The Apartment

S.L. Grey. Blumhouse, $15 trade paper (272p) ISBN 978-1-101-97294-6
Two boring characters lurch toward their fate in this listless contemporary horror novel from Grey (the writing team of Sarah Lotz and Louis Greenberg). Mark’s shotgun marriage to trophy wife Steph, who’s already haunted by the ghosts of Mark’s failed first marriage, is further strained by a home invasion. A chance to reset by swapping their apartment in Cape Town, South Africa, for one in Paris, France, only makes matters worse. When Mark thinks, “I’m nothing but a cliché,” he is sadly on the nose, as Grey doesn’t give readers any reason to care about a whining sad sack who accidentally killed his daughter. Steph’s jealousy and selfishness make her little better. The use of past-tense narration by Steph takes the mystery out of Mark’s present-tense account, and the horror elements (a suicide, hallucinations) produce barely more than a yawn. The story is slow until the rush to a senseless final death and a buck-passing ending that disappoints instead of satisfying. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/08/2016
Release date: 10/04/2016
Genre: Fiction
Hardcover - 978-1-101-97295-3
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Audio book sample courtesy of Penguin Random House Audio
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