Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Imagine you are in an open room and you can’t see the walls because they stretch to infinity. Then you are forced to close your eyes and if you open them you will be killed but then again you can’t remain in one place forever or you will starve to death or worse. That will be a quick non-spoiler summary of the book.

Bird Box has to be the most engulfing book I read this year along with The Shock of The Fall. I couldn’t concentrate on anything properly until I finished reading it. I read it in two or three sittings because life interrupted me each time, or I would’ve read it in one sitting. I find it really hard to believe that these books are debut novels. Extraordinary!

Bird box doesn’t have ‘book jump scares’ or any ghosts or whatever. But it is written so well that the suspense is just tormenting. When I say tormenting I do not mean it negatively at all.

The middle (more or less) part of the book was the creepiest to me. The book is quite creepy and keeps you on the edge through out, not because you know what will happen but because you know things could go either ways. Besides that, the suspense isn’t tiring at all, it’s just the right amount.

I was reading the book sitting infront of my desk where I always keep the iPad ‘standed’ on it such that it reflects my surrounding. Josh Malerman does such a good job at conveying the fear of unknown that while I was reading, my eyes kept wondering to the iPad, suddenly sure I am about to see something drooling on my hair or whatever! I know, irrational fear. I was laughing at myself but creeped out at the same time.

I don’t know why, but some aspects of this book kind of reminded me of The Host by Stephanie Meyer. This book had some of the typical elements of a post-apocalyptic atmosphere e.g. the search for civilisation. However, it was by no means clichéd or boring. I personally thought the plot was simple but I tend to find complex ideas simple while mess up simple ideas! By simple, I don’t mean it’s unoriginal or boring, rather, as the story progresses you understand how a particular situation will/may advance but then again you don’t. It’s really hard to explain!

Overall, I would rate this book 5 out of 5 and recommend it to anyone really, unless you are quite faint of heart. Then maybe not. I do realise I haven’t really talked about the plot and everything but it’s for a good reason. Although I have been raving about it, I do have some issues with this book. Nothing is flawless, after all! By issues I mean unanswered questions, so spoiler alert.

Again, spoiler alert. Jump to the 2nd paragraph from here to avoid spoilers.

Why are the creatures so terribly explained? I was anticipating to see or at least hear what they looked like. The best we get is ‘you are not bad at all’ from Olympia but after she goes mad. So, we have no clue about what this creatures are whatsoever! Are they aliens? Are they viruses? Mutated bacteria? Tell me, I need answers! How did they originate? What is their purpose? Why exactly do humans and animals go mad when they see the creatures but not when they touch the creatures? Near the end we know they can touch clothes because the creature touches Malorie’s blindfold. So why do they not forcefully enter houses, or kill people directly (choke them with their blindfolds perhaps)? How can one fight these creatures? I had other questions but ofcourse I can’t remember them now! Anyways, I want answers.

Don’t let my slight issues put you of. I heard a sequel will be coming but I am not sure how valid that news is. It’s the best £5.99 I spent on a book. The book is good enough for the questions to be ignorable. Unless, you are me. But really, trust me (says a stranger from the Internet…) read the book.

The scene where Felix goes to fetch water killed me. The anticipation…


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