Other reviews at The Book Babe's Reads.
Fun fact about me: if I read a book that scares me, I will run past the windows in my house. It's been like that ever since I was super young - if I watch a scary movie, I run past the windows. It goes both ways - and let me tell you, The Vanishing definitely incurred some window-running. Which in my mind, is always a good thing!
I picked this one up on a whim, and I'm glad I did! Because it turned out to be a fantastic read, with a wonderful atmosphere! It reads like a modern gothic novel, taking place in an old old house. The writing alone was enough to give me chills. (And it did, repeatedly.) I found myself constantly questioning each decision made, and each and every character. I felt like I couldn't trust any of them, so I just... didn't.
The premise intrigued me - a woman who's supposed to be dead, living out in a haunted house, and her son who arranges for a caretaker - who doesn't really appear to be needed. I found Julia to be a rather likable character. She just... aside from seeing things and hearing things, she seems like a fairly normal person. When the house is empty and something talks to her... she runs. Like any sane person in her situation would do! I just nearly clapped when that happened - I was afraid that she might try to go all paranormally and talk to it - but no. She did good.
I also liked the "love interest", Andrew McCullough. He was super adorable, and really very sweet. He was all Scottish and manly and just adorable - I have such a weakness for the Scottish.
I enjoyed Mrs. Sinclair - she was eccentric as all get out, but she had a good heart, even if it was hidden in a delightfully weird packaging. I hope I'm a cool old lady like her - when I get that old, of course. ;)
Serious chills happened with the ghosties, though. Serious chills. There was a moment in the beginning - a little girl, floating, singing. "Sing a song of sixpence / A pocketful of rye". That's pretty much imprinted in my mind. There were several moments that made me freak out - in a good way.
I loved the fact that the whole novel was focused on the build-up, but I feel like the end scene was a little rushed. The epilogue completely made up for it, though. It left me with a sense of not everything adding up - and it was good. It made me wonder how crazy our main character was; and I just didn't want it to end.
All in all, I definitely recommend The Vanishing. I want you all to read it, because I loved it. I tweeted this when I finished, and it definitely still applies.
I am literally terrified right now. @wendykwebb 's The Vanishing is genius you guys, genius. That ending was fantastically creepy. O.o
— Megan@The Book Babe (@MVTheBookBabe) December 10, 2013