed he is as a person, and how terrifying.

The overall amount of spooky ghostyness was great. It gives the story an edge and the ending interviews with the boys about
SpoilerTommy's zombie ghost thing
are disturbing.

Critiques: Took a bit for the story to get going; it could have easily been edited down 30 pages. Detective Allison was the biggest culprit of this - Tremblay kept trying to give her background with no apparent purpose. Her life played literally no role in the story; I started to wonder if he was pulling a Stephen King and added a character from one of his other books into this story. I'm not even sure we really needed this character. I got enough out of Elizabeth and Kate and the two boys, Detective Allison didn't add anything.

Another thing - if I had never played Minecraft or watched zombie movies, I would have been totally lost for a large chunk of the boy's conversations. They spend a ridiculous amount of time talking in-scene about Minecraft. I get it. They're 13-year-old boys. It's what they're obsessed with. But did we really need to see these conversations in-scene? I say no. It took away from the overall story and left me feeling like I would never recommend this book to anyone under 30. Also, the thematic connection between zombies and the boy's actions that
Spoilerleave an innocent man dead
didn't quite do it for me. Felt cheap, or an like incomplete analogy.

Anyway, not the greatest ghost story out there, but it did make me want to read his other more famous book, A Head Full Of Ghosts, which sounds really good.

ltdory's review against another edition

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2.0

I wouldn't class this as horror or thriller. Probably along the line as boring and dull with no climax or development within the story which is a shame, the synopsis describe it as interesting which to me, wasn't. No suspense, or thriller, It just repeated itself multiple times. I'm generous by giving it two stars.

biblio_kel's review against another edition

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3.0

I didn't mind the slow pace initially but the payoff just wasn't worth the time invested in finding out what happened.

The depiction of Elizabeth and how she deals with the disappearance of her son is why I'm giving this book 3 stars. That, in isolation, is worth 3 stars.