the first time i heard about this story was a few weeks ago when i learned about the movie with daniel radcliffe. a couple of days later i learned that the movie is based on a novel.
again a couple of days later, i saw the movie trailer that scared the living shit out of me, but, nonetheless, aroused my curiosity in the story.
i'm not a scary/horror movie kind of gal (the ring
e.g. brought me a fuckton of nightmares), but reading scary stories is okay with me.
to make a (not so) long story short: i bought a copy of The Woman in Black and started reading. and found me confused as hell.
i read the first pages and thought i got the wrong book. i thought i got an unknown classic, a bronte-austen-mishmash. don't get me wrong, i like classics, but imo it's inapt to mix classic with horror.
next up, i got the feeling the author couldn't decide between 'am i going to scare or bore readers to death'. undeniably, this book had its scary moments, alas far too few of them. in return the main character rambled on and on and on, got lost in irrelevant background info, unnecessary descriptions and overdone trains of thought. the suspense comes off badly. furthermore the horror is way too predictable.
the ending, however, was to my liking. the events came out of the blue and were my highlight of the book.
a word or two about the writing: what. the. hell o.O it's not a crime to write multi clause sentences, but some of them need to get cordoned off with barrier tape and investigated. i counted: there's a sentence composed of 73 words divided with 10 commas. this is just... scary. well, yeah, like i said, this book had its scary moments (just kidding).
but, multi clause sentences aside, i liked the writing. the author is like a painter save that she's painting with words. there are so many vivid descriptions, i can just picture it all.
on the other hand the writing was quite a challenge that made this book a pretty slow read. some passages dragged on and on and on. plus, it still doesn't work with a ghost story.
i don't know how to rate this book. mulling it over i think it's 2.5 advance towards 3 stars - for the good moments, for the awesome ending, for the writing, and for spider (i liked the dog).