The Birthing House
Published Aug 2009
The Harrisons were supposed to be starting fresh - a spur-of-the-moment move to a historical house in an unfamiliar area to help them get over their problems and make things work. But things are just as bad as ever, the neighbors are strange, and the house is full of secrets...
How do you not love a good ghost story? Creeping horror, mysterious shadows and sounds, and dried-up old fetus corpses appearing out of thin air. Yeah, ghost stories are the shit. And this one in particular was pretty outstanding.
While the premise was fairly basic (ghosts haunt shit) and therefore familiar, it was kept from being dull by one extremely important feature: the writing was EPIC. Seriously, this author has got the skills to pay the bills:
And somehow, my review has degenerated into me calling my books my hos. I'm not even that surprised, really.
But back to The Birthing House.
As I said, the writing was impeccable, and although Ransom occasionally did that thing I hate where he was purposely vague and confusing (hence the 9/10 as opposed to a 10/10) the style of writing was kept the same throughout so it wasn't jarring, and it generally worked.
I had a real fondness for the characters. All of them were unpredictable - no stereotypes breaking up my concentration. Conrad especially was someone I liked; while he definitely evolved (boy, did he ever) right off the bat you knew he wasn't quite... stable. And I like an unstable character. Really, all the characters were surprising in some way, which makes for a way more exciting read.
Not only was the spooky stuff definitely skin-crawlingly eerie, but I actually found the relationships and resulting situations even more disturbing. There were actually moments when I had squirming anxiety and wanted to jump out of my skin. Yes, it was that tense.
A good book will pass the time - a GREAT book will also wig you out.
After reading The Birthing House, consider me wigged.