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Night Film

Night Film - Marisha Pessl So I’ll be frank and get right to the point – NIGHT FILM was my most anticipated book of 2013, ever since I first saw the cover and read the synopsis. Although I didn’t read Marisha Pessl’s 2006 debut SPECIAL TOPICS IN CALAMITY PHYSICS (yet – I own it), something about the bare bones information about NIGHT FILM drew me in and demanded I read it. When I saw one last copy left at ALA 2013 in Chicago, I knew it was fate. This book and I were meant to be forever friends, soul mates, even creepy partners in crime. When I flew home the next day, I refused to let this one out of my sight. It went with me on the plane and I cracked into its pages, savoring every last creepy morsel this one had in it.If you’re a fan of Mark Danielewski’s HOUSE OF LEAVES, then you might see some similarities in NIGHT FILM in the set up. Where this one divulges is taking a path that makes you wonder how much of what is happening to our hero is real, how much is perceived, what clues are meaningless and which tiny little insignificant facts are actually the keys to solving the case. Excuse my language when I say this, but this book is a complete mind fuck in all the best possible ways.I had feared this book would disappoint me after I put so much faith in it being awesome. But did it? No. If anything, I am a bigger fan of this book now, a few weeks after finishing it, than I was after first acquiring it with an excited yip. This book most likely will go down as my favorite book of 2013, and I don’t hand out that title lightly.CREEPY, TWISTY, TURNYNIGHT FILM follows Scott, a disgraced journalist who still dwells over the story that got away from him – a report on cult filmmaker Stanislas Cordova that resulted in a lawsuit and the end of his career. Until Cordova’s daughter Ashley dies in a strange suicide and Scott finds himself pulled into the investigation, determined to find out how she died, why she died, and if her father and his films had anything to do with it. Picking up Nora – a struggling young aspiring actress who is the last person to see Ashley alive – and Hopper – a man with a strange part of Ashley’s past attached to him – Scott starts to explore connections to dark Satanic rituals, murders, disappearances, and movies that drive people insane, all trying to piece together clues that add up to solve the case.Every page seemingly introduces something new that adds to the mystery, from a unique red coat that factors into every ounce of the novel to a creepy doll found in a child’s pocket. Mysterious things happen that are inexplicable. People disappear. People go to jail. People break into houses in desperation for the clues. I can’t reveal much without giving away the entire novel, but this book is the type that buries itself deep into you and refuses to let go. Ever.THE BEST BOOK OF 2013?No, I do not lavish this type of praise easily. But NIGHT FILM might possibly be the best book of 2013 – at least the best book of 2013 so far. With the magnificent attention to detail in each page of this book, from the words themselves to the ephemera of websites, case files, and random snippets of life left by the wayside for Scott to discover, Pessl impressed me. And here I was, afraid that this book would leave me disappointed. I should have never doubted it. I should have trusted my heart that this book would be the perfect match for me and my tastes.It was. And I hope it will be for you, too. Read this book now.VERDICT: Maybe the best book of 2013? It’s creepy, twisty, and consuming. That’s all you need to know – besides the fact that you need to go buy this book now and devour it.