Sooooo, it’s been a while since I’ve done one of these, but I promised I’d review every single novel I read (and that sadly has not been many 😦). Auntie can be found over here on Anna’s blog, and I’d recommend checking it out if you like stories of its genre. I’ll also have to do a review of The Hobbit one of these days, but two reviews in a row is bad form right? XP Anyway, enjoy. 🙂
Auntie is a dark psychological thriller written by Anna Belmonte. In it we follow the rather abstract and complex story of Felicia, an odd young girl living in an odd old house with some interesting familial relations and memories. Any fan of an abstract plot with just enough threads to hang on to will enjoy this work of fiction. Rather than ending in a convenient answer that ties everything up, the conclusion of Auntie brings with it a puzzle to ponder over, and whether or not one comes up with the “correct” interpretation of the story, the vibe emanating from it is enough.
Belmonte’s writing works well to keep the reader on edge with just enough “weirdness.” At every point in the story she presents information with just enough in holes in it that the reader wonders what could possibly come next to explain it. And here is where the true beauty of Auntie’s masterful story comes in. There’s never a true explanation. All the story presents the reader with are clues. These clues the reader must then use to piece together some kind of a picture that lurks within the beginning and ending words of Auntie.
The story keeps a consistent focus on Felicia and the mysterious events surrounding her. A cross between flashbacks, memories in a journal, and odd, seemingly out-of-place scenes intermingle with the story to create a mixed up timeline. Through this the story slowly unfolds, winding down into deeper and darker routes. Someone looking for a psychological thriller/horror story without all the typical clichés will find that with Auntie.
Personally, this story had me going back through it at least two and a half times to try and piece together the story. I came up with theory over a thousand five hundred words long by the second last chapter that readers who arrive at that point will find in the comments. Whether or not the reader chooses to go the shallow route and take the story at face-value or to dig deep and discover the essence behind the mysterious and haunting events of Auntie, it’s a read that brilliantly illustrates abstract storytelling.
As a personal fan of abstract writing, I really enjoyed this book. I can see how people who might not be willing to devote the time I did to search out the story might not enjoy it as fully as I did, but personally this book earns a five out of five star rating from me. As per usual with the books I enjoyed, it’s joined the others in my extensive books I recommend list (I’m going to have to reorganize that one of these days XD). Even in the aftermath of the story, when I had the entire plot explained to me by Belmonte herself, I was no less fascinated by the wonderful, dark, and intriguing story of–
This is here because it would look bad to have two consecutive lines of italics in a row.