Monday, January 30, 2012

Review: We Have Always Lived in the Castle

We Have Always Lived in the Castle
We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The story of two girls. Constance is quirky, kind-hearted and agoraphobic. Merricat is dark with some twisted fantasies and lots of paranoia. Both girls live in their family mansion with Uncle Julian.

I had thought it might be a ghost story from some reviews, but I must have misread them, because it read more like a cross between Neil Gaiman meets The Grey Gardens.

Right from the start, you read the psychopathic thoughts that Merricat has, and thus the mystery of these two girls and what happened to their family begins. Why does the village despise them? Why doesn't Constance leave the house? What happened to their parents, brother, and Aunt? It eventually makes it way there, but likely could have done it quicker and in more of a shorter story sense.

It's a disturbing story, but nothing graphic takes place. I went into it with expectations and that is my own fault, because that usually sets it up for failure. In my mind, it didn't deliver what I expected, but overall, not a bad read and it only took a short afternoon with it being around 160 pages.

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