Holland and Niles Perry are identical thirteen-year-old twins. They are close, close enough, almost, to read each other’s thoughts, but they couldn’t be more different. Holland is bold and mischievous, a bad influence, while Niles is kind and eager to please, the sort of boy who makes parents proud. The Perrys live in the bucolic New England town their family settled centuries ago, and as it happens, the extended clan has gathered at its ancestral farm this summer to mourn the death of the twins’ father in a most unfortunate accident. Mrs. Perry still hasn’t recovered from the shock of her husband’s gruesome end and stays sequestered in her room, leaving her sons to roam free. As the summer goes on, though, and Holland’s pranks become increasingly sinister, Niles finds he can no longer make excuses for his brother’s actions.
I’ve had The Other on my shelves for absolutely ages because it’s got an incredible average rating on Goodreads for a horror. While I did enjoy this one, I didn’t love it like I thought I would.
This is one of those books where I’ve finished it half having enjoyed it and half thinking “what just happened?” Even the afterword couldn’t help me grasp this story. Listen, I’m not saying I didn’t understand the book, I did, I got the main, but there were definitely some underlying messages in there that went way over my head.
What I liked most about this book was the writing. There’s no denying that Tryon is an incredibly talented author with an incredible skill to bring places and people to life. The whole book was written superbly with each character beautifully developed. What I liked least about this book was the story. I didn’t find any of it “scary”, I would maybe class this as a slow-burning psychological thriller, as there definitely were some good moments of tension and Holland’s character was certainly creepy in parts.
To give the book credit, it is quite old, and at the time the story was probably quite shocking. I personally found how the story unfolded predictable and even the beautiful writing couldn’t completely win me over.
At least it was a quick and easy read! I would give Tryon’s work another go but I probably won’t go out of my way to read his other stuff.
*Buy it here: Amazon UK