Review: The Three by Sarah Lotz

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Title: The Three
Author: Sarah Lotz
Pages: 480
Genre: Fiction; Thriller/horror
Publisher: Little, Brown & Co. (Hachette)
Pub. Date: May 20, 2014

I have mixed feelings about The Three. It was creepy (good) but weird, enthralling but irritating, captivating but repetitive. I was drawn to this one by the premise and my interest lately in scarier things. (It's like I'm a teenager again!... almost). Basically, four planes crash on the same day. There are no survivors except for three children. Before long, all these conspiracy theories arise about the kids. Are they a part of alien experiments? Are they a sign of the apocalypse? Large groups form  that believe in each theory. The End Time Believers create a religious group called the "Pamelists" in honor of the one adult, Pam, who managed to send a partial message by phone before she passed. But as horrible as all this is, some of the people who are around the kids can't deny that there is something different about the kids who survived... but isn't that normal considering they've been through such a trauma??

I initially thought the way the story was told was clever and interesting: the entire book is basically the narrator's non-fiction book, Black Thursday: From Crash to Conspiracy, and is told through various (many, many) interviews that the "author" did. There are also chat room transcripts and magazine articles. While this was interesting at first it became way. too. much. These are the things that moved the story along, but I do think it could have done with moving a little faster because, as I mentioned earlier, it felt repetitive after a while. And by the end of the book, the last 75 pages or so, I had pretty much lost all interest.

On the other hand, I did find the book to be engaging. There was a lot of foreshadowing and just overall creepiness that made me want to read more. Even though it isn't really a scary book per se, there was one night when I didn't turn the light off when I went to sleep, because the whole things with the kids was creeping me out a little too much! The whole evangelist thing was funny but scary in a whole different way.

So, while I felt mixed emotions throughout the reading and after, I still think ultimately it was an interesting read and would still recommend it for maybe some fall/scary/Halloween themed reading.


Sandy Nawrot said...

I did like this book. Maybe not love it though. The kids were creepy and the way the story was told was clever, but I thought it also kept the reader from really investing in any of the characters. And that ending! What the hell? Never did completely figure everything out. Our book club just met on this book last night, and most people weren't even able to finish the book.

Ti said...

It definitely gets a gold star for CREEP factor. It has an Asian horror feel to it. If you know what I mean. That ending though. Not sure what to make of it. I sort of felt ripped off at the end.

bermudaonion said...

It sounds interesting to me. The fact that you had mixed feelings makes me think it would make a good book club choice.

Heather @ Book Addiction said...

I liked the book overall. I thought the only thing really scary was the initial plane crash scene, although the kids were a bit creepy it wasn't to that "OMG" level for me. The ending was puzzling and although I don't always mind an ambiguous ending, this one kind of annoyed me. But I did like the book, especially the creativity of the concept and the fact that I could not put the thing down!

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