Review: The Hollow City by Dan Wells

The Hollow CityThe Hollow City by Dan Wells
Read: February 19 – February 20, 2013
Personal read, 333 pages

Book Blurb: Michael Shipman has paranoid schizophrenia; he suffers from hallucinations, delusions, and complex, horrific fantasies of persecution. They are as real to him as your life is to you. He is haunted by sounds and voices, stalked by faceless men, and endlessly pursued by something even deeper and darker – something he doesn’t dare think about.

Soon the authorities are linking him to a string of gruesome killings, and naturally no one believes his protestations of innocence. On his worst days, he doesn’t believe them himself. Hounded on every side, Michael contemplates a terrifying possibility: that some of the monsters he sees are real.

My Opinion: Dan Wells is one of my favorite writers. Though, the more I read, the more I feel compelled to say that he has written one of my favorite books, because nothing but that book seems to stick out as excellent to me. Unfortunately, The Hollow City also falls into that category.

I will give Wells his due. The voice he has created for The Hollow City is fantastic. The story as told by a man spiraling into madness makes it all that much more interesting. He is unreliable, and it leaves you questioning what is real and what isn’t, not only in the book but in your own life. However, that was about the only fantastic thing about the book for me.

I longed for The Hollow City to be more of a crime thriller and less of a supernatural thriller. Wells certainly had the chops to make it happen, it just needed more police scenes and less of the weird ending that made me cringe and want to write the author a letter begging him to stop putting a science fiction twist on everything. For those of you who have read his debut series (John Cleaver), you will understand what I mean.

I was engaged in the story right until the last few chapters. I really didn’t like the ending, and if it weren’t for that, I would probably have enjoyed the book more overall. Though, the epilogue gave me chills, because it was so open-ended.

I don’t seem to have much to say about this book, because my excitement for it died with the ending.

Bottom Line: Fantastic narrative voice, but I found everything else to be a little flat.

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