THE HYPNOTIST by Lars Kepler

There's a lot of hype about this novel, even to the extent of comparing it to The Silence of the Lambs and The Shining. Is it in that sort of category? Well, in my opinion, no. Definitely no. And for a rather unusual reason.
   It reads quite well, divided up into short bite-sized chapters which drip-feed events, information, and ratchet up the tension. The dialogues and the descriptions are pretty good. But...
   ... you knew there was going to be a 'but', didn't you?
   Usually with this type of thriller-cum-horror-cum-detective book, you finish it thinking "wow, that was exciting, neat plot, I just wish the characters had been drawn better." At least, I usually do, because the authors put so much into the plot that they neglect the characters. Well, The Hypnotist was the other way around. I thought the characters were pretty well drawn, but you could drive several buses through the plot, plus quite a lot of it just seemed plain impossible to me, or very unlikely. There's a great deal that remains unexplained. I can see what the authors (yes, Lars is actually two people) have done. If this book was put up on the screen, all the little chapters would work effectively as scenes, and the audience would be so caught up in the horror and action, that they'd not be too critical of the plot. But as a book, I think it's stand-out that too little is explained, and some of it just doesn't seem feasible to me.
   Sorry, Lars x 2. I don't think I'd really recommend this book, despite all the hype. But I'll bet a penny to a pound that it ends up on the silver screen in a couple of years, despite its shortcomings.
add comment | read comments (0) 2011-11-17