Sunday, January 1, 2012

The Woman in Black- By Susan Hill

Jacque's Review:

I selected this as our book to movie because I wanted to see what Daniel Radcliffe would be starring in for his first film after Harry Potter.  I knew nothing about the book besides the fact that it was a ghost story.  When I went to see Breaking Dawn, The Woman in Black was one of the previews.  It looked REALLY scary and I was beginning to wonder what I had gotten myself into.

The book starts out with a family getting ready to celebrate Christmas.  As part of their tradition, all of the children gather around the fire and tell ghost stories on Christmas Eve.  The children try to convince their father to tell a story, but he is overcome by the situation and steps out of the house for a while to regain his composure.  While outside he resolves to put down in writing what he cannot put into words, the real life ghost story he experienced while in his early 20s and working as an attorney.  At this point I was excited about where this could be leading, but ultimately it did not live up to my expectations.

The first 100 pages were very slow for me.  First we learn that Mrs. Drablow has passed away and that Arthur will have to go to Eel Marsh House to settle her estate.  Whenever he mentions the owner or the house to people around town, nobody will discuss it with him.  Arthur becomes increasingly agitated by the apparent lack of respect for the deceased.  When he attends the funeral, he is one of only 3 people in attendance.  When he refers to The Woman in Black that he saw at the grave site to others, they become very distressed.  There was a lot of setup such as this before the ghost story truly began.  The last 40 pages were a bit more exciting as we experience the hauntings of Eel Marsh House, but I never once had the feelings the movie trailer conjured up.  Clearly Hollywood is taking some liberties with this one, and for Radcliffe's sake I sure hope they do.

Here is a copy of the movie trailer. 

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