Friday, 11 September 2015

The Woman in Black by Susan Hill (2/5)

First published: 1983
Page count: 200

The back says: Proud and solitary, Eel Marsh House surveys the windswept reaches of the salt marshes beyond Nine Lives Causeway. Arthur Kipps, a junior solicitor, is summoned to attend the funeral Mrs Alice Drablow, the house's sole inhabitant, unaware of the tragic secrets which lie hidden behind the shuttered windows. It is not until he glimpses a wasted young woman, dressed all in black, at the funeral, that a creeping sense of unease begins to take hold, a feeling deepened by the reluctance of the locals to talk of the woman in black – and her terrible purpose.

I say: A few year ago I came to the resounding conclusion that I hate dislike gothic novels and should really stay clear of them. However, all these challenges and this silly desire to read all the classics means that every now and then I have to suffer through them.

And suffer I did...

There isn’t really that much to say about this novel other than it literally bored me to sleep, and I had to force myself to keep going over several days. I did not find any of the characters likeable; the plot was tiresome; and the prose grating. The only reason I didn’t give it 1/5 was because of the surprisingly weird end. Just as I was celebrating having reached the end something interestingly random happens.

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