22 Following


Currently reading

The Hatha Yoga Pradipika
Pancham Sinh, Swami Swatmarama
Pastel 15
Toshihiko Kobayashi
The Dog Stars
Peter Heller
House of Leaves - Mark Z. Danielewski House of Leaves totally sucked me in. The book is shorter than it seems, but then also longer than it seems. A contradictory statement, I am aware. You get lots of blank page with little text and then pages and page of interpolated commentary.

It's kind of like a modern day Borges horror story meets A&E television programing.

Reading House of Leaves is a different experience than most books. I was thoroughly creeped out in the middle of the book. I found it lessened towards the end, probably due to the shift from the focus on the situation to the personal experiences.

It is hard to explain what House of Leaves is truly about. There's the story within a story within a story bit and then a whole tractor trailer of symbolism and hidden meanings that makes you question what Danielewski was ultimately trying to get at. Not a clear answer to this, honestly.

If you like a book with a conclusive ending and firm endings, then stay way clear of House of Leaves.

The books reads like a long academic essay, akin to a thesis. The primary focus is on the documentary - The Navidson Record - and the copious summarizing, descriptions, citations and interpretations by Zampano. Interspersed among the footnotes are additional footnotes by Johnny, a third party who has found the manuscript and trying to make sense of everything, and he often spouts off long ramblings about his life.

Throw on top of that the "Editors" who have received the manuscript from Johnny and add information about his life in Appendix II.

In some ways, I can understand how others don't like the Johnny portions. His part just isn't as intriguing as the baffling physics of the house. However, I do think it works alongside the documentary.

I don't want to give away spoilers in the review, so I'll keep my theories quiet. There's so much in this book that I could spend hours talking to someone about it. And then probably not end up any more conclusive that I already am. In fact, I am sure I missed out on some things.

It does get long-winded, but I couldn't stop thinking about the story whenever I put House of Leaves down.