I thought this was a beautifully horrifying read.
Rating: Unable to rate
She’s the sweet-but-silent angel in the adoring eyes of her Daddy. He’s the only person who understands her, and all Hanna wants is to live happily ever after with him. But Mommy stands in her way, and she’ll try any trick she can think of to get rid of her. Ideally for good.
She loves her daughter, really, but after years of expulsions and strained home schooling, her precarious health and sanity are weakening day by day. As Hanna’s tricks become increasingly sophisticated, and Suzette's husband remains blind to the failing family dynamics, Suzette starts to fear that there’s something seriously wrong, and that maybe home isn’t the best place for their baby girl after all.
This was voted as my October #EnchantedReadsBookClub pick and I’ll just say from the start, this will definitely spark a conversation. This book is something else.
It touches on so many things that I’m sure everyone will have their own opinions on. From mental health to parenting choices. This book creates a conversation. However, that being said, this is not a book for everyone. It will make you uncomfortable. I even struggled to get through this at times. There’s a lot to unpack here.
This book creates a conversation. However... this is not a book for everyone.
We follow a family of three, and through the eyes of the mother and daughter, we’re introduced to an interesting family dynamic. While daddy is off at work, Hanna is a monster towards her mother. But the second daddy’s home, she’s a perfect little angel. Because of this drastic switch, Suzette’s husband is unwilling to believe his little angel is truly doing everything Suzette claims.
This is the first book I’ve ever found myself simply unable to rate. That’s not to say I didn’t think it was a good book. I thought this was a beautifully horrifying read. I was deeply disturbed by Hanna’s action. But also found the mother wasn’t entirely blameless. The story while captivating was genuinely hard for me to stomach at times. I also fear that this could have been a story that might be very real to some families, which makes this even scarier. And I personally found myself unable to give this a rating because of these feelings.
This is the first book I’ve ever found myself simply unable to rate. That’s not to say I didn’t think it was a good book. I thought this was a beautifully horrifying read...
As I mentioned, I was captivated by the story. I wanted to know what would happen to this family. It was gruesome to follow but not in the way you might think, there was no blood or gore. Just a deeply disturbed child. Hanna’s actions made me nervous, I never knew what she was going to do next. I was uncomfortable almost all the way through reading this. At some point, I even considered DNF’ing this because I was so uncomfortable. There was one scene in particular that almost made me ill. Just by how cruel Hanna was towards others, it made me sick. But curiosity got the best of me. I wanted to see how things would play out.
...curiosity got the best of me. I wanted to see how things would play out.
And I’ll be honest, I thought the ending was very reasonable from the parents’ perspective. They loved Hanna, that was apparent to me. The way it ended was how I expected it to go. So I wasn’t surprised, but I was happy it went that route. Though the actual ending itself left it a bit open. Leaving a “what’s going to happen next” that also made me nervous.
Again, this is not going to be a book for everyone. At first, shortly after I started I was curious as to how this was labeled as horror. That quickly became obvious the farther I got in the story. After finishing, I agree fully that this belongs among the horror genre. It may not be the conventional horror novel, but this will definitely turn your stomach a few times.
I struggle to suggest who might enjoy this. I wouldn’t even say I enjoyed this? Saying I enjoyed this feels wrong. But I don’t regret reading this. I guess I would have to say if you enjoy family thrillers especially involving mental health, consider this one. But make sure you’re not light of heart, this is bound to get under your skin.