REVIEW: Amity by Micol Ostow

For fans of Stephen King and American Horror Story, a gruesome thriller suggested by the events of the Amityville Horror.

Connor’s family moves to Amity to escape shady business deals. Ten years later, Gwen’s family moves to Amity for a fresh start after she’s recovered from a psychotic break.

But something is not right about this secluded house. Connor’s nights are plagued with gore-filled dreams of demons and destruction. Dreams he kind of likes. Gwen has lurid visions of corpses that aren’t there and bleeding blisters that disappear in the blink of an eye. She knows Amity is evil and she must get her family out, but who would ever believe her?

Amity isn’t just a house. She is a living force, bent on manipulating her inhabitants to her twisted will. She will use Connor and Gwen to bring about a bloody end as she’s done before. As she’ll do again.

Alternating between parallel narratives, Amity is a tense and terrifying tale suggested by true-crime events that will satisfy even the most demanding horror fan.

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Amity is the story of two teenagers, ten years apart, and their experiences at Amity. Amity is based off of the Amityville Horror (just like it seems).

Let me preface my review with stating the fact that I’ve seen all the Amityville movies (even the b-rate), read the book, and even watched some documentaries. Because of that, I had ridiculously high expectations and was pretty disappointed when the book just couldn’t match up with them.

First, the “then” (10 years ago) and the “now” at times were really similar. Too similar. I felt like I was re-reading the exact chapter. I understand what the author was trying to do with it but for the most part, I didn’t think it worked. On the other hand, the very last meaty chapter (as in, not the epilogue) the author perfectly executed the combination of “then” and “now.” Once I finished that chapter that I actually thought “this is the point.” So kudos on that one.

The other disappointing part was the language used. Connor (then) used a lot of “like” and “kind of” when he talked. It was supposed to be authentic of a teenage boy but it sounded dumbed down since he was a narrator. Gwen (now) on the other hand, was super wordy and occasionally sentences lost potency due to excessive adjectives. But then again, they way scary occurrences described was awesome. There was a part about Gwen being in her room and she heard a scurrying sound and when she looked she saw a white leg disappearing under her bed (much better described by the author). I was so creeped out afterwards I had to turn on the light.

Amity had it’s high and low points. I think a good deal of people will enjoy this. I just wasn’t one of them. If you like scary stuff you might as well give it a try and see if I’m wrong.


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