Audrey’s Door: Worth Opening?

audreys-doorAudrey’s Door, by Sarah Langan, is a very intriguing book. While it doesn’t shatter the horror/suspense genre, it sticks to conventions that work, provides us with incredibly believable characters, and deliverers a story that does not disappoint.

The story revolves around up-and-coming architect Audrey Lucas, a young woman who is plagued by a compulsive disorder and chaotic past. Having lived a nomadic existence with her mother Betsy, Audrey eventually decided to make it on her own by moving to New York City, applying herself in college, and landing a job at a prestigious firm. After having relationship issues with her fiancé, the gentle-but-lazy Saraub, she decides to find a place of her own and stumbles across the Breviary, which offers a surprisingly affordable apartment located on the Upper West side. However, the Breviary houses terrible evil, and it has been waiting for someone like Audrey to show up.

Much like the common psychological horror/thriller flicks that Hollywood bombards us with, the story of Audrey Lucas starts off rather slow. Admittedly, I had almost put the book down after a certain point. The characters were interesting, and the story well written, yet there wasn’t much going on. So what if Audrey has problems with Saraub? So what if she has OCD? The good writing wasn’t enough to keep me, so what did? The outstanding writing that occurs midway through the book.

Now, don’t get me wrong, once I got to the good bit, I could appreciate why Langan gives us such a detailed history in the early chapters. She doesn’t just present us with fictional characters that we observe; she gives us characters that we feel part of. When Aubrey’s OCD really gets out of hand, I could actually feel her hatred, her madness, and her confusion. Langan proved to me that a writer is still capable of immersing a reader inside the mind of a character and making them believable.

The story itself is not entirely original in its execution, but it works. It’s kind of like riding your favorite roller coaster; you know when to expect the big drops and the loops, but you love it anyway because it’s familiar and still gives you a rush. I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a quick read in the horror genre.

Mass Market Paperback: 432 pages
Publisher: Harper (September 29, 2009)
ISBN-10: 0061624217

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