Great perils have this beauty, that they bring to light the fraternity of strangers. - Victor Hugo
after spending a day at the Belgian seaside, Louise and her younger sister Jennifer head for their remote holiday cottage to spend the summer together. as soon as they arrive, they each encounter their worst nightmares.
the characters' personalities are clearly defined. the differences between the siblings either mask or highlight their similarities and mutual dependency. the strangers' identities and their origins are shrouded in mystery. even the motive for their actions leave much room for the reader to speculate on.
the pacing is really fast and the events are deftly sequenced that i finished the 24-page story in 15 minutes or so. instead of reading, it felt like i was watching a short film too.
the locale also brings to mind a training camp up in the mountains where i often used to go. it is only a ten-minute drive from civilization but out there, you suddenly feel so isolated. the whole area is surrounded by verdant forest. an empty parking lot is all that remains when the last group of day shift employees
leave for home. when dusk falls, the whole camp is transformed. as if on cue, your ears are filled with the discordant symphony generated by unseen nocturnal creatures trying to outdo one another. light posts automatically switch on but between these sentinels lie deep pools of darkness. the cemented pathways leading to the sleeping quarters are bathed in shadows as well. now i wonder how i would regard the place should i get the chance to participate in another training.
Vanessa Morgan has certainly written a fast-paced-bad-things-do-happen-to-good-people story. i have to admit that reading The Strangers Outside creeped me out and my imagination went into overdrive. i literally locked the doors, latched the windows, read with all the lights on and made sure that i sat with my back to the wall.
i have no fear of the dark or even strangers but now i am reconsidering...
my personal rating is:
The Strangers Outside may not be suitable for young readers 17 & under
Disclosure of Material Connection: i received the book The Strangers Outside from the author herself. i did not receive any payment in exchange for this review nor was I obligated to write a positive one. all opinions expressed here are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, the book's publisher and publicist or the readers of this review. this disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.