Book review: Bird Box by Josh Malerman

So, my sibling suggested I read Bird Box by Josh Malerman. We chanced upon this exchange as I was talking about trying to find something on Netflix to watch – apparently this book is being filmed/has been filmed.

Anyway, Bird Box is a post-apocalyptic horror. It isn’t a genre I generally read although it does tick all the boxes that pertain to the genre.

I read most books in one sitting. This book was a page turner, it doesn’t overly tax you and the author keeps the momentum going. In fact the book just doesn’t let up. It wastes no time or words. It grabs you straight away and offers just enough description for you to fill in the rest with a wealth of horrible possibilities.

The characters are handled adequately enough to keep you engaged. I didn’t actually find myself rooting for any of the people specifically, but that’s probably symptomatic of the genre. I can’t actually say very much about the story itself as I don’t want to give anything away. Suffice it to say there is something happening to people across the globe and it doesn’t seem good. I think the author, if they had wanted to, could have made the characters more rounded by increasing the length of the novel. That said, perhaps that wasn’t the intent. Because of the way the characters were handled, I felt more empathy for the animals in the tale.

If you are looking for something you can consume quickly, a rapid story fix, then this is for you. I would say that the book is terrifying because it got me thinking about how fragile our societal structures, systems, relationships and technologies are. That stayed with me and made me (briefly) consider stocking up on tinned food and bottled water.

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