It has been long since I read The Ruins by Scott Smith. And with my short-term memory, it will be hard (impossible) to remember the names of the characters I’ll like to add but the plot is engraved in my head because it’s unique in its own weird, horrific way!
I just learnt that it has been adopted into a movie! And the casts are really good actors/actresses so I’ll definitely give the movie a try or not since it took me quite some time to grow out of the discomfort of the plot of this story.
You know it gets really dark when Stephen King reviews something as “the best horror novel of the new century,” and let’s appreciate how beautiful the cover is. It doesn’t show any horror elements but well…we get to see some plants on it and THAT’S just what the cover needs.
Here is the Amazon blurb:
Trapped in the Mexican jungle, a group of friends stumble upon a creeping horror unlike anything they could ever imagine.Two young couples are on a lazy Mexican vacation–sun-drenched days, drunken nights, making friends with fellow tourists. When the brother of one of those friends disappears, they decide to venture into the jungle to look for him. What started out as a fun day-trip slowly spirals into a nightmare when they find an ancient ruins site . . . and the terrifying presence that lurks there.
What I liked most about this book is a particular character -whose name I have forgotten- but he was all in to survive. And that, is something we don’t get to see often (or executed well) in horror novels/movies. The character is OVERLY logical. Its sickening even how logical he is but it’s understandable. We need someone with an open mind in these kinds of situations.
The ending, like some horror novels/movies is a loop that leads to the beginning of the book. I love this kind of story. It’s like I’ve read two books one after the other.
I was disturbed by this novel on a scale that body horror gets me. I don’t read many body horror but I’ve read The Troop by Nick Cutter. And damn, the goosebumps, skin tingling, and discomfort were absolutely there!
No spoilers but I didn’t look at plants the same way again until months after reading this book. This is enough heads up for you to get yourself ready before diving into this book. If you have plants in your room, you might want to take them to a friend when you sit to read this. The last thing you’d want to do is be unable to sleep in your own house and or throw away your babies.
Okay, maybe I’m being a little bit overdramatic here but this book caught me off guard. I didn’t read it’s description or reviews. I just dove into it knowing it’s a good scare. And well, let’s just say it’s on my discomforting list.
Why you should read this:
- To scare yourself.
- To scare yourself away from your plants! More emphasis here cause I’d have appreciated a heads up before getting into this but I was overly confident in myself.
- The characters are well, like most characters in a horror novel/movies. We have the brave, rational, irrational, nervous…yes we get a lot to root for.
- It’s a gripping read. So don’t get into it if you have a deadline glaring at you. It will have you hooked from the very first page. I finished it in two days.
- Many things are going to go wrong. You’ll get frustrated with some characters actions and awe at others bravery. And dare I say you’ll want to punch those who haven’t warned the characters of what lies ahead of them in the face.
Now, will I reread it?
Ummm…it’s either I watch the movie or reread it once only! And that’s because I don’t have any plants -notice I hinted it again, don’t take it as a joke!- in my room. If I have, I won’t read it again because the plot is amazing, the pace is superb, and the characters…you’ll get attached to them base on which type of characters you like, and it’s unlikely that I’ll forget any (except the characters names.) I definitely loved two of the characters.
That’s all I have to tell you about The Ruins. Read it and let’s have a counseling session in the comments below. Jk 😉
The next book I’ll likely be reviewing is The Troop by Nick Cutter. Another book that made goosebumps cover my skin.
Peace out ✌️