Reviews

The Visible Filth by Nathan Ballingrud

abbennsky's review

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dark mysterious reflective tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

2.75

anti_formalist12's review

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3.0

Real good horror creepy vibes with this one.

panopticae's review

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dark sad tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.0

mcwilton1123's review

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dark mysterious tense medium-paced

5.0

tiredandspice's review

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3.0

Unique, but not as fleshed out as I hoped

I love this author, but I think this would have been better served as either a vague vignette of a short story (would have fit right in with his short story collection) or a longer, more fleshed out novel. Still, itā€™s the most original and unique thing Iā€™ve read in a while.

lkkirk75's review

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adventurous dark mysterious sad tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.5

macaruchi's review

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3.0

Yikes, this is a tough one to review. I think the story is fine, it is well written but it was too disturbing for me, which you could say is a good thing for a horror story, but the problem is that it wasn't the good kind of disturbing (and the fact that I consider that there's a "good kind of disturbing" should mean that I like this genre and I like weird stuff). I don't think that it would be fair for me to rate it higher than three stars since I didn't really enjoy it that much, even though I think it might be a good piece of literature if you're into that type of horror, which I'm obviously not.
I did enjoy some parts of it, at times it seemed to be going so well and then...oh man...

I have no idea how this book got under my radar and why I decided that I wanted to read it, and why I continued to read it even after being disgusted on the first page, and why I decided to watch the nightmare fuel trailer for the movie after I finished the book.

For some reason I seem to write longer reviews for books that I don't like that much than for those that end up being my favorites. I should probably think about what that means

vickybrewster's review

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dark mysterious tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.75

howlinglibraries's review

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dark tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

Ā I've been meaning to read this for ages, especially after how much I love Ballingrud's collection North American Lake Monsters years ago, and I'm glad that I finally did. It's been a while since I've read anything from this author and I had forgotten how good he is at creating these complex, flawed, and sometimes downright awful characters that I can't quite tear my gaze away from, no matter how many terrible decisions they make. I was captivated from the very start of the story and was never quite sure where things were headed, making it an incredibly suspenseful little novelette. My only complaint, and the reason I gave it 4 stars instead of 5, is that the ending felt a little rushed. After 60 pages of build-up and well-developed dread, I was a little surprised by how quickly the climax came and went, and wish it had been even 5 or 10 pages longer. That said, I enjoyed The Visible Filth a lot and I'm glad I was given this reminder of why Nathan Ballingrud's work in the NALM collection was so influential on my adult horror reading preferences.
Ā 

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coralhaze's review

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

4.0

Not sure how original the story is, as it certainly feels like the ā€œapathetic guy with no prospects and bad relationshipsā€ character trope is familiarā€¦ but regardless, the writing is incredible and the story certainly freaked the hell out of me.Ā