So I just finished Ira Levin’s Rosemary’s Baby. I have always loved the movie, but have never read the book. Until now.
Originally I was going to read the novel, and then watch the film, but they are just the same. Of course there were some minor differences between the two, but they’re so minor it’s not worth it.
The book is just like the film in how slow the build up is. I don’t mean that in a bad way. The book held my interest throughout the reading, but Levin made sure to lay the groundwork for the climax.
One way the novel was different from the film was that there was more foreshadowing in the beginning. The other noticeable difference was the baby was described more in the novel, where the film leaves it up to the audience’s imagination. What I noticed about Rosemary’s Baby and the novel I read before it, The Exorcist, is that they both make the reader think. Having grown up in the 1980’s during the slasher period in the horror genre, it’s nice to read something that doesn’t spell everything out.
What makes this novel scary isn’t gore, a maniacal killer, or a high body count. It’s the notion that the people you love and trust can betray you in the most unfathomable way. It’s the idea that something may be wrong with you, or your unborn child. Many pregnant women have a fear that something may go wrong with their pregnancy, and it’s this fear that makes Rosemary’s Baby terrifying. I don’t want to give anything away, but there are other elements in the novel that also offer up scares.
Though I recommend this book as a good read, I won’t lie to you. If you are expecting thrills, chills, and a butt-load of action, you will be disappointed. This is a slow, unraveling tale that fills you with anticipation of what’s to come.
For my 7th book of 2012, I’m going to read Hush by Anne Frasier. I found this while looking on Amazon. The novel is about Ivy Dunlap, a criminal psychologist with the Chicago PD who is called in to investigate the “Madonna Murders.” The serial killer preys on newborn baby boys and their unwed mothers, then leaves a musical snow globe that plays “Hush, Little Baby” at the scene of the crime.
Seems interesting, but I’ve never read any books by Anne Frasier before, so we’ll see if I like it. I guess I’ll let you know 🙂