July 22, 2019

Book Review: Follow You Home by Mark Edwards

 
It was supposed to be the trip of a lifetime, a final adventure before settling down. But after a perfect start, an encounter with a young couple on a night train forces Daniel and Laura to cut their dream trip short and flee home.

Back in London, Daniel and Laura vow never to talk about what happened that night. But as they try to fit into their old lives again, they realise they are in terrible danger—and that their nightmare is just beginning…

What intrigued me at first with Follow You Home was that the initial chapters were set on a train en route to Sighisoara, Romania.  A few years ago, I was in such a train and envisioned all sorts of scary things that could happen in the thick forests outside the window. Being the home of Vlad the Impaler, Romania's countryside is beautiful but can be sinister and the setting is just perfect for this novel.

But what intrigued me even more was finding out that this book was inspired by true events.  The author fell asleep in a European train and woke up with passports and other belongings missing. From that terrible experience the author created this novel.

"I knew, with every instinct, every scrap of learned and inherited knowledge, that this was a bad place. That we needed to turn around, right now, and get away.  That we shouldn't take another step towards this building, should not pass through that door, must not go inside.

"But then we heard another cry, a strangled sob from inside those stone walls, and as the silence descended again, Laura and I walked towards the house, towards the door, as if our legs had a will of their own."

Follow You at first circles around what actually happened to Daniel and Laura once their Grand European trip goes off the rails.  The narrative skips to the aftermath of Romania, only now they are broken up and horribly traumatized but whatever happened.  I of course only got curiouser and curiouser, with the suspense and scare factor building up to unbearable levels.  What the heck happened in Romania?

I did eventually find out - but I can only say that it wasn't what I thought it was.  For much of the book I thought one thing and then the last few chapters gave me twist after twist and even after it seemingly resolved, yet another twist.  I will say that the plot seems to be very loosely based on Hansel and Gretel, albeit a twisted one.  

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