Home Before Dark Review
Updated: Jul 16
What was it like living in that house?
This is the question Maggie has been asked her whole life. Twenty-five years ago she and her parents moved into a house called Baneberry Hall and fled in the middle of the night 20 days later.
What was it like living in that house?
This is the question Maggie has been asked her whole life. Twenty-five years ago she and her parents moved into a house called Baneberry Hall and fled in the middle of the night 20 days later. Her father wrote a book, House of Horrors about their experiences there. Maggie believed it was nothing but lies. Now her father is dead, and in her inheritance, she gets the keys to Baneberry Hall. She decides to go back against her parents’ wishes to learn what really happened there to prove it was nothing but lies. But after she returns she starts to experience strange occurrences that sound exactly like what happened in her father’s book and she starts to wonder if his book said more truths than she originally believed.
The whole vibe of this book is one giant ghost story, something I truly enjoy especially being a Stephen King fan. I went into this one not knowing what to expect. But I couldn’t help but be disappointed at the fact the ending wasn’t what I was envisioning. However, the entirety of this book kept me captivated from the first page. I was hooked literally from that first page. The short chapters kept me intrigued, it flowed really well. Switching between Maggie’s point of view and portions of her father’s book.
I read the majority of this continuously so I didn’t spend a whole lot of time pondering what was the true story. I just kept reading. If I didn’t have to sleep and eat and you know to take part in family activities, I probably could have finished this in one day.
The whole vibe of this book is one giant ghost story, something I truly enjoy especially being a Stephen King fan.
Even though the ending wasn’t what I was expecting, I truly enjoyed reading this one. I can’t say I liked it better than Riley Sager’s other books I’ve read. I’d say it ties with Lock Every Door. The Last Time I Lied is currently my favorite of Sager’s books. But I still need to read his book, Final Girls.
Overall, I really liked this book. It had several things I like in a book, a constantly moving plot, nothing felt slow or boring, these edging thoughts of what-ifs and the clues scattered throughout. It wasn’t a mad dash at the end. Though it wasn’t as spread out like in The Last Time I Lied, it wasn’t all explained in at the end like The Turn of the Key. I can’t wait to read Final Girls and any future books of Riley Sager.
Anyone who enjoys scary stories, horror, thriller, whodunit… You all will enjoy Home Before Dark. It’ll make you want to keep the lights on. Mister Shadow definitely creeped the hell out of me. Keep reading for more of my thoughts on Home Before Dark!
Side note: I absolutely am in love with this glow in the dark cover! It's super cool! My parents definitely looked at me weird at my excitement over it.
Warning! Spoilers :)
I can’t help but be a little disappointed in this one. I was truly rooting for a paranormal ending. It was another one of those twisted human beings! This one reminds me a lot of Lock Every Door, with this creepy building that’s seen a lot of tragedies. I was honestly more keen on the lies Maggie’s father told in his book than anything else. I was really rooting for there to be truths to what he had written in the book.
Considering we learn that Maggie’s father lied about the majority of the House of Horrors book, I find it really interesting with how much he lied about and how he created such a full-fledged story. I truly had hoped major portions of this were true. I appreciated that he wrote a letter explaining everything to Maggie. I was also relieved to discover it wasn’t truly Maggie who had killed Petra.
I thought the conversation Maggie has with her former therapist was intriguing as well. How she thought Maggie’s father’s book was less about what had happened in that and more about him trying to understand his daughter.