Title: The Girl in the Video
Author: Michael David Wilson
Page Count: 71 pages
Rating: 3.5 / 5 ✨✨✨
After a teacher receives a weirdly arousing video, his life descends into paranoia and obsession. More videos follow—each containing information no stranger could possibly know. But who’s sending them? And what do they want? The answers may destroy everything and everyone he loves.
First, ISN’T THIS COVER GORGEOUS? I’d been seeing it on social media prior to its release and knew that I needed to get it the second it was available – it perfectly matches my aesthetic! I scooped it up with an Amazon gift card for my Kindle on release day, and pushed it up on my TBR due to the wide praise it was receiving from my friends and fellow reviewers.
This is a pretty quick book – a novella at around just under 100, it starts off with a bang and doesn’t let up on pacing until the very end. I was completely absorbed by this, and literally read it on my iPad while sitting awkwardly at my computer desk. I picked it up intending to just read a page or two before getting comfortable in bed, and then forgot to move because I was so engrossed! FOR OVER AN HOUR!!
There were a lot of really creepy moments throughout, and the author’s talent is really obvious from the way that I could visualize all the most freaky & weird parts of this book with absolute clarity – such great descriptions!
There were a few issues with editing that I noticed while reading, and I’m not sure if these are limited to just the digital copy, or the physical ones as well. I typically don’t remove stars for this (and didn’t here), but want to mention it because it pulled me out of the book a couple of times. During one conversation, the main character starts off a sentence to his friend by calling him “Freddie”, which is his own name and not the name of his friend. I had to reread the section multiple times because I wasn’t sure if I was just misreading, and that sort of took me out of the experience a little. These issues were minor though, and didn’t have an impact on the story overall.
I gave this one 3.5 stars, with a rounded up 4 on GR – I enjoyed the hell out of the first 3/4, but will be honest and admit that I really didn’t like the ending. It tied up a bit too neatly and in a way that seemed to come completely out of left field. I prefer my ‘big reveals’ to have had scattered hints or things leading up to them that make the reveal more impactful to me as a reader, which wasn’t the case here.
I also had some issues with the only female characters being written in a way I didn’t find believable — the main character’s wife seemed more like a cardboard caricature than an actual person. I struggled to believe or even understand the motives behind the ‘Big Bad’ and their actions, which was a bit of a disappointment since the whole book preceding this had kept me wondering what was going on, who was behind all of it, and why.
Overall, I don’t regret reading this one, and will have some of the more disturbing visuals replaying in mind in my nightmares, I’m sure – which is always a plus from horror fiction! If you’re looking for something to pull you from a reading slump that you can read in a single sitting or day, check THE GIRL IN THE VIDEO out! Despite the few issues I had, it was a good reading experience, and I’ll absolutely be checking future releases out by the author.
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