|Print List Price:||$12.95|
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Mama Kindle Edition
|Length: 287 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Learn more
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Top customer reviews
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I bought this book after seeing it mentioned at goodreads and thinking it would be a good story. Although I thought the plot was interesting and rather unique compared to other horror books I've read, I felt there were a few things missing.
As for what I liked, it was definitely an interesting story line. The way Mama makes herself visible is something I rarely read in books or see in movies, and the way she uses her children to help carry out her actions is bizarre. Trying to visualize the action when she and her kids were committing horrific acts made for some unusual mental imagery.
There was a a lot of action in the book, which was both good and bad in my opinion. On a positive note the frequent action left me often wondering how the book was going to end.
There were a few times where I was a tad teary-eyed (not bawling... lol) based on what I'd read, so I was able to build a little bit of sympathy for the characters, but not a lot, and that was one of the things I didn't like.
On that note, I really wanted to see significantly more character development. I knew a few basics about the people involved, such as the daughter's relationship with her friend and the son's obsession with bugs. Considering the majority of the book focused on this family's plight in their attempt to escape what they see as as crazy woman, I had a hard time feeling sympathy for them since I didn't feel I "knew" them. There wasn't much of an emotional connection.
I also would have loved to have seen more descriptions of the scenery and the action, even if that meant taking some of the action out of the book to limit the length. When reading a book I always visualize it (can't help doing that, and I'm sure most or all of you do the same), and it was often difficult visualizing the action in "Mama" as I kept expecting to read something more illustrative. My mental imagery just didn't have the same details it's had when I've read other horror novels.
There was a lot of backtracking in time which often confused me. For example, in one part of the book the father is talking to the mother in a store. When the next chapter begins, the mother is walking into the same store. I had a lot of "Wait a minute, so-and-so was just doing such-and-such" moments whenever these time reversals occurred, and sometimes there would be multiple time changes/jumps in the same chapter. I've seen this type of writing in other books, but in those books it wasn't done with the regularity or frequency as it was in "Mama."
The author presented the story from different points of view within the same chapter, and I found this confusing at times. For example, the father would be referred to as "Jeff" if the story was coming from the mother or father's perspective, and a few paragraphs later he would be "Dad" if the story was coming from the son or daughter's point of view. While I do like seeing a story from different characters' perspectives, I'm not used to this changing as frequently as it did in this book.
Despite the aspects I didn't care for, I have no regrets reading the book. I'd love to see it made into a horror movie as the industry could really use a story line as unique as this one.
I think the characters made this story for me, as much as the plot. The Conover family is headed back to Illinois after Jeff's career as an actor has hit a dead end. His wife Lee, although she won't admit it to her husband, is more than happy to not live the Hollywood life. Alison is your typical angry teen, furious at what she sees as her father's failure and how it is "ruining" her life. Of all of them, 9 year old Michael was my favorite character. He was sweet and smart and just a lovable kid. Mama and her family, even though the villians of the story, were relatable in their own way. Mama came from a different world, a world in which you had to be hard and cruel to survive. In her own way, she was trying to teach her own children an important lesson. I never thought I would find a murderous villian a sympathetic character, but there were definately shreds of humanity with Mama and her kids.
I think this was a very unique twist on horror, with a very engaging plot. I wouldn't recommend it for the under 17 crowd necessarily because of the level of gore, but I definately recommend it for those who love a good, creepy read!
It's the construction that makes this great. Morris's prose isn't the most colorful, but after a page or two you start to see that dusty old bricks can be stacked up into ingenious art too. One thread after another creeps into the tale, sometimes teasing us for a hundred pages before it rips things open. And while the concept (being stalked across the country by... you'll see) is easy to follow, there are a LOT of threads within it. Between them it has
* a vicious, supernatural villain, who lives by four words: "That's what you're for."
* a very ordinary family dragged into nightmare in slow motion. You'll even forget how many other stories have tried to use the idea too; this is the real one.
* suspense from slow burn to scorching chases with everything in between.
* supporting characters that really do add fresh perspective to the central ones.
* struggling across highways, hills, and towns that are pure America, where every loose wire in the car could be life and death, but not just yet...
* characters of every level that die when they need to, or just when they really should survive.
MAMA brings all this together the way most writers only hint they could pull off. This is the good stuff.